Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Refreshing the Yogurt Culture

While I usually just keep it going, every so often I need to buy new cultures and refresh my yogurt. I've done so recently with great success. Again, it's creamy and smooth.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Homemade Ketchup

I've attempted for a second time homemade ketchup. We'll see how it turns out, but it does look beautiful in the jar. It's just as cheap as regular ketchup, but without the nonsense. I lacto-fermented it in my yogurt maker yesterday afternoon. I'll allow it to mature before tasting it.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Roast Chicken

I love roast chicken for supper. Tonight I get a special treat - the whole thing for myself. Not that I'm going to eat it all. The children will want pizza, since the Vintner is working late. The Vintner will pick up fast food on the way home. I'll eat the roast chicken, buttered rice and asparagus all by myself, and I quite like it that way. No one else to say, "Eeeew."

Friday, April 2, 2010

Good Friday

Today's menu is hot cross buns and tea for breakfast (more for the children.) Bigoli con salsa for mom and creamy pasta for the children. Supper will be risotto and fish for mom, hot wings for dad, and kiddie fish filets and french fries for the children.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Our Last Soup

It's our last soup of the season today. After this week, it will be too warm to cook for hours on the stove. We'll make it extra special with chicken meat, veggies and matzo balls. Yum!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Yogurt on Tuesday

Yesterday was too busy, even for yogurt. This afternoon, I should get some time to get it started. It's hard to miss it for breakfast, but eggs will have to do today. I'm not tied to Food Factory Monday; it's just easier than on other days. Plus, it starts the week off right.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Last of the Stock Days

As spring warms up, we won't be making stock every Monday. Today is a half pot of chicken stock. We'll use up odd bits, and go by the weather as to how many, if any, days we have left before summer season. We won't make stock after Easter until the weather turns cool again after Michaelmas.

We don't need yogurt this week; I still have plenty. We will be frosting the cookies from Saturday, and making treats for the Vintners lunch bag.

Friday, February 26, 2010

A Simple Fish Supper

Tonight's Ember Day observance is much easier than Wednesday's. There is no conflict. We'll have a simple fish fillet supper, with potatoes and possibly green peas. It's easy to cook and pleases the children, although not the Vintner. I imagine he'll get some fast food on the way home.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Chicken Liver and Rice

It's so simple, just adding cooked, chopped liver to rice, but oh so good. I generally don't like liver on it's own, but I do like it in other foods. I always add pureed liver to my gravies. I adore liver sausages and spreads on bread. However, today's menu includes a simple rice dish with the added iron and vitamins from the liver - just what an expectant mother needs. Oh, and I gently fry the liver in real butter, but not overcook it prior to adding it to the rice.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Feasting on Fish Cakes

I struggle without the true guidance of a minister as to how to feast or fast today. As is, we will lunch on delicious home made soup, and sup on fish cakes. I've never made fish cakes as an adult, so this will be a turn down memory lane, kitchen-wise, as we journey towards new territory faith-wise.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Food Factory Day

We've got yogurt and chicken stock on the kitchen agenda for today. Yum! I love the smell of Mondays in our kitchen. Then, we're set up for easy eating during the week.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Shrove Tuesday

Today we feast on pancakes, but without the wildness of others. It's a busy day of library story time, entertaining friends, and errands. Plus, with two young ones and another on the way, our family is not interested in the wildness that can occur today.

Shrove Tuesday

I WILL love thee, O LORD, my strength. * The LORD is my stony rock, and my defence;

My Saviour, my God, and my might, in whom I will trust; * my buckler, the horn also of my salvation, and my refuge.

I will call upon the LORD, which is worthy to be praised; * so shall I be safe from mine enemies.

The sorrows of death compassed me, * and the overflowings of ungodliness made me afraid.

The pains of hell came about me; * the snares of death overtook me.

In my trouble I called upon the LORD, * and complained unto my God:

So he heard my voice out of his holy temple, * and my complaint came before him; it entered even into his ears.

The earth trembled and quaked, * the very foundations also of the hills shook, and were removed, because he was wroth.

There went a smoke out in his presence, * and a consuming fire out of his mouth, so that coals were kindled at it.

He bowed the heavens also, and came down, * and it was dark under his feet.

He rode upon the Cherubim, and did fly; * he came flying upon the wings of the wind.

He made darkness his secret place, * his pavilion round about him with dark water, and thick clouds to cover him.

At the brightness of his presence his clouds removed; * hailstones and coals of fire.

