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MY SITE HAS MOVED

Please join me in a new location! My name has changed to Christian Mommy Blogger. I will still have all of my recipes and tips in the kitchen, but on a grander scale! I have a new site (though it is still under construction, please visit anyway because the content is still there)! I could not be more excited. I am very busy with LIFE and my other WORK (though I am a SAHM I also keep my accounting skills fresh by doing select bookkeeping jobs out of my house as well) but am updating my site as I find time. The posts may not come as frequently due to this process, as I am learning a lot about how to set up my site! I hope you enjoy it.

To my current subscribers: You will not be subscribed to the new blog. You will need to click HERE and on the left hand side, enter your email address, and then confirm your subscription. Once you do that, you can unsubscribe to this blog by clicking the “unsubscribe” link on the bottom of the email that you received regarding this post. You do not have to unsubscribe as there will be no additional emails (except for maybe a “reminder” about my site moving in the future). So please be sure to change your subscription so you don’t miss any posts and we can all continue to share together over at Christian Mommy Blogger!

My facebook and twitter locations are the same, though the names have changed. I am now @christmomblog on twitter (though if you were following on twitter, you are still following…only the name has changed! Same for facebook…no need to change, only the name has changed!

This is a very exciting time and I HOPE YOU JOIN ME!

In Him, Nikki

Roma Fresca

Hello all! Happy Monday!

Click here to see the Roma Fresca recipe, or please read on to see why it is not “here”.

I am very excited to share a link with you all. Not like the links I just submitted, but rather a link to my own post on my favorite blog….GNOWFGLINS. I take Wardeh’s eCourse and faithfully follow her blog. She is such a great teacher and is so nice. I am getting to know her through the forums on her site (a service for eCourse members) and look forward to learning more! She has found herself to be very busy lately (I don’t know HOW she does it all!) and I thought, “hey, I have some stuff to share!” So she shared my post on a yummy variation of the classic Salsa Fresca. Click on over to GNOWFGLINSto read my recipe for Roma Fresca! Please leave a comment!

Thank you to my faithful followers!

In Him,

Nikki

Shared @ Traditional Tuesdays Domestically Divine Tuesdays

 

 

Last week the Blogosphere was hopping with fun giveaways, informative posts, and exciting recipes! I would like to provide you (and me) with a simple way to capture all of these fun blog posts in one place. I find great blog posts, you get to see them all together in one place. Perhaps you will even get introduced to a new blog that you have never heard of!

  1. I have to first and foremost share a giveaway from The Healthy Home Economist. I love this site as she simplifies traditional food preparation. She is a WAPF Chapter head and does fun videos to teach the basics…well for some basics you need a starter culture. These can be for Sourdough, Kombucha, Kefir (dairy or water), Cheese, and the list goes on! If you wanted to buy all of these boy would that cost a lot of money! She has partnered up with Cultures for Health to give away some awesome cultures! Click over to the post to find out how you can enter!
  2. Emily over at Recipes To Nourish posted about a fabulous looking chocolate sauce (I can almost taste it through the computer). I am so going to have to try this at home!
  3. Megan over at Maid in Alaska posted a helpful article about 10 Tips to getting your kids to eat healthier. She has some great tips. I like the dip one. We do this with our oldest. If she really doesn’t seem to like something, we give her a little LF Ketchup. It is healthy, nourishing and she loves it. But we do this in moderation. We do not want her to get into the practice of always “needing” a dip.  But it works great for those darn green beans!
  4. Emily over at Butter Believer posted a very interesting article on Lemon Water. I have to say I am very intrigued. Basically, your body is detoxing in the morning – so eating breakfast first thing can mess with the detox and drinking Lemon water can help the detox process. There is much more detail to be found there, so please click on over and read the article. I am going to try it this week (oh, but my coffee :)). {Emily, if you are reading this, I went to your site specifically to give you a shout out – Thanks for linking to my blog twice! I just happened to stumble upon this post and really want to try it out!}
  5. Mindy over at Too Many Jars in my Kitchen posted about natural cleaning ingredients. Those who know me know that I only use natural/organic cleaning (house cleaning and personal grooming) supplies. You can get caught up in “needing” tons of “Natural Cleaning Supplies” and in reality, you are simply missing the simple ingredients that are right in your pantry. I use white vinegar in my laundry ALL the time (cloth diapers people – vinegar is an odor absorber) but loved the recipe on this post about homemade soft scrub. An all natural WHITENER? THANK YOU MINDY! Enjoy reading the article as there are more tips than just what I mentioned.
These are just a few of my links for the week. I will have more to share next Monday on my next Journey through the Blogosphere!
In Him,
Nikki

