As I try to become more efficient at teaching myself to cook, shop locally, use fresh organic produce and cook handmade meals, I am searching for all the tools I need to make it a little easier. I am currently looking for the best way to store my ever growing recipe collection. I don’t think the index cards my Mom used will work for me… too many print outs from the internet and magazine pages. But I will explore and see what solutions I come up with. If you have any great ideas, please post them to our Flickr Group account or leave a comment.
This Monday, we are sharing some excellent tips for summer that are brought to you by Strawberry Hedgehog. I came across this blog, Strawberry Hedgehog: Musings of a Vegan Crafter, a few weeks ago and can’t stop going back to get more recipes, DIY projects and soap!
Reposted with permission from http://strawberryhedgehog.com/
If you read this blog or know me at all you know I am a fiend for chocolate with peanut butter. I constantly check the Newman’s Own dark chocolate peanut butter cups ingredients to see if they’ve finally come to their senses and omitted dairy from their recipe. I adore Uncle Eddie’s chocolate chip peanut butter cookies and I cannot get enough of the dark chocolate peanut butter by Peanut Butter and Co. My wonderful friend, Kelly, and my super awesome brother in law, Aron, came over today to help us out (thanks, guys!!). They worked hard helping us pull weeds and get our yard in shape and to repay them I made them lunch. After lunch Kelly suggested we make one of our friend, Beth’s, excellent easy recipes. I just so happened to have the simple three ingredients necessary and so we made frozen chocolate-peanut butter banana bites for dessert! Perfect for a warm day working in the yard or really any time at all!
frozen chocolate-peanut butter banana bites
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
chunky natural peanut butter
Put some tinfoil or wax paper out on a plate. Microwave the chocolate in a pyrex cup for about a minute and stir vigorously until smooth (or you can use a double boiler). Slice the bananas into ~1 inch slices, put a dollup of peanut butter on top to cover the top of the banana slice and then drizzle, or if you like more chocolate like I do, glop some chocolate on top. Put them in the freezer for a while, they are great when they are just cold if you are impatient as the chocolate firms up almost immediately but they are also wonderful completely frozen. Beth has the best ideas! Hooray for brilliant friends who love food as much as I do.
It’s not just for drinking, folks! Whether you’re a coffee drinker or not you can benefit from the healthful (that’s right, healthful!) perks of coffee. For years coffee had a bad rep for having negative health effects but those days are gone! Now we recognize that the delicious flavor and caffeine buzz are not all bad and that in moderation it can do us loads of good.
“Coffee appears to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, heart disease, diabetes mellitus type 2, cirrhosis of the liver, and gout, but it increases the risk of acid reflux and associated diseases. Some health effects of coffee are due to its caffeine content, as the benefits are only observed in those who drink caffeinated coffee, while others appear to be due to other components. For example, the antioxidants in coffee prevent free radicals from causing cell damage.” from wikipedia
Coffee has made its way into cosmetics in the recent years for its hefty caffeine content. Caffeine is purported to have all sorts of advantageous effects on the skin from tightening, increasing circulation, and defeating every woman’s arch nemesis, cellulite. The three ways you can pep up your morning with coffee, without drinking a drop are by using them on your skin!
1. Perk up the AM shower with coffee infused soap.
Coffee grounds are amazing at removing stubborn scents like garlic or onion on your hands where nothing else will work. They are also an amazing natural exfoliant making these bars super scrubby and leaving your skin soft and rejuvenated. Plus the scents of vanilla, chocolate, hazlenut, and coffee in the tan colored mochaccino will bring you comfort while the uplifting scents of citrus and mint along with coffee in the mintaccino will brighten your mood and boost your energy.
The set is no longer available but mintaccino is sold year round atstrawberryhedgehog.com..
2. Make your own coffee scrub to exfoliate, soften, and improve circulation.
homemade coffee scrub
1 part coffee grounds (freshly ground or immediately after brewing)
1 part raw sugar
1 part vegetable based oil
* optional essential oil or extract
Mix the coffee grounds with the raw turbinado sugar to create the coarse base for your scrub then add enough oil to saturate your mix. You can use any type of vegetable based oil you have on hand. Once blended together you can use this in the shower on damp skin by applying it in circular motions toward the heart, focusing particularly on cellulite or rough patches. This is ridiculously good fun but it makes quite a mess so be prepared to do a serious rinse of your shower when you’re done and laughing maniacally while you rub coffee all over your body is good for the spirit. :c) Rinse completely and pat dry.
3. Make your own coffee-cocoa face mask.
coffee-cocoa face mask
1 part finely ground coffee
1 part cocoa powder
1 part ground oats
2 parts almond milk
Tighten pores, soften skin, and boost circulation with a simple coffee mask. Put the cocoa, ground coffee, and oats in the coffee grinder until as fine as possible. In a bowl mix the powders with the almond milk. Apply it to clean skin on your face and allow it to sit for 10-15 minutes. Rinse off with warm water and a wash cloth. This will stain your clothing and towels so be careful. :c)
I love to walk around the Ferry Building. The building is amazing. The Bay is amazing. The food is AMAZING! One of my favorite places there is Far West Fungi. They have a wonderful selection of mushrooms. Most of them I have never seen before in the wild and certainly not in the grocery store. They have so many California wild mushrooms as well as others from around the world; both dried and fresh. Some of their other products include, truffle oils and butter, dressings, sauces, medicinals and ice cream. Yummers. I have even seen Fiddlehead ferns there. (Don’t know what to do with those yet. But it is on my list.)
For more information like nutritional values, what the farm is like, fungi facts, etc. check out the above links to get you started.
Wild Mushroom Calendar
If you love mushrooms, an inexpensive way to get them is to just grow your own. You can also start your own larger mushroom logs in your back yard! Watch this short instructional video that shows how to inoculate a log with spore plugs. Shitake sushi anyone?
I definately find myself making my own things more often and repurposing items. It has become more than trying to save money. It is a great creative outlet and I feel good when I complete a project. Making unique gifts has especially given me a lot of pleasure. This Monday, we are sharing with you a fun DIY project brought to you by One Pearl Button, a charming craft, fashion and photography blog written by Alli Lucy. Every season needs an apron. What better way to make that Rhurbarb Almond Coffee Cake than sporting this cute little Tea Towel Apron that you crafted all by yourself!
Please go check out One Pearl Button for other great DIY projects like leather and lace bangles. You can also check out Alli’s etsy shop for dreamy polaroids.
or email email@example.com.
Total eggs: 971
Total honey (lbs): 48
Total Milk produced (gallons): 64.16
Total Meat (lbs): 167.06 lbs
Harvested Produce (lbs): 821.88 lbs
Total Savings : $3,885.95