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29 April 2011

Flaxseed Goo

The weirdest thing happens when flaxseeds get wet, they make the water turn into something like mucus. It has a super gross texture and it is nearly impossible to get rid of.  But I've heard that you can use ground flaxseeds mixed with water as an egg replacer in vegan baking, and soaking the whole seeds is supposed to make them easier to digest. But you have to admit, it's pretty gross.

28 April 2011

"Pigs in a Blanket"

Does anyone know a clever name for vegetarian pigs in a blanket? I can't think of one, and from my quick internet search, it seems that no one else has either. These were my Lovemuffin's idea, but somehow I ended up making them. The "pigs"are the Tofurky Italian Sausages, the ones with the tomato and basil. I cut them in half and the bread is Trader Joe's herbed pizza dough. I rolled them in semolina flour to make it easy to take them off the baking pan.

no pig in these blankets

14 April 2011

Gnarly Sourdough

I made this sourdough bread last night as part of an attempt to develop a very basic, easy sourdough loaf that I can throw together any time. It tastes pretty darn good, but it sure is ugly. First of all, I had the hardest time getting it to rise without letting the outside of the dough get dry and crusty, so when I formed the loaf, a lot of crusty dry dough got incorporated inside, so it has some weird bubbles and folds. But the weirdest thing is that the crust did not turn brown in the oven. The outside of the bread is exactly the color shown in the picture, it isn't just some weird lighting problem. Does anyone out there have any idea why a loaf of bread does not turn brown when baking? It has honey and whole wheat flour in it, so it should definitely have browned a little bit more than it did. 

11 April 2011

Green Mashed Potatoes

Green potatoes with sautéed veggies  

This is a pretty brilliant way I discovered to get myself and  Lovemuffin to eat greens, the really healthy greens, like kale, swiss chard, and mustard greens. I have tried it with all three of those types of greens, and I personally prefer it with kale, the flavor and color and texture seem the best with kale. And a little extra butter never hurts. They are perfect for Saint Patrick's Day, or for whenever you need something to do with potatoes besides making them boring white and fluffy. 

Green Mashed Potatoes
7-8 good sized russet potatoes
1 bunch kale, chard, or mustard greens, or any other sturdy greens of your choice
1 onion, chopped (optional, but highly recommended)
2-3 cloves garlic, minced (optional, but highly recommended)
Grated cheese to taste, such as parmesan, asiago, romano, pecorino, or a combination
Butter, Milk, Salt and Pepper to taste

Peel and chop potatoes, start boiling them in well salted water. While that is starting, rinse and chop the greens, discarding or chopping thick stems finely. Add the chopped greens to the potatoes, let it all boil together until the potatoes are tender enough for mashing.
While the potatoes are cooking, sauté the chopped onion in a little oil, if desired, adding the garlic when they are mostly soft and translucent. Set aside to add to the mashed potatoes later.
Drain the cooked potatoes and greens, and then mash with milk and butter and cheese until it is the desired consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste, add the onions, if using. Serve with a little extra butter and/or cheese on top.

05 April 2011

A New Toy

Last week Motherdear sent me an awesome food dehydrator (Thank you thank you thank you!!!) so this weekend we made all sorts of things. We dried some fruit, made yogurt, and made a fruit and yogurt leather that was pretty good, but sort of weird. Lovemuffin says he is going to try to make jerky this week, and I would like to make yogurt covered granola as a snack.

Dried pineapple was the best, although strawberries were a close second, and blueberries were the other close second. We discovered that blueberries will dry just fine from frozen, which is great because we have discovered a really cheap source of frozen blueberries.

We are going to be making a lot of yogurt because we can make twice as much as the tub we usually buy for half the price, and it tastes so good! So fresh! And we use a lot of yogurt in our house, so it definitely won't go to waste. I was going to share with you a recipe for muffins that uses yogurt, but I tried it this morning and I apparently can't get it to rise correctly, so maybe later. In the meantime, here are some pictures to make you jealous.

the beautiful Excalibur food dehydrator

Lovemuffin preparing the fruit/yogurt leather snack

delicious yogurt ready to be made into a delicious smoothie

Some of the dried fruits and snacks, we already ate a lot :)