Author: Maisy (page 1 of 36)

Cold is in again

Today I have been fighting with this non-seasoned wood to get something burning for tonight. It’s getting chillier in the house, and it’s nice to be warmer in the evening, the fireplace’s job.

Top down works well, but not when the wood is so, well, I have to use a lot of junk to get it going and fight, fight, fight chants to the embery pieces. But usually they just sizzle and eventually die, no wood will take their cheeky heat and start really burning. I have a few precious sort of seasoned things I can put on a sort of actually burning fire to get more embers to make the unseasoned partially burning guys to actually, burn up sooner than later.

Poking and prodding and washing my hands and recycled around and around is how it feels.

Cold

It’s been quite cold (for where we live) and that means the fireplace is happy! But it’s not, because we don’t have well seasoned wood. Ha ha ha, joke’s on me. It makes me not happy because it’s more than a chore to get a fire hot for the morning, or all day, as needed.

Season’s first fire, wood we had left over, so it was pleasant to use.
November 14, 2018

Warmer weather is on the way, so I can do nothing about seasoning the wood, it needs way longer time and it’s going to be raining so … 

Thanksgiving Week

It’s that time of year, the week of Thanksgiving Dinner.

Preparations are under way via plans and gathering.

Tomorrow we’ll pick up the turkeys from Whole Foods Market, and the little things I have left to get at Costco and Publix.

Monday night will be the last dinner we actually “make” before Thanksgiving Dinner.

So today and tomorrow will be time for making bread for stuffing and going out for things and making one last dinner. Then Tuesday the big cooking, the turkey and stuffing, gravy. Out of the way, sliced, packaged, packaged, packaged. Done.

Wednesday prepping for Thursday, pies, and other things.

So Tuesday and Wednesday the oven will be in use, leftovers and frozen stuff will be meals, fit in when can, eventually.

Thursday getting ready for dinner will mostly be putting together sides, lots of oven use, and then getting the gravy nice and hot, turkey warmed up, stuffing too.

It’ll be a busy week, tiresome, and fun. Thanksgiving is the beginning of the feeling of SEASON’S GREETINGS!

EW30EF65GSA Oven Door Glass Replaced

I had ordered 1 inner glass, thankfully I only needed 1. There aren’t only 2, there are 3 bleeping pieces of glass in that oven door. Not counting the front glass even.

The new piece of glass is where the old one broke. The one that faces the oven directly. It looked cracked, but taking the door apart the middle piece of glass between the cracks was floating free.

It was torture, but mostly because we couldn’t get the door off, then worked on it while on, but then couldn’t close it and couldn’t remember how the hinges worked, took it out to figure out but didn’t until I found and finally watched some video about putting a pipe on the hinge to move it, oh goodness priceless. I felt so powerful at that point, floop, floop, each side down and push lock up, slide door in, push down lock thingie on both sides. Door closes right. Wow. So much trouble could have been avoided but “now we know” exactly how the dumb hinge works on the oven door.

Also, no more self-clean cycles. No thanks.

EW30EF65GSA Troubled Again

I did a small cleaning cycle in my Electrolux (EW30EF65GSA) main oven last week, and the inner glass cracked. Ouch. I could have used it still, but I have enough problems with racks in it, I wasn’t going to deal with it until I could replace the glass.

My glass replacement is out for delivery, I’ll be fixing the door today, fingers crossed that it goes well.

Both my glide racks are messed up. They don’t slide/glide at all, I can barely get them into the oven or out of it sometimes. I worked on one the other day, and made it work to put into and take out of the oven smoothly. I have to keep looking at the side piece with the spring on the right side the oven has felt too hot, and that is the side of my one rack that is overly browned and stuck, the other side is still silver and smoothly working. The glide doesn’t work because of, yes, that same right side.

The cost to replace these glide racks is too high. Just getting them insert/removable is all I can do with my old ones, so that’s that.