Oh here it is! Homemade, so digestible, so filling, so fabulous! I found a cereal recipe and modified it to fit my family’s taste buds (we love peanut butter). It is a huge hit. When you try to kick processed foods you may find yourself picking and choosing what to get rid of first. We LOVE cereal in this family and really didn’t want to clean it out of our pantry! If you have read Nourishing Traditions, or follow The Healthy Home Economist than you know that cold breakfast cereal is one of the most toxic items in your pantry and should in fact be one of the first things to go (sigh). Our frown “turned upside down” once we discovered this recipe! I may at some point in the future delve into the cons of cold breakfast cereal, but for now….let’s just learn how to make homemade cereal…so great! Here are the ingredients you will need:

  • 5 cups flour (I use fresh ground soft white wheat or spelt)
  • 3 cups raw milk or yogurt
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3/4 cup coconut oil (in its liquid form)
  • 2 cups natural peanut butter (nothing in the ingredients but peanuts!)
  • 1 cup honey (you can use maple syrup but there is something very classic about peanut butter and honey)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon

Start this in the morning of day 1: combine the flour and milk/yogurt in a mixer bowl. Mix together until well combined. Cover bowl with towel set a plate on top or secure with a rubber band (keeps the fruit flies out). Note, I have found the top dries out more if you do not use a plate, but it is up to you. Leave on counter for 24 hours.

Start this in the morning of day 2: Preheat oven to 350. Mix all of the ingredients into the mixer with the batter and blend until well combined. Pour batter into 2 greased 9×13 pyrex pans. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. You do not want to over bake this should be a very moist coffee cake. 25 minutes is perfect for me. Good luck not eating the coffee cake as it is now. Let cool until you can handle it because you will crumble it onto baking sheets (2 half sheet pans to be exact). Put in a 170 degree oven for 6-8 hours. Check every hour or as needed (maybe every 2) to remove dehydrated pieces on the top and shuffle around as necessary. You are going for chunky Grapenuts. Store in a gallon ziplock bag in the fridge – stays fresh until you run out! Slicing a banana on top or adding raisins (0r both) is our favorite! The beauty of this cereal is you can customize it to your family’s liking. Smaller pieces that stay more firm in the milk, larger pieces that get softer – it is up to you! Optional: Omit peanut butter and add one additional cup of flour plus 1 teaspoon maple flavoring, and 1 cup of maple syrup instead of honey for a tasty cinnamon maple cereal. Follow same assembly/cooking instructions as mentioned above.

Enjoy, and as always, please let me know what you think after making it!

We are in the middle of a fantastic grill season and I simply love these beans as an accompaniment to anything that comes off of the grill – especially a hamburger! This recipe that I came up with happens to be a pork-free variation, but I would definitely throw some bacon in with the onions when I saute them if I had it on hand! These are very easy!

  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 cups cooked beans (white, northern, pinto) (for instructions on cooking beans click here)
  • 1 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 cup organic ketchup
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • sprinkle of nutmeg
  • sprinkle (or more) of sucanat (or brown sugar)
Saute the onions in the butter until translucent (about 5 minutes) in a skillet (I use my cast iron). Add the beans and mix to get them all coated in the butter and onions. Add all remaining ingredients except for sucanat (or brown sugar) and stir well to combine. Heat over low heat while everything else for dinner is cooking (longer is better for more flavor). Add the sucanat (or brown sugar) just before pulling off of the heat. They taste fabulous the next day too!

small change can really make a big change! In this series I will present changes I have made or am currently implementing. These changes make a huge difference in your life and your family’s life. Please leave a comment with your thoughts about this change. What are some big or little changes you are making that you want to share? For other “simple changes” visit the simple changes page here.

The best flour is fresh. What isn’t best when fresh? Fresh baked bread, fresh-baked cookies, fresh out of the dryer sheets, fresh picked fruit and veggies, fresh air! Freshly ground flour has the many nutrients that flour has to offer. You unlock it before your very eyes and get to “harvest” that freshness for use in your freshly baked goods! Just like fresh picked fruits and veggies, the longer they are off the vine (or the longer the flour has been “unlocked”) the more nutrients disappear. How long has the flour been sitting on the store shelves?

No, you do not have to force every bit of food you eat to give you the most nutrients. There are other ways to unlock nutrients. You can use the soaking method or the sourdough method to work with the flour you have to give you really great healthy nutritional bread…but I for one want the food I consume to have as many nutrients as possible. I also want it to be AFFORDABLE. Is grinding your own flour affordable? YES it is. Is there an upfront cost? YES there is. {I won’t delve into the specific costs of every aspect of grinding because there are too many variables and prices are different due to the region you live in.}

Here is my grinding example: I was buying bread, Rudi’s Organic to be specific. For one, there are too many ingredients. I like supporting Colorado businesses (where I am from, not where I currently reside), however, I found this is not the best bread for my family – though the bread is so fabulous and I do love it. I was paying $3.00 a loaf. That is not expensive for bread and it was organic so it really was not a bad deal. However, in keeping with REAL food, there were too many ingredients and I needed another option. Enter – buying whole wheat berries! This is such a cheap alternative. It also allows me to use spelt, buckwheat, rye, soft white wheat, soft red wheat, hard white wheat, hard red, and so on. Buy wheat berries in bulk, grind yourself and voila! You can have a loaf of bread for closer to $0.50 per loaf. Yes, that is right, about a $2.50 per loaf savings (assuming you are able to find good bread as cheap as I can – I live on a military base where everything is cheap!). Not only that but you have opened yourself to the world of sprouting. 

