Friday, November 27, 2015

Visitor Count Vanished????

I wonder what happened to my visitor map? The count disappeared! There were thousands in the count and the map was full of location spots. Hmmm...... Sad as it was very interesting to see where everyone was from, all over the world!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Panera Going Cage Free

Just a quick note:

I got a brief quote in this article at Forbes

For All Who Celebrate

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Starting from Seed

I like to try starting things from seed. So, I thought I would try my hand at some citrus. My key lime tree is over a year old, and the smaller seedlings are orange trees.

I do seem to be running into a slight problem with the key lime, as you can see, some of the leaves are folding in on themselves. Usually means that something is up with it. Now I have to pin it down.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Drying Sourdough Starter

I have so much extra starter, like 3 quart jars full. When I have to remove some starter from my crock at "feeding time", I hate to throw it away, so I would just put it in jars and stick it in the fridge. I would then use it as back up in case something went wrong with my crock, use for giveaways, etc. However, not many people that I know bake bread, so it builds quickly. And the jars are taking up space.

As a result, I have begun to dry the starter, a jar at a time. It is easy to do. (Pictures below, in order of steps.)

I place parchment paper on a platter or cookie sheet. I then spread a thin layer of starter on it, set in an out of the way place (where no dust is flying and little kitty paws can't disturb), and just let it air dry. (Oven or dehydration heat can affect the yeast.) When THROUGHLY dry,  I then peel off the paper (which you can reuse) and  break into small pieces. You can store in pieces or grind into a powder, which will be what I will do next. Store in dry, airtight jar.

Note that I always make sure that the starter is active before I dry it. So the jar that I am drying the contents of, is kept out of the fridge, and fed once a day (sometimes every other day) until I have dried it all. 

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

It's Alive! (Yay....)

In cleaning out the fridge, I found my sourdough starter. It has been in there for almost a year, but except for a bit of gray on the top (perfectly normal with all that sitting and no feeding), once that was removed all of the dormant starter was perfectly colored. So, I decided to see if it could be resurrected.

I took a few dollops out of the jar with a clean spoon, returned the rest to the fridge and placed the dollops in the crock that I had normally kept going starter in. I fed it twice a day for the last few days (1/2 c flour then 5/8 c water). As you can see , it is coming along beautifully.  I'm planning on some good sourdough rolls soon!

Thursday, August 20, 2015

On Lilacs

It is too bad that lilac season is so early and so short. Not even around for the summer. I have a few lilac trees at 1840's Farm, but perhaps my favorite is the French. I love the color and the scent.

But, did you know that lilacs are edible? I had heard about a few things you could do with them, but hadn't looked too much into it until recently. The one thing that I have not tried as of yet, is a lilac sorbet. I have found that there are also lilac wines, honey, syrup and other things to make with the flower. So, next spring may be a bit busy. However, it will be difficult to cut those flowers off, as I do enjoy seeing them in the yard.