Thursday, November 2, 2017

Sourdough Deep Dish Pizza

I love a good deep dish pizza...the kind you have to eat with a fork and knife....
This last weekend I made a loaf of sourdough bread....and I reserved a portion just for pizza.
Since I wasn't going to make it right away...I sprayed the inside of the ziplock with coconut oil spray and dropped it in there. Raw dough is good for about 4 days or so...I wouldn't push it beyond that really.
Yesterday, I was ready...so I pulled out my round deep cast iron pan from Hubby's BBQ and oiled it really well. Then plopped the dough out from the fridge and gently pushed it into place and then let it rest for about 10 mins.
In the meantime I turned on the oven to 425 and I poked a few holes with a fork to keep it from expanding too much....
Then I popped it into the oven for about 8 mins. (your oven may vary)
This cooks the dough a bit...which you need to do as this is thick crust and would be hot dough with toppings if you put it all on now....
After it comes from the oven, let it cool a bit so it isn't too hot....
then put on all the toppings you desire!
In this case, I put on some turkey lunch meat, sauce, mushrooms, mozzarella, parmesan and some Italian seasoning.....
I put it on for about 15 minutes....and waited until the mozzerella was bubbling and starting to turn brown....
And....voila!

Definitely fork and knife fare....and oh so good!
We ate half of it for lunch and the other half I cut in half and placed it on parchment and put in a bag and put it in the freezer....another meal for a another day!
It was rich and gooey and the bottom was beautifully crispy.
Just the right amount of chew and goo!!
Have a great day.
Nancy

Sunday, October 29, 2017

The Making of Coconut Yogurt...the Mesophilic Way

I took a class on making zingy coconut yogurt at the Fermentation Farm here in Costa Mesa.
This yogurt is unlike any, and I mean any, yogurt you get from a grocery store. Supposedly, it has more healthy probiotics than "thermophilic" yogurts in the store...simply because there is no heat involved at all.
It is much like making kombucha...using kefir grains to develop the yogurt.
It is simply amazing.
When you buy it at the store it costs $6. That includes a real glass canning jar...so I get it.
But, one small half pint gives two maybe three servings of yogurt..so it would be cheaper in the end to make a large batch yourself.
So, I took the class.
You use milk kefir grains that are fed on milk...but are rinsed....since they are rinsed there is no dairy in them.
Mesophilic yogurt is a counter-top yogurt...it ferments covered on your counter. It takes about 9 hours for the first fermenting and then another 15 for the second if you want to flavor it. Trust me, it is so delicious with the vanilla honey it is worth the extra time.
 This is the first thing you will need....real milk kefir grains. The milk that feeds it gets rinsed out so it is not dairy...
 It will take about a week of feeding the grains...longer if it is cool...and you change the milk daily....
After that it is just a matter of a good size glass bowl, 1 can organic coconut milk(with only water and coconut), and 6 cans of coconut cream(again organic and only coconut and water). You whisk together the milks and cream drop in the kefir grains that you have rinsed and put in a reusable muslin tea bag (this is so you can retrieve it and wash it and put it back into some milk for later).
It takes 9 hours for the yogurt to happen.
Now, it will finish thickening in the fridge it you don't want any flavor...you can taste it and see...does it need more time to thicken or get the flavor you want?? That's fine....
If it is "done" and you want to flavor it ...use 6TBSP of vanilla bean paste and 6TBSP of raw honey...and let it sit covered for 15-18 hours....
and voila! You have yogurt!
This recipe makes 14 half pints of coconut yogurt! Thats like 28 servings!
Awesome!
Tricks are in using pure organic coconut milk and cream and vanilla bean paste and raw honey.
If you use other it may not work...as it isn't properly feeding the culture that is making the yogurt.
Why is this yogurt so good for you??
Coconut itself is a healthy nutritional powerhouse.
It supports the immune system...it is anti-viral and anti-bacterial, anti-fugal, and anti-parasitic...
It provides natural energy...
It improves digestion...
improves insulin....
It helps the body fight cancer...
It improves HDL (good cholesterol)...
It supports thyroid...
It helps protect against kidney disease and bladder infection...
It can promote weight loss..
and it helps skin and hair...
And that is just raw coconut!
Add to coconut the power of fermenting and the sky is the limit!
Okay, I will get off my soap box...
I am getting us into fermenting more and this is such a delightful way to get it into you!!