The LORD also thundered out of heaven, and the Highest gave his thunder; * hailstones and coals of fire.

He sent out his arrows, and scattered them; * he cast forth lightnings, and destroyed them.

The springs of waters were seen, and the foundations of the round world were discovered, * at thy chiding, O LORD, at the blasting of the breath of thy displeasure.

He sent down from on high to fetch me, * and took me out of many waters.

He delivered me from my strongest enemy, and from them which hate me; * for they were too mighty for me

They came upon me in the day of my trouble; * but the LORD was my upholder.

He brought me forth also into a place of liberty; * he brought me forth, even because he had a favour unto me.

vs 21 The LORD rewarded me after my righteous dealing, * according to the cleanness of my hands did he recompense me.

Because I have kept the ways of the LORD, * and have not forsaken my God, as the wicked doth.

For I have an eye unto all his laws, * and will not cast out his commandments from me.

I was also uncorrupt before him, * and eschewed mine own wickedness.

Therefore the LORD rewarded me after my righteous dealing, * and according unto the cleanness of my hands in his eyesight.

With the holy thou shalt be holy, * and with a perfect man thou shalt be perfect.

With the clean thou shalt be clean, * and with the froward thou shalt be froward.

For thou shalt save the people that are in adversity, * and shalt bring down the high looks of the proud.

Thou also shalt light my candle; * the LORD my God shall make my darkness to be light.

For in thee I shall discomfit an host of men, * and with the help of my God I shall leap over the wall.

The way of God is an undefiled way: * the word of the LORD also is tried in the fire; he is the defender of all them that put their trust in him.

For who is God, but the LORD? * or who hath any strength, except our God?

It is God that girdeth me with strength of war, * and maketh my way perfect.

He maketh my feet like harts' feet, * and setteth me up on high.

He teacheth mine hands to fight, * and mine arms shall bend even a bow of steel.

vs 36 Thou hast given me the defence of thy salvation; * thy right hand also shall hold me up, and thy loving correction shall make me great.

Thou shalt make room enough under me for to go, * that my footsteps shall not slide.

I will follow upon mine enemies, and overtake them; * neither will I turn again till I have destroyed them.

I will smite them, that they shall not be able to stand, * but fall under my feet.

Thou hast girded me with strength unto the battle; * thou shalt throw down mine enemies under me.

Thou hast made mine enemies also to turn their backs upon me, * and I shall destroy them that hate me.

They shall cry, but there shall be none to help them; * yea, even unto the LORD shall they cry, but he shall not hear them.

I will beat them as small as the dust before the wind: * I will cast them out as the clay in the streets.

Thou shalt deliver me from the strivings of the people, * and thou shalt make me the head of the nations; a people whom I have not known shall serve me.

As soon as they hear of me, they shall obey me; * the strangers shall feign obedience unto me.

The strangers shall fail, * and come trembling out of their strongholds.

The LORD liveth; and blessed be my strong helper, * and praised be the God of my salvation;

Even the God that seeth that I be avenged, * and subdueth the people unto me.

It is he that delivereth me from my cruel enemies, and setteth me up above mine adversaries: * thou shalt rid me from the wicked man.

For this cause will I give thanks unto thee, O LORD, among the Gentiles, * and sing praises unto thy Name.

Great prosperity giveth he unto his King, * and showeth loving-kindness unto David his anointed, and unto his seed for evermore.

The First Lesson

Genesis 18:20

And the Lord said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous; I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto me; and if not, I will know. And the men turned their faces from thence, and went toward Sodom: but Abraham stood yet before the Lord. And Abraham drew near, and said, Wilt thou also destroy the righteous with the wicked? Peradventure there be fifty righteous within the city: wilt thou also destroy and not spare the place for the fifty righteous that are therein? That be far from thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right? And the Lord said, If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes. And Abraham answered and said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord, which am but dust and ashes: Peradventure there shall lack five of the fifty righteous: wilt thou destroy all the city for lack of five? And he said, If I find there forty and five, I will not destroy it. And he spake unto him yet again, and said, Peradventure there shall be forty found there. And he said, I will not do it for forty's sake. And he said unto him, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak: Peradventure there shall thirty be found there. And he said, I will not do it, if I find thirty there. And he said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord: Peradventure there shall be twenty found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for twenty's sake. And he said, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak yet but this once: Peradventure ten shall be found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for ten's sake. And the Lord went his way, as soon as he had left communing with Abraham: and Abraham returned unto his place.

