It’s time for Spring Babies again

Aspen, pictured above, was the first lamb born on the farm last year.  It was a busy and exciting time.  I have been so busy, in fact, that I haven’t had time for much of anything other than taking care of livestock, making soap, and working……

I think I’ve figured out a plan to keep all this social media rolling along and get all my work done.

 

Maple Apple Crumble

I had some left over apples and my husband loves apple crumble (he’s english).  After perusing the cupboard to make sure all ingredients were available, they were, I saw the maple syrup and thought, huh? Why not.  This is not your store bought maple syrup.  This is homemade, from the U.P., Maple Syrup.  So I was gonna put it in the crumble.apple crumble stuff

PreHeat oven to 375F (bake for 45 minutes)

Ingredients:

1/3 cup flour
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup regular oats
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon (I use less (again, my husband is english, he doesn’t like cinnamon)
1/4 cup chilled butter, cut into small pieces
Dash salt
7 medium sliced peeled apples (I like tart apples and used Granny Smith, Pink Lady’s are good too)
1/4 cup maple syrup
dash ground cinnamon
Add flour, brown sugar, oats, cinnamon, salt, and chilled butter to bowl. Cut in butter with pastry blender or two knives until mixture is crumbly.
dry crumble
Place cut and peeled apples in large bowl, mix in 1/4 cup maple syrup and dash of cinnamon until well coated.
chopped apples
Lightly grease casserole dish or deep dish pie (I used crisco).  Place apples evenly in bottom of dish, then distribute crumble mixture on the top.
uncooked crumble
Bake at 375F for 45 minutes. Enjoy!
apple crumble

I love Biscuits

I needed to use up the buttermilk from the butter making, so biscuits it was.  I cheated and used a mix.  Loveless Cafe biscuits are the best, THE BEST! So if you are ever anywhere near Nashville, be sure to stop in there for some of the best biscuits and chicken around.  I used their mix to make biscuits and the rest of my butter and some fresh jam, yum!

A homemade version of a biscuit mix is here: http://chickensintheroad.com/cooking/quick-mix-biscuits-muffins-and-pancakes/

There are also some other great recipes at her website.

 

 

Homemade butter

Everything is better with butter!

Start with a pint of the freshest heavy cream you can find.  I get mine from the local dairy.  Bring to room temperature and add a pinch of salt.

I make it in the blender.  It is cheating, but it works for me.  I have tried the large mason jar way and shook it like crazy for 20 minutes.  My arms were killing me.  If all my kids are home, we can pass it around and it’s not so bad.  Be sure to use a large jar and shake it until it separates (you will know when this happens, there will be a lump of butter and liquid). It’s like magic.

If you use a blender it will take about 5 minutes.  I put mine on pulse (it’s not a very powerful machine).  It will get thick like whip cream, then it will become so thick you will have to pulse it and then use a rubber spatula to stir it before you pulse it again.  After a few minutes of this you will see it start to separate.  Once you see small lumps mixed with liquid pour into a strainer to separate butter from buttermilk.

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I pour into a clean large weave washcloth that lines a colander
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The buttermilk can be used for pancakes

I squeeze out as much buttermilk as I can before “washing” the butter in cold water.

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Place the butter in very cold water, rinse and squeeze until water is fairly clear. Change to fresh water after every rinse.

Place butter in a nice glass jar or pot and keep in refrigerator for up to a week, if you don’t eat it all by then.  Enjoy!

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Urban Craft Fair

Went to a fantastic Urban Craft Fair this weekend.  It was amazing how talented the vendors were.  There were so many unique (and strange) items.  From handmade granny panties with anything from cats to Bill Murray printed on them, to beautiful hand drawn cards, organic beard wax (this seemed to be a very popular item) and handmade “monster” stuffed animals for kids.  I normally do not enjoy craft shows, but this one was extraordinary.  It was billed as an “indie” craft show.  I love buying local, if I can, and this was a great way to start my holiday shopping.  It was like a giant Etsy store filled with amazing things.

Banana Bread with Chocolate Chips

I seem to have extra bananas lately.  For some reason they aren’t getting eaten as fast as they used to.  This recipe is easy (they way I like it).

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 large ripe bananas smashed
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 cups flower
  • dash salt
  • 1/2 bag of mini chocolate chips (or any chopped chocolate)
  • nuts of your choice (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F.  Cream butter and sugar, add eggs and beat. Add bananas and vanilla, beat.  Stir dry ingredients together in another bowl and then gently mix into banana mixture. Blend in chocolate, and then fold in nuts, if desired (my family does NOT desire).

Bake at 350F for 50-55 minutes for large loaf, check center is fairly dry with toothpick, knife, etc.  If not, add a couple minutes at a time until cooked through. Be careful not to overcook.

Makes one large loaf pan or 4 small loaf pans (fill to half full in pan).

Enjoy with butter!!!

banada bread slice