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Showing posts from August, 2007

Wednesday on the Homestead

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We are enjoying a beautifully hot 90 degree day! We have been enjoying our pond today and the kids picked some veggies from the garden that we will have with our dinner tonight. 

Yesterday I spent the whole day in town with the kids. We started by stopping at the vet’s office for another bottle of Frontline for the dog and cats. Fleas seem the worse right now and our litter of barn cats were covered. Sierra had given them a bath but they needed something more. Plus they needed to be wormed and so did Ellie (our Pomeranian).  I had to purchase things for the children too.. some needed shoes and some needed clothes and that was accomplished at a couple different stores… by then it was time for a stop of Starbucks for mom  then it was a stop at Costco for groceries, then the feed store and finally the drive back to the country.. awwww… It was great to get home, unload our things and then splash in the pond to cool off.

Tonight we will be grilling steaks on the bbq. Last night we got home l…

This Weeks Menu

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Sunday
Beef stew
Dinner rolls
Salad

Monday
Baked chicken legs
Garlic roasted potatoes
Coleslaw

Tuesday
Steaks on the grill
Macaroni salad
French bread
Salad or coleslaw

Wednesday
Shrimp linguini
Sautéed zucchini
Salad

Thursday
Pizza rice casserole
Salad

Friday
Chili bean soup
Tortillas and salsa
Salad

Saturday
Sausage rice casserole
Green beans


Desserts on the list
Pineapple cake
Peanut butter pie
Chocolate chip cookies

Breakfasts:
Oats, granola, pancakes, coffee cake, fruit, yogurt, bagels

Lunches: leftovers, sandwiches, soup

Zucchini Coffee Cake

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I am still keeping up with the zucchini that my very nice neighbor brings me. My own plant may be producing soon and I will need to keep the zucchini creativity going! LOL…. One of these blog posts I will gather together all my zucchini recipes and share them with you. But for now, I will share this zucchini coffee cake recipe that I made this morning for the family. I also served fresh organic peaches that I got from my Azure order.. yum, yum!!

Zucchini Coffee Cake
1 ½ cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 ¼ cups oats
1 cup Sucanat
1t baking soda
1t cinnamon
½ t salt
2 cups shredded zucchini
½ cup butter, softened
¼ c yogurt
1t vanilla
2 eggs

Topping:
¾ cup cane juice crystals
½ cup whole wheat pastry flour
½ cup oats
½ t cinnamon
¼ cup butter, softened


This is a very easy coffee cake to make. Combine all of the cake ingredients into your Kitchen Aid or Bosch bowl (or use a mixing bowl and a hand mixer) and blend until it is well combined. The batter will be thick. Spoon and spread this into a 9x13 pan tha…

Tuesday on the Homestead

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I am taking my afternoon break. I have taken the sheets off my bed and I need to go and remake it and move some laundry through. Leanne cleaned up the laundry room so now we can walk in there again LOL.. and Sierra cleaned up the kitchen. I will tackle the dining room and then the house will at least be in nice shape again.

The boys left yesterday to spend the night at their friends house and will be back home today whenever I get up there to get them or their friends mom brings them home.. I will call soon and see what the plan is.

I am working on new daily and weekly schedules to help us ease into the school year. I won’t be starting school until sometime in September so I hope to be better organized by then. Leanne said she was going to get started on her Advanced Math book.. she is my very self directed and self motivated child.. one year she did 2 Saxon math books on her own initiative. Only took one or two weeks off during the summer.    

I am starting to think about schooling as …

This Weeks Menu

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Sunday
Sweet and sour meatballs over brown rice
Salad

Monday
Italian sausages
Macaroni and cheese
Salad

Tuesday
Chicken tacos with all the trimmings

Wednesday
Baked fish
Brown rice pilaf
Zucchini patties

Thursday
Baked spaghetti
Salad

Friday
Spicy beef and beans over brown rice
Tortilla chips and salsa
Salad of some sort

Saturday
Tuna noodle casserole
Salad

Possible desserts to make this week:
Zucchini chocolate cake
Peanut butter pie
Lemon bars

Breakfast Plans (I don’t really plan breakfast for each day, just have a list of what I will be making and pick from that)

Oatmeal
Baked oatmeal
Scrambled eggs (possibly put in ww flour tortillas for breakfast burritos)
Zucchini coffee cake
Oatmeal muffins (made using any leftover oatmeal)
Fruit smoothies

Lunches are typically leftovers, sandwiches or soups and homemade bread and I often make fruit smoothies to go with whatever our lunch is

Fruit Smoothies
I have several recipes for these but most often I take whatever type of fruit I have on hand (bananas, peaches (canned peach…

Zucchini Cheese Chowder

I made this last night to go with our dinner. It was delicious! Another great use for the abundance of zucchini this time of year!

Zucchini Cheese Chowder
Crystal Miller

6 cups zucchini (or any type of summer squash) cubes (no need to peel, just get rid of the seeds and cut into cubes)
1 large onion, cut up
½ cup butter
6 cups milk
6 T cornstarch
4 chicken bouillon cubes
6 cups cheddar cheese
Extra milk to thin to desired consistency

Sautee zucchini and onion in butter. Mix cornstarch with milk. When vegetables are done cooking add cornstarch/milk and bouillon cubes. Add cheese and cook until mixture thickens. Stir and let it gently boil for about a minute. Salt and pepper to taste. If chowder is too thick you can thin it down with added milk. Taste and readjust seasonings. 