This stove has been driving me crazy. It’s too modern, glide/electric everything, motherboards, and all I have ever really wanted is a good enough gas standalone stove/oven.

Preparing Bread for Thanksgiving Turkey Stuffing

I’m prepping for roasting my turkey tomorrow, ahead of Thursday. This allows me to make the gravy and slice the turkey, get all the turkey packaged and into the refrigerator, only having to re-heat turkey in gravy for Thursday’s dinner. That means having all the other time on Thursday to make the rest of the meal.

Wednesday is Pie day. Tradition.

Today I am making onion bread, egg bread, and whole grain spelt bread. Currently onion bread is in the oven, egg bread is on it’s last bowl rise, and spelt whole grain is soaking in buttermilk.


Onion Bread in the oven

Onion Bread in the oven


Egg Bread Rising in Bowl

Egg Bread Rising in Bowl


Whole Grain Spelt & Whole Grain Spelt Flour in Buttermilk

Whole Grain Spelt & Whole Grain Spelt Flour in Buttermilk


What is all this bread for? Stuffing the turkey, of course! I love stuffing. In The Bird Stuffing is heaven.

I usually put raisins in it, sometimes walnuts too. Start with onion and celery in butter, then add rubbed sage, oh the scents are incredible! Chicken stock, some sea salt, a couple of eggs (wisked in), any other things I want added, then the bread sliced into cubes and added, mixed around, stuffed into the bird, rest into a casserole.

It’s been cooler of late, and since yesterday rather a smokey smell to the air.

I looked at alerts yesterday, but I only saw one for NC but assumed it had to be associated … there is an alert today for us today, FWIW.

Wildfires.

Pans; Cookware

My older cookware is what I mostly use now. It had been in storage, but has a few pieces that work well for our current stove, thick disc flat bottoms.

I’d gotten that cookware, Sitram, in the 2000’s, but got NEW cookware when we got this Electrolux glass top stove. The new stuff was OK, good, at first, but the most used pieces end up getting rounded on the bottom when hot and some have held that shape, some are more round, and a few just uneven and ugh it’s a pain. [Plus I don’t think it’s good to cook with that variety of cookware condition.]

What that means is my pot rack is fuller than full and I still don’t have as many pans as I want to work with. That newer bad stuff is in the back and I avoid it mostly, others in my family use it sometimes to cook something, though I do most of the actual “cooking” as well as controlling the pans one uses to cook something for the family.

My biggest fry/sauce pan is actually a Costco pan, and it’s just about the same as my Sitram pans, just a tad beefier, lovely thick flat bottom disc and metal lid.

My newer pans have glass lids with metal rims: all of this stuff, my newer and older lids, work pretty good with all the different pans. That’s the one saving grace.

French Bread Baguettes using Dough Function of Bread Machine

1 cup water

4 cups flour

1 tsp. sea salt

1 tsp. active dry yeast.

Add to bread machine and choose Dough Only function. When cycle completes remove from machine and put in a lightly oiled bowl and cover. Allow to rise an 1 1/2 hrs. Punch down.

Rest dough for 10 minutes. Divide dough into portions for baguettes. Determine how long you want them and then the width to calculate how many baguettes you can make.

Width will double while rising after shaping, so take that into consideration for final sizing.

Place shaped baguettes on parchment paper lined cookie sheets, allow to double in size, then bake as directed below.

Place an oven-safe dish with at least 2 cups of hot water into the bottom of the oven. Turn the heat to 350 degrees F. When oven is ready, quickly (to avoid losing more moisture than you want to) move the cookie sheets into the oven’s middle racks and allow to bake for about 20 minutes, more or less as needed, until baguettes are golden and have a hollow sound when bottom is tapped.

White Spelt Large Loaf in Bread Machine

1 1/4 Cups Water (additional liquid, as needed at around 5 beeps)
1 1/2 Teaspoons Salt
3 Tablespoons Butter, cut into small pieces
1 Tablespoon Sugar or Honey
4 Cups Spelt Flour (addition flour, as needed at around 5 beeps)
1 1/2 Teaspoons Active Yeast

Put ingredients into bread machine pan in order of recipe. Choose White Bread as the cycle, Large for loaf size, Light for crust color.

