Posts related to 9. Making Things
This category covers things that we make and tells you how you can make them too.
24 January 2014 - How to make kombucha: The ancient elixir
As we wrote in our post about sourdough bread, we are sour lovers – you can read about making sauerkraut and kefir on this blog, so we thought it was about time for kombucha too. We take this fizzy, acidic and slightly sweet drink to parties and introduce people to it wherever we go… and the thing that constantly surprises me is just how much people love it, often putting down their alcoholic drinks to switch to this probiotic goodness! You can imagine how chuffed that makes me.
The kombucha is made with a SCOBY, which is a Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast that acts on sugar and tea to produce not only acetic and lactic acid but also small amounts of a potent detoxifying substance, glucuronic acid. Normally this organic acid is produced by the liver in sufficient quantities to neutralise toxins in the body – whether naturally … Read the rest
21 January 2014 - The sour life: How to make sourdough bread
We are sour lovers – sauerkraut, kefir, kombucha and sourdough bread. It’s not just that they are great for our bodies, providing us with billions of good bacteria and yeasts, but this sort of food is tasty too. Sourdough bread, in particular, is something special. We have friends begging us to bring them a loaf every time we visit and getting up early on a Saturday morning to bake fills my heart and stomach with so much love. The process of kneading, the aromas during baking and the wonder of eating something that rose thanks to invisible organisms in our environment never fails to satisfy me. Bread is the staple of life but these days bread is dead. Sourdough is alive and better for you!
A few times a week we knead out a loaf, deciding what combination of seeds and nuts we’ll include this time. It brings … Read the rest
16 May 2013 - Tomato free pasta sauce
In case you haven’t seen via facebook, Carly (that’s me) is currently in Perth, Australia, visiting friends, looking after babies and hanging out in their suburban permaculture food forest, Thyme Lords Cottage. My friends are aiming to become as close as possible to self sufficient one day. I am loving spending time with their 2 year old and newborn, as well as seeing what they are growing and cooking!!
The mum in this beautiful little family developed allergies around 15 years ago – to wheat, soy and tomatoes. As you can imagine, this has made cooking a little difficult, buying anything processed is next to impossible and of course, she really misses the flavours, the diversity of food options, and the rich tomato-based sauces, especially spaghetti bolognese! The great thing is that she’s creative and has developed a tasty alternative that we made up this week and I want to … Read the rest
22 April 2013 - Getting high: Lounge room gardening at altitude
Recently we posted this photograph of our lounge room garden on facebook where you can see some of the plants we are growing indoors. In addition to these, we are also growing more tatsoi, mizuna, spinach, rosemary, laurel tree, oregano, thyme, parsley, mint and some cucumber seedlings have started to take off!As I’ve mentioned before, we don’t produce enough to make any huge contribution to our food supply but we enjoy doing what we can experimenting growing and seed saving indoors, at an altitude of 3,200 m (La Paz, Bolivia)! Our lounge room is perfectly situated to make the most of the sun’s movements throughout the day, meaning we have a wonderful little microclimate where we can grow food that has no chance outdoors. Actually, I miss growing outdoors – growing in containers is quite a challenge – trying to create biodiversity and encourage beneficial insects is nearly impossible (especially
03 March 2012 - How to make kefir labneh balls at home
This is just a short post to share a simple idea and another way to eat your kefir… kefir labneh balls.
First, make your kefir cheese like we described in this post.
Then, take teaspoons full of the cheese, roll them in your hand and put them in a jar with olive oil and whatever else you want.
We added rosemary and juniper berries in this lot (*see update below). Et voila! How easy and beautiful do they look? I think it’s also a great gift idea.
*Update: I did put rosemary and juniper berries in this lot but since doing this one I haven’t done it again… putting herbs in oil can create a perfect environment for botulism.… Read the rest
17 February 2012 - How to make mozzarella at home
You might remember this post from the New England Cheese Making Supply Company… they liked our ‘How to make brie cheese at home’ post so much they posted it on their site and sent us a Mozzarella & Ricotta kit. We were so excited to try another type of cheese at home so this post is how we made it. The great thing about making mozzarella is that it’s quite simple, fairly quick and you can eat it straight away!
The following instructions are essentially from the New England Cheese Making Supply Company, with our own notes and experiences added. They have an excellent website for trouble shooting, www.cheesemaking.com, and even have a cheese tech, who can be contacted through their ‘contact us’ page to answer your questions. Check out this page for extra information though. Their kit definitely makes things easy too as it comes with … Read the rest
12 February 2012 - How to make sauerkraut and cultured vegetables at home
Recently we’ve tried making our own sauerkraut. It’s so incredibly easy and healthy that it seemed silly not to try and of course, share it with you! This post shares two methods – with salt and with whey. The kefir whey version is quicker to ferment and ready for eating.
What is Sauerkraut?
Sauerkraut literally means ‘sour cabbage’ in German – it is naturally fermented thinly sliced cabbage. It has a distinctive tangy flavour and is often used on hot dogs, as a condiment to meals but also much more… as an ingredient in soups, salads and sandwiches too, for example.
Its flavour and preservation is a result of lactic acid that forms when the bacteria, the cabbage’s natural flora, ferment the sugars in the juice that is extracted from the cabbage by adding salt. You may remember the lactic acid explanation when we fermented butter too!
There are many … Read the rest
03 February 2012 - How to make kefir cheese
Since we’ve been loving our kefir nearly daily at the moment, I thought we should take a small step further to make something other than smoothies from it. When I started looking online I was amazed by the variety of recipes using kefir as an ingredient – cheese, ice-cream, sourdough bread, cookies, pancakes, pizza bases, soups and more. So, one step at a time! I decided to take a very small step indeed to make a very simple type of kefir cheese.
Now, this cheese isn’t a hard cheese… but its not quite like cottage cheese either. I really like Dom’s description that the flavour and texture is similar to quark, or the condensed yoghurt-type curd, labneh. It’s very smooth and creamy. We ate loads of this delicious cheese when we were in Jordan and Palestine recently so it seemed perfect to make a kefir version.
How do you make … Read the rest
29 January 2012 - How to make muesli, granola, cereal… or whatever you want to call it!
When Jean eats a bowl of cereal from a standard pack of muesli, nearly half the pack is gone! He’s a hungry man! It’s expensive, contains hardly any of those cashews advertised so prominently on the label and often has a heap of sugar added too! So, a few years ago I decided to make our cereal weekly at home. Now, we really miss it when we are travelling and feel we don’t get a proper start to the day without it. More importantly, what Jean realised is that no matter how high-fiber/high-protein the store bought cereal was, it wouldn’t really keep him full for very long and he’d need a snack mid morning. With our own cereal he isn’t hungry until lunch time.
This way we can get all the proportions of nuts, seeds and fruit we want (no skimping!!) without any added sugar. It’s just so easy, so delicious … Read the rest
23 January 2012 - How to make kefir at home
When we were doing our cheese making course back in 2010, Elisabeth Fekonia gave us some kefir grains to take home. So we’ve been using these friendly microorganisms and yeasts to help balance our inner ecosystem and supply complete protein, essential minerals and vitamins B12, B1 and C. It is also an excellent source of biotin, which helps the assimilation and absorption of other B vitamins from the body.
Kefir has all the great health benefits of yoghurt and more, because whilst yoghurt works through a bacterial conversion of the milk sugars, kefir uses both bacterial and yeast actions! Kefir is full of probiotics while the calcium, magnesium and phosphorous from the milk is maintained for proper growth of cells and for maintenance of the body and abundant energy. As mentioned above, it is easy to digest because the yeast in the grains feed on the lactose in the milk! … Read the rest