Many recipes call for soaking your flour. This is the process of using a liquid plus an acid (or some believe just warm water will suffice, this is completely up to the individual baker) and soaking the grains (the ground grains) for 7 hours to overnight. However, some recipes do not have the amount of liquid in the ingredients to make soaking possibleso you can sprout! Sprouting your flour breaks down the bad enzymes much like soaking does, but without the addition of liquid. To sprout you soak the berries overnight, and then you rinse them well over the course of a few days until they get a “tail” and you then dry them out and then…you guessed it…you pass them through a grain mill and have freshly ground sprouted flour. Now you can cook with healthy nutritious flour without needing to soak or use sourdough. {For more information on sprouting and soaking I highly recommend checking out the GNOWFGLINS ecourses -very informative and helpful – I am currently enrolled and love them}.

Several options for baking. Unlocking nutrients and utilizing them at their best. Saving money. Wow, this sounds like something I couldn’t pass up! And, I didn’t. We found a Champion Juicer (used on eBay) and the grain mill attachment (new on eBay) for a total of $150.00 (including shipping). For an electric grain mill this price is pretty awesome. Here is the math behind my justification:

Variables:
Store bought 2 loaves of bread per week @ 3.00 per loaf = $6.00 (A)
Champion Juicer plus grain mill attachment = $150.00 (B)
Wheat Berries @ 25 lbs for $20.00 = 100 cups of flour @ $.20 per cup (C)
Average loaf of bread is 2.5 -3 cups per loaf x (C) = $.60 per loaf (D)
Homemade bread 2 loaves per week = (D) x 2 loaves/week = $1.20 (E)
How I use those variables:
(A) – (E) = $4.80 {per week savings by making my own bread}

(B)/$4.80 = 31.25 {number of weeks to “break even” on grain mill}

In under 8 months I will recover the cost of buying a grain mill. This is assuming I only make 2 loaves per week, and I must say, homemade bread does not last that long! I get the option of sprouting my flour. I get more nutritious flour and the grain mills last for years and years (mine is from the 60′s!) so it is a good investment and you get to control when your flour was “unlocked”!

The grain mill (flour grinder, grain grinder, whatever you may call it) is heavy, clunky and you probably don’t want it out on your counter. So here is how I manage to get the best out of my grinder with out grinding flour EVERY TIME I need it…Grind your flour once a month and freeze it. Freezing locks in the nutrients for about a month. It may take you time to figure out how much you need, so for a little while there will be a learning curve. I use approximately 2 gallon sized ziplock bags of flour per month plus some if I do more pancakes/muffins, etc. So at a minimum I do a gallon ziplock bag of ground spelt and a gallon ziplock bag of ground soft white flour. I grind the flour directly into the bag so it minimizes the amount of dust and it keeps me from cleaning a bowl. Mark the type of flour and the date. Get this – “frozen” flour does not need to be brought to room temperature. It doesn’t get stuck together. You can literally use a measuring cup and measure your flour for the recipe right out of the ziplock bag. That is even easier than trying to not make a mess when dealing with a store-bought flour bag or canister that is too small for the measuring cup. Another plus for grinding your own!

So there you have it…my grinding flour routine and why I decided to spring for the upfront costs. Use the formula I have created above (I am an accountant so please in the comments below let me know if this is at all confusing) to plug-in your own variables and you can customize your savings!

Do you have a grain mill? How often do you use it? What one do you use and do you like it? Share!

Blueberry Cream Cheese

Oh how I have ALWAYS loved blueberry cream cheese. I remember growing up, in Denver, going to local bagel shops. I would order a blueberry bagel with blueberry cream cheese! I try to limit (well, I have completely in fact) bagels (and other white flour – but maybe some healthy bagels are in my future) but have found no reason to eliminate or limit at all the blueberry cream cheese – this is healthy, 100% natural and full of amazing enzymes.

If you have not read my post about cream cheese and whey, start there. This is what you do with the finished cream cheese product:

The amounts below depend solely on your amount of cream cheese. If you are like me, you use what is left over (raw milk, yogurt, etc.) and the amount always changes.

  1. Put cream cheese (freshly made or softened) in food processor. Add fresh blueberrys and mix until it is a beautiful blue color.
  2. Using the attachment that lets you add while mixing, drizzle in a bit of maple syrup. Remember, you won’t need much if your blueberries are really sweet!
We love as a dip for crackers (plain of course) and on english muffins or toast.
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