Making Homemade Jam

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In this current months newsletter I wrote about making homemade jam. I have expanded on this topic and also posted lots of how-to pictures for anyone wanting more information. 

I have also included the recipe (with pictures) on making zucchini jam (scroll to the end of the jam page for a link to the recipe page).

Here is the link: http://www.thefamilyhomestead.com/makejam.htm

Thursday on the Homestead

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I woke up this morning thinking it was Wednesday and it was not until I got back from taking Emily to her babysitting job that it dawned on me it was actually Thursday! Once again the days have just been flying by. I have been super busy, right at home. 

I have done a lot of baking, soap making and house work and that has just consumed my days. With my girls gone for most of the last 7 or 8 days it also tends to make my days much busier as the younger kids and I help with their animal chores and house chores.

Leanne arrived home this morning from her 7 day house sitting/lady watching job. She said Miss Margaret was even more forgetful than before which made her a little sad. But her kids left her a note telling her where they had gone and Leanne said that helped a lot.. since she has almost no short term memory, she read the note every day as if it was the first and it seemed to bring her a lot of comfort. Leanne also said she has had enough Skip-Bo for some time now! LOL.. Miss Margare…

Whole Wheat Oat Dinner Rolls

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I made these tonight for dinner. I found the original recipe in my new cookbook The Best of Mennonite Fellowship Meals.. but I did a bit of tweaking to the recipe and assembled a little differently than had been stated. The family ate almost all of them, so I would say they were a hit!

Whole Wheat Oat Dinner Rolls (makes 24 rolls)
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2 1/3 cups water
1 cup oats
3T butter
2 T yeast
2/3 cup Sucanat (can use brown sugar)
1 ½ t salt
3 cups whole wheat flour
2 cups unbleached white flour

Bring water to a boil and add oats and butter. Let set until it has cooled to lukewarm. In a mixer bowl combine water/oat mixture, yeast, Sucanat, salt and stir. Add whole wheat flour and mix. Add remaining unbleached flour until the dough no longer sticks to the sides of the mixer bowl and you have a nice soft dough. Knead the dough for 5 to 8 minutes. Let this rest and rise for 30 to 45 minutes. 

Punch down and divide the dough into 24 pieces. Roll each piece and place in 2- 9x13 pans that have been sprayed with non…

Thursday on the Homestead

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Wow.. Thursday already! Where has my week gone?  Two days were spent in town. One day was spent with Tobin and the other with Leanne and Sierra. Tobin and I had errands to run and he needed to pick up a few things for our current projects. We ended up near our old neighborhood back in the city. We drove by our old house and then went and had lunch at our favorite neighborhood restaurant. It was a lot of fun spending time just reminiscing about life back then. We were so busy fixing up our fixer-upper and had a few of our babies in that house. Sweet memories for sure, but we were also happy to leave the city behind and come home to our older children and enjoy the blessings of today. 

Yesterday I went grocery shopping with Leanne and Sierra and stopped at a place that sells local produce. I picked up some corn on the cob, pickling cukes, a melon, and some dill. Then I went to my regular grocery store and to Costco. In the evening I went and dropped Leanne off at her house sitting job. S…

This Weeks Menu

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Sunday
Taco soup
Crackers
Salad

Monday
Black bean sloppy joes
Corn on the cob

Tuesday
Crockpot chicken and gravy
Brown rice pilaf
Veggies

Wednesday
Hamburgers on the grill
Potato salad

Thursday
Baked fish
Laurie’s macaroni and cheese
Salad

Friday
Baked chicken legs
Carrot raisin salad
Homemade dinner rolls or French bread

Saturday
Mexican hamburger rice bake
Salad

Friday on the Homestead

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What a busy week it has been! We have been doing a bit of remodel work on our house and doing things outside, like laying in drain pipe for the gutters. With 75 to 100 inches of rain a year, you have to have a way of dealing with all that water that falls on the roof! Tobin gave Jacob the job of digging the trenches and laying the pipe. It has been a great job for him. He has had to use muscle strength and utilize his math skills (brain strength ) so that the pipe had the right amount of down hill slope to it. Then he laid the pipe and had put all the bends and t’s and clean out spots. He has enjoyed this job and has not minded a way to make some extra money and Tobin has been able to concentrate on other things.

We are replacing windows on the south side of our house, and doing repair on our deck. The windows are all on order and we are excited for them to come in. When it is all done we will replace some siding and paint. Tobin and I have been having a lot of discussions on paint co…

Graham Cracker Questions Answered

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I wanted to address a couple of questions about my last post on making homemade graham crackers..

One lady asked why there was no graham flour in them.. well graham flour is whole wheat flour. They remove the germ and the bran, grind it a bit differently (more coarsely) and add it back in.  So it gives it a slightly different texture. Something I don’t miss when I use regular whole wheat flour.  I am sure grocery store graham crackers are much more refined than this.

Another question was if you could make them from hard wheat. Technically yes. I don’t use hard wheat except for making bread. I prefer the lightness of the pastry flour for all my non-yeasted baking. But you could try it and see what you prefer.

Someone else asked about freezing the crackers. I have never done it so I don’t know. Ours just get eaten to quick or used for baking, they never make it to the freezer.  But if you do experiment and freeze them and it does turn out fine (or not).. let me know! 

And Margaret, thanks f…