Friday, October 22, 2010

Super Yummy French Bread

Last time I was at the Prepared Pantry I saw this base for French Bread. Curious I decided to give it a try. It was sooo good. It had that distinct french bread taste. I've tried to make homemade French bread before. It was good, but tasted like regular homemade bread.

The instructions included were fairly easy to follow, but not quite simplified enough for me.
If you get a chance to get some of this awesome stuff and want an easier method, here is what I did:
One cup Base for French Bread
2 cups warm water (about 110 degrees)
3 1/2 cups bread flour
1 seven-gram packet of yeast
Put all ingredients in your bread maker and use the dough setting. When that is done, shape into two long loaves on a cookie sheet, cover with plastic wrap sprayed with cooking spray and let rise until really puffy in a warm place (about an hour). Preheat your oven to 375. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until golden brown.
Store leftovers in a paper bag. (Not plastic).
Best eaten within a couple of days.
Perfect with some soup or chili.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Simplified Mango Sticky Rice

Mango Sticky Rice: One of our good friends (and one of the best cooks I know) writes the food blog Salt and Flattery. He did a post on Mango Sticky Rice that looked soo good. But it was a little too extensive for me (and I couldn't find Thai sticky rice or have a bamboo steamer) So I did what we did best around here and simplified. It turned out pretty darn yummy. I would be curious to see how my simplified version compared to his. Here is my version:

Mango Sticky Rice


1 Cup Thai Jasmine Rice (Found in the Asian Section)
1 Can (14 oz) Lite coconut milk
A little less than 1/2 cup of sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 mangos, peeled and chopped (I used frozen that I thawed)

Mix the coconut milk, sugar, and salt and add enough water that it makes 1 3/4 cup liquid. Bring to a boil in a saucepan and add rice. Cover and simmer over low heat for 15-20 minutes without removing the lid. Stir in mangos and serve.

I thought it was delicious. My husband thought it was like dessert rice. Half of the kids liked it.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Homemade Laundry Soap


Yes, you heard me-homemade!! Who knew?? We learned this recipe at a church meeting a few months ago. I recently ran out of the store bought stuff and decided to give it a try. Then yesterdays dirty clothes got to be the lucky ones to give it a go. And yes it worked. Everything was clean.
And the best part is that it is stinking cheap. I haven't calcuated exactly but it has to be way less than a penny per load. I don't know how widespread this recipe is online, but I still had to share it with you. I heard that the 18-kids and Counting lady uses this stuff to do her laundry. It really only took about 10-15 minutes to make after you have everything gathered.

I found the Fels-naptha and washing soda at Winco (our grocery store)

Liquid Laundry Soap

4 cups Hot tap water
1 Fels-naptha Bar
1 cup washing soda
1/2 cup Borax

Directions: Grate Fels-soap and add to hot water. Stir over medium-low heat until the soap is dissolved. Fill one gallon bucket 1/2 full of hot tap water. Add soap mixture, soda, and borax until dissolved. Add more hot water to fill up 5 gallon bucket. Let sit over night. Then when cool you can add 10-15 drops essential oils per 2 gallons of soap.

I'm going to use a leftover plastic gallon ice cream bucket to fill up for easier use, then go back to the five gallon bucket to refill that. You might have to restir once in awhile.

Top loaders uses 1/4 cup per load.
Front loaders uses 1/8 cup per load.