Saturday, 23 November 2013
What are your favourite winter foods and recipes?
Tuesday, 15 October 2013
I hope you like my mother's delicious chocolate zucchini cake!
Chocolate Zucchini Cake
1/2 c. butter, softened
4 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 c. sour cream
1 chocolate fudge cake with pudding in mix (18.25g)
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 c. grated zucchini
1 c. chocolate chips
1 c. chopped pecans
Mix ingredients with electric mixer. Grease and flour bundt pan or 10" tube pan. Bake at 325 for 40-50 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool on rack 15 minutes, then invert on a serving plate to continue cooling. Frost when cool if you want.
Monday, 9 September 2013
I've already got apple pies coming out our ears, and with a new school job (yay!) I don't have much time anymore for putting up the harvest. So what to do? Cider, of course! Here is the recipe which was given to me by the first aforementioned lady:
12 qts water
12 qts apples or crabapples, cut in half
Bring to boil for 5 minutes. Add 2/3 cup Cream of Tartar. Cover with lid and let sit 24 hours. Strain and can (process in boiling water canner 10 minutes) or put into airtight food-grade containers (I washed out my juice and milk jugs and used them).
If you're going to freeze it, leave plenty of headspace for the juice to expand. Also, this will produce unsweetened apple juice. If you like a sweeter drink, add 4 cups sugar per 30 cups juice (or I just add a tablespoon per glass).
(for those of you who are curious about the difference between apple juice and apple cider - apple juice is simply put through more levels of straining to remove sediment).
Thursday, 29 August 2013
Tuesday, 13 August 2013
1) Learn how to make maple syrup: failed - lost my maple-tapping supplies that I'd ordered online.. they are somewhere in the house but goodness if I know where...
2) Save at least 80% of my monthly grocery bill through gardening: I think I accomplished that in July. Our grocery bills have dropped down to roughly $30/week and 1/3 of that is just milk. Honestly, if I had a cow and chickens, our grocery bill would be zilch.
3) Learn how to can with rubber rings: Successfully canned 4 jars using rubber rings with glass tops. Only one of them did not stay sealed. That's a pretty good success rate for my first time, but I think I'll stick with "normal" lids from now on.
Monday, 12 August 2013
Firstly, after all my jam/jelly submissions, they were all disqualified due to mis-categorization. In other words, nobody had explained how to tag my submissions properly and so none of them were accepted into any category due to confusion.
However my sewing/knitting/crochet did great. I won:
1st prize on a sewn kids vest;
1st prize on a sewn kids sunsuit;
2nd prize on a sewn ladies blouse;
2nd prize on a crochet kids pullover;
3rd prize on knit adult socks
My sewn kids pyjamas didn't place, nor did my knitted dishcloth or sewn clutch.
In total it cost me about $9 total to enter all my entries and I won $14.50 in cash prizes, minus the $5 automatic membership given to vendors, which means I got a cheque for $9.50. Just enough to cover my entry fees.
Next year, my advice to myself:
1) One item per category.
2) Go for the big-payout categories. Even if you only win ONE it will pay for all your entries.
3) Concentrate on handiwork rather than food, which spoils - after the judges taste it, you have to eat it ALL or it'll go to waste.
4) For sewn items, try to make most items reversible or reinforce seams - some judges are picky about seams and will completely disqualify a piece for a personal opinion about seaming.
5) Don't bother having a vendor table, just focus on crafting items for judging. Sitting at a table is a waste of time - prize money will earn more than sales.