Today, I am making more homemade sourdough bread from my sourdough starter. That is another yummy way to eat fermented food! True sourdough doesn't need extra yeast or sugar! So I make a batch once a week....even I can eat it though I don't tolerate wheat...I've read its because the fermenting breaks down the wheat so it doesn't affect intolerant people. Of course each person needs to decide for themselves. It still makes me fat......but I don't get the reaction I do with other wheat....
So....I hope you have a great day!!
Nancy

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

"It's the Light!"

It happens roughly two times a year, sometimes less....but it has hit again....
My Hubby claims...."It's the Light!"
It may well be...there is a certain light that comes in the windows in the spring and then in the fall....It seems according to Hubby that Fall is the time I clean and organize the most....
I guess, it is like getting ready for winter...check stock and laying in supplies...or maybe it is just the light.....
It started last week...I did my closet! Yes, yes I did.
My daughter had her walk in closet done and the designer told her about using these thinner velvet covered hangers...if you use all the same thin hangers, you get about 1 foot or more of space.
Well, helping her with her closet I was hooked.
Now, my closet is not a walk in so it should make more of a difference.....
While I was at it, I got ride of clothes I knew I wasn't going to use....That helped also....
I did the main closet and even the undies drawer and sock drawer!
I gave away to Savers about 100 hangers!
 I know, it still isn't much to look at, but, I can find things now!
Here is only some of the hangers I got rid of! It is totally true! See how much space these hangers  take just sitting here??
I bought my hangers on Amazon....you can get a better deal possibly from Ebay like my daughter did. As she is a clothes horse...she needed more than 400 hangers!
So on to what I did yesterday....
I had purchased one of those cupboard organizers that looks like a staircase...for cans and whatnot.....It was $3.99 at Savers...so I tried it out a couple of days ago, and was intrigued...now I could see the back! (by the way I am a shrinking shrimp at what used to be 5'4")....so all the shelves, though they pull out ...its hard to see what is in the back.
So, yesterday, I went to Container Store to look at what else I could find.
I found a bigger variety of organizer ....
And I brought it home to organize another shelf....
This is the top shelf...and I can see almost everything in here. It is all oils, vinegars, rubs and spices in larger jars....
Sorry I didn't show the before...because you would see what a difference it mad. It is still crowded...but more is visible!
I then worked on another shelf....
I also bought this basket, which can stack if you wanted...but I liked is slimmer profile than some of the other baskets out there. I needed to contain the small bags we have that get lost in the cupboard....

This is that shelf now....the basket holds all the little bags that were lost in the cupboard...
It works nicely....and now I know what is there....
I have another shelf that needs a bit of tidying...but it isn't too bad....
That is what happens when that certain light hits the window at our house....
You will never know what gets done....
Have a great and productive day!
Nancy

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The New Baby's Room

I've told you all that we are being blessed with another grand baby soon....
The original due date was something like November 14th, but honestly...I don't think this little boy will wait much longer....maybe a week or two...
So yesterday, I went over and helped my daughter with the Baby's room....
I wanted to share because she is gifted with a design gene...
We had the painter paint the room months ago to her design....and yesterday we put up decals, prints and such...

 This is the main wall as you come into Ryan's room....
Now you see why we paid a painter! Getting the stripe to be straight....was hard...even he had trouble with getting the tape to stick and he's a professional! Then the white paint wouldn't cover...he had to do 4 coats of white and yes, he used primer first....
 This is the quilt I made which we decided needed to be hung....it is on the short wall next to the window.....
 This is the wall where the changing table is...it is the biggest wall. The framed prints were things she printed and got frames from the Dollar store...the decals were from her registry on Amazon...
And here is my daughter, trying to decide whether this balloon or another. Since they are decals they can be moved...she changed the balloon here with a different color so it would pop more....and there will be shelves on this wall that will hold a few books...
The closet will be under construction today...they are taking out the shelf and rod and putting in shelves and a short rod...so we emptied it all out so her hubby could work on it this AM...
See how the stripe from the biggest wall continued onto the other walls?? Such a sweet painter! and then he painted the inside of the closet just to make it fresh.
Can't believe our 3 yr old grandson is going to be a big brother! And soon!!
Have a great day!
Nancy

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Turning Three

I don't know how it happened...it went by so fast!
First you were so little, and now you are three! Mistaken by many to be four because you are so tall and such a chatterbox...Royce my little man....you turned three!!
We went on a duffy boat for your birthday, just for about 90 mins (which is all a three year old can do)....and your Mom and Dad later took you to Beni Hana's for dinner (they had coupons from their birthdays)....
What a lucky boy to have such outgoing and fun parents! It's probably why you talk and are starting to read and know all your numbers....