The Second Lesson

St. Mark 10:1-16

And he arose from thence, and cometh into the coasts of Judaea by the farther side of Jordan: and the people resort unto him again; and, as he was wont, he taught them again. And the Pharisees came to him, and asked him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife? tempting him. And he answered and said unto them, What did Moses command you? And they said, Moses suffered to write a bill of divorcement, and to put her away. And Jesus answered and said unto them, For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept. But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife; And they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. And in the house his disciples asked him again of the same matter. And he saith unto them, Whosoever shall put away his wife, and marry another, committeth adultery against her. And if a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery. And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them. But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein. And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them.

The Collect


O LORD, who hast taught us that all our doings without charity are nothing worth; Send thy Holy Ghost, and pour into our hearts that most excellent gift of charity, the very bond of peace and of all virtues, without which whosoever liveth is counted dead before thee. Grant this for thine only Son Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.


For Shrove Tuesday, we're making crepes according to our new soaking method. We soak the flour in the milk with a touch of live-culture whey prior to cooking, ideally overnight. Then, just prior to cooking we add the melted butter and eggs. The results are so good, that I don't think I'll be going back to the quick soak of 20 minutes prior to cooking any time soon.

Monday, February 1, 2010

A Busy Weekend of Lacto-Fermenting

On Saturday, I resumed lacto-fermenting with vigor. Two beverages - a second attempt at lemonade - yogurt, kedgeree, crepe batter took over my kitchen. The crepes were perfect; I finally discovered the "secret" is the traditional method of soaking the flour overnight in milk and live-culture whey. It was perfectly bubbly and sublime Sunday morning. So easy and quick in the morning! For late morning, we had kedgree: the best I've ever made. Again, soaking overnight in whey is the secret for both easier and better results. The beverages should be ready to sample today. Also, I baked a loaf of long-rise sourdough. I can't commend enough the traditional method of lacto-fermenting. How much we have lost in our modern kitchens by abandoning the super-secret!

Today would be the day for the food factory, but we'll be out and about with first of the month errands. Conveniently, I made the yogurt on Saturday, and will just skip making stock today.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Budget and Semi-Fasting Night

While I make a concerted effort to fast - that is, go meet free or pro-fish - on Fridays, I think of Wednesdays as a secondary fast. It conveniently works out well budget-wise, too. Since I do shopping on Thursdays, I've usually run out of fresh meat by Wednesday. We often have spaghetti or another meat-free meal. While I'd prefer a bit more nutritious supper, budgeting does not allow for my dreams as of yet. I don't quite mind, and I do enjoy happy children. They'd be pleased with every night of spaghetti or pizza. I know that there are nutritious, delicious meals that are meat-free and budget friendly; however, my guys won't eat those. There's never a shortage of challenges for the homemaker in the kitchen.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Slapdash Liptauer

I adore Liptauer, the Austro-Hungarian spread for bagels and such. Often, I don't have all the ingredients or the time to make it. Instead, I'll spread toast with yoghurt cheese and sprinkle smoked paprika, English mustard powder and caraway seeds on top. It's not quite the same - and definitely missing the zing of cornichon - but it will do in a pinch. For a busy morning breakfast, it's certainly more satisfying than buttered toast.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Sunday Dinner

Yesterday, we entertained friends with an old-fashioned, proper Sunday dinner: roast beef, roast potatoes, green beans, gravy and English mustard. The first course was beef broth and dessert was sticky toffee pudding. In a hustle and bustle world, it's lovely to remember and enjoy these types of meals (even if the vintner does like eating it.)

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

So Far, So Good

I really enjoyed making the puff pastry, much to my surprise yesterday. We'll see if it's any good. My attempt to buy almond meal for the filling was unsuccessful, so I'll seek again this morning. I do know a place that sells it reasonably, but it's quite a drive. We need to get out to get more milk this morning anyway, so we might as well stock up before the big cold front comes in tonight. We should have time for much baking and stewing and simmering over the next few cold days. Oh, and enjoying King Cake, of course!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Puff Pastry

I'm attempting making puff pastry from scratch. I'm partly excited; partly terrified. This is one of the steps from an intermediate cook to advanced. Plus, I'm making it for King Cake for tomorrow. I can always buy one; they're easy to find. If it fails, I'm covered.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Beans and Greens

Today is a day of warm comforting foods with beans and spinach. I'll also make a lentil soup for supper to go with some leftovers. We've been enjoying the seasonal foods.