Friday, October 29, 2010

Dried Pears

Here are the last of the pears. In a hurry, what can I do? I decided to dehydrate them.

I have this cool little "apple peeler/corer" thing. But if you want, you can set it so it does NOT peel. That's what I did.

Whenever I do canning, or something like this, I try to set up a good "system" first. That makes it much easier. Here is a bowl for the cores and stems:

Here is what the pears look like coming out of the device:

And then I plopped them into a bowl of apple juice so they won't turn brown:

Here is a core after this pear was cored and sliced. Easy to slip off and discard:

Here are some draining in a colander:

I took each sliced pear and cut it in half:

Then I spread them out on the dehydrator trays:

Here is the dehydrator with most of the trays full:

And here is what was left over!

A few hours later, I have two quart sized bags of nice, chewy and sweet dehydrated pears!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Welcome to our home

Deb, who blogs over at Doing my Best for Him is hosting a home tour today (for those brave enough to do it!)

Welcome to our home!

We call this the "work room." It is a converted garage. We heat our house with wood and hang a little fan in the door between this room and the dining room to move the heat along. In the foreground on the left, is a little fridge that I use for goat milk storage. The wooden rack on the right is for firewood.

Same room, view toward the outside door:

The exciting hallway at the end of which is my vacuum cleaner and the kitty's litter box:

Welcome to my sewing room. I take in sewing to help the budget a bit:

Another sewing room view. You can see my spinning wheel up there:

Out the door from the sewing room:

The sewing corner:

Our bedroom (and whole house!) will never be ready for House Beautiful Magazine. We live in it.

The bed. And an old family photo of all of us. We bought this antique sleigh bed for $30 back in 1972.

My dresser and nightstand:

My nest - the livingroom:

The side of the living room. Our books and jumble of baskets. I really do use them, but this is where they stay in the mean time:

Television and grandmother clock and a few other items in the living room:

More of the same:

Utility room:

Washer and dryer (Have you fallen asleep yet?)

Home canned things in food storage room. I have foil covering the windows to keep most of the light out:

"Store bought" things in food room:

My elliptical exercise machine is in there too. Yes, I really use it.

Dining room and as you can see, sort of an extension of my kitchen:

Another view:

And my piano:

And china cabinet:

Curio cabinet:

View into kitchen:

In the corner of the kitchen:

Hoosier cupboard and shelves. A friend made those shelves for me. What a blessing! If I didn't cook much, I wouldn't need them. But I do. A lot. See the cheese press? It has some cheddar in it:

My kitchen range:

My messy fridge with milking buckets and radio on top:

Oh, yes, and the bathroom:

From the other end:

Front of the house:

Who do you see out there?

Abby, Gracie and Susie:

I made these compost bins from free wood pallets and wired them together with wire coat hangers about 12 years ago. They look very... uh... well, they still work!

Here is the door we go in:

That's it! Our jumbled, comfy home. Now you know. :)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

A New Hearty Sourdough Rye Bread

Here is the dough, resting on the wooden "peel" sprinkled with corn meal.

Here is the "La Cloche" pre-heating in the oven.

Here is the loaf right before I put it into the La Cloche.

Here is the finished loaf!

AND, here is the recipe:

Hearty Sourdough Rye Bread

1 cup bubbly sourdough starter
1/2 cup milk kefir
1 teaspoon Real Salt
1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tablespoons Sucanat
1 cup freshly ground whole grain rye flour
1 Tablespoon Caraway Seed
freshly ground whole wheat flour


Mix together all of the ingredients except the whole wheat flour in a large bowl. Then, begin adding the whole wheat flour, a little at a time, until it makes a fairly stiff dough, like you could knead it. Then, using sprinkles of whole wheat flour, knead the dough for 10 minutes.

Oil the bowl, put the dough in and turn it over so the top is oiled. Cover tightly with plastic wrap. I put this together early yesterday afternoon, and before I went to bed I punched it down. This morning I completed it.

Form the loaf into a nice smooth round and place on a peel sprinkled with plenty of corn meal.

Place La Cloche or a baking stone in your oven and pre-heat the oven to 450 degrees F, for 30 minutes.

When the loaf is nice and springy, brush the top with an egg that has been mixed with 1/2 shell of water. Sprinkle more carraway seeds on top. Slash the top in 3 places. Slide it into the La Cloche or onto your baking stone. (If you have neither, then just use a baking sheet that you do have. It should not be pre-heated.)

Bake for 25 minutes and then remove the top of the La Cloche and bake for 5 more minutes. Cool on a wire rack. If using a baking stone or sheet, if the bread is getting too brown, put a tent of aluminum foil or a piece of brown paper bag on top to protect it. It took 30 minutes total to bake mine sufficiently. You will have to gauge it to your oven.
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