You with your Mom under one of my quilts.....
 And your wonderful Dad....who keeps going even when he'd rather sleep....

And our captain, my Hubby, your wonderful Grampy!!
You had a great day....Love you!!!
Grammy

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

This Week

This week seems like it was two weeks....
It started off last Monday....our daughter's boyfriend wasn't called to work by the union, so he helped us solve a problem.
We have an outdoor fan, rated for wet, but not waterproof...and last year with all the rain, it got water in it and almost killed it. Our contractor friend, who put it up, came over and fixed it...but couldn't think of a way to solve the issue of water getting in....
So, the boyfriend thought of a "purple martin birdhouse"....like the one out front that he put together for us...
He came up with a plan to make it fit over the 6x6 post and since it was wide enough, the water will just shed away from the fan housing...
Then, before a storm...we will wrap plastic around the fan itself.....
He sealed every hole and seam and it is lots cuter than what I was coming up with....
Cute right??
But then.....
I had gotten my Hubby a gift for his birthday, which he wasn't totally thrilled with....It is from Redline Steel....I love it....but men don't see things the way women do, when it comes to decor....
And I had a different vision of where it should go....but he didn't like that idea, and to be honest, I may have been right as where I wanted to put it, it would have been too small....
Cute huh?? It does fit nicely in this little spot....
It is called the Tree of Life...which given our circumstances made sense.....
And then....
life with Molly....
Well, it's difficult having a puppy...any puppy...and Molly is really a good girl. She is pretty much housebroken....though she has that issue of excitement to see someone....and tinkles....
And she walk very nicely on the leash...hardly ever pulls....
She loves to get in your lap (which I don't encourage on chairs or couches) so I sit on the stoop outside and she cuddles....
She is not my old Belle...but she is pretty special....
The problem has been how rough she is with old Tucker....he hates her biting...which she still does with everyone....
It has been like two separate households...and she is on a leash inside a great deal so we can control her with him around....
What to do?
Well, I found "Bitter Yuck"...it is a spray designed to put on the dog for wounds etc...or furniture or whatever you don't want the dog to chew....
So, I got some and sprayed it all over Tucker, especially on the areas that she goes for....
Now, can we hear angels sing??? Yup, it worked!
Bliss! Tucker was actually smiling!!
Yes, yes, she is going to be big. She is only 4 months old...and she is half his size...yikes....
And in case you wondered, yes I have oodles of toys...all of which she thinks are hers....
She has three right there!
But all in all, she is just a baby....and loves a belly rub....
Yes, you are right, she has black belly and lots of black on her skin elsewhere...a clear marker that somewhere in her genes she has a strong black lab....we think its cute and know that is where the little "streak" comes from. It also we hope makes for a strong healthy lab....
This weekend Molly got to play with another dog...a  Strononi (sp??) named Audrey...at first she was terrified...then got into it ...Audrey is a good first playmate.....
But the funniest part of the week...well it was yesterday.
Molly couldn't annoy Tucker...and the toys were ...well...boring.....
I was taking decorative can off a miniature rose my daughter gave me and she had a new toy! She played with it ...for an hour straight! What fun she had!!
So, life is busy, even for us retired folk...
I am slowed down on quilting because of the puppy and a few other things, but do manage to get them done, though slowly....
So...I hope you have a great great week!!
Nancy

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Goodbye September

Goodbye September, Hello October!
Yesterday was for the most part a lovely day. The sky was foggy in the morning and the clouds cleared beautifully by 12.
Miss Molly got her 4 month check up and final shots, so now she can soon join a class, go to the beach or other fun activities....
I babysat Royce while his Mom went to another baby shower...and yes on of my quilts went with her....
My other daughter and her boyfriend took Hubby to the HB pier where there was an airshow....
While they were getting their hearing destroyed and getting burned to a crisp, I took Royce to a park...I pushed his old stroller the whole way (now that he is 46 lbs)....


We had a good time....he played and played and then I pushed the stroller home. I took the long way in hopes that he would take a nap, but alas, he did not...His mother wasn't pleased with me at all....Though he is almost 3, he still needs a nap...and he has always been difficult to get down for one. Let's hope that baby #2 will not fight sleep....
Today, is again overcast and chilly so far....Fall has settled in
There were geese that flew over day before yesterday and I've noticed some birds that definitely were traveling through.
Hubby has finally started feeling better....after a horrific UTI that gave him a huge fever and headache. Antibiotics are something we take for granted, but save lives....I am glad to have him around.
Well, time to walk Miss Molly
Nancy