White Spelt flour (as well as whole spelt flour) requires less liquid in bread recipes, compared to other wheat flours.

I prefer to use less liquid rather than less flour in recipes.

French Bread

1 tsp. Sea Salt

1 tsp. active dry yeast

3 cups White Spelt Flour

3/4 cup water (+more, as needed)

Add sea salt and active dry yeast to the flour. Mix well. Add water slowly and when dough forms into a ball easily, cleaning sides of bowl, knead for awhile longer until it’s very pliable and conditioned, not tacky or too dry. Add water or flour by Tablespoon as needed.

Slowly add water while mixing with spoon or in bread machine or stand mixer, once all water is added, depending on dough consistency, add more water or flour a Tablespoon at a time until dough is pulling away from bowl edge and not sticky, but pliable and can form a ball.

Let rise an hour, then punch down. Allow to rise again until doubled.

Punch down, allow to rest for 10 minutes, then form into two pieces, roll into long ropes and put onto parchment paper lined cookie sheet, allow to double in size, then slash across several times down each baguette with a sharp knife.

Bake in 350F oven for 25 minutes, or until lightly browned and sounds hollow when tapped on bottom.

For crispy crust, while pre-heating oven put an oven-able container of hot water on the bottom of the oven. In a fast motion get the cookie sheet into the oven when it’s to 350F and quickly close the door.

Range is fixed. Need new cookware.

We had someone come in to fix our EW30EF65GSA Range.

Our Electrolux Stove is out of commission

We needed a new Relay Board, and I was sick of trying to fix it. Another thing is they said the power wasn’t hooked up correctly. Quizzical since it was installed by installers and the power cord was separate then, but brand new, they hooked it up. It worked all this time, nothing changed but all of the sudden the front right burner just changed. So the first visit, they fixed the electrical connection, and voila, the front right burner wasn’t “ON” all the time anymore, but the Relay Board wasn’t right, and the burner’s inner ring wasn’t working. (Before that, the whole thing was ON red hot, so this is odd, to me.)

They came back on Saturday, and now it all works again. Maybe better than before. Haven’t determined whether or not that is so.

I have a few kinks to get out though, still missing one halogen light in the oven, so expensive! The upper one stopped working in the first couple of years.

The oven racks are, or were, lovely — but have become cratchety old ladies. They need limbered up, and re-aligned in some way. No way I’m ordering new ones when they are over $180 each. Ouch!

I’d love to get a new glass top, but that’s something I can’t yet find, nor can convince my husband of the necessity, though that time is coming sometime. It’s all scratched up and there is a deep pocket of missing glass on the front right burner, yes a chunk gone and no one knows how or why or when it happened, just in the last few months. No one claims to have done it, or witnessed it or anything so… I know it was a mystery to me when I discovered it already there.

I do want a new set of cookware. The stuff we have is old now, we got it when the range was new. It’s flat bottom stuff, but junk for a glass top stove. It warps as it gets hot, so misshapen and the mess of the stove top state…

Flat Disc sort of cookware is what I want/need, at least something that will NOT warp.

I really want to use Cast Iron, but won’t unless I have a flame to cook over. I don’t have a gas stove, but truly it’s the ultimate cooking device and I don’t have one. No gas line to the community we are in, and the other method to obtain gas, husband isn’t convinced of, so electric is the only way and if I had to get another stove I think I’d quit cooking, end of story.

I hate flat top cooking surfaces, I hate coils. I hate them so much, have ALWAYS loved flame and so I am destined to always have what I don’t want, I guess.

Our Electrolux Stove is out of commission

Our EW30EF65GSA suddenly had a major problem over a week ago now. The front right burner, radiant element under a glass top, dual-burner, turned ON but was too hot, like on super HIGH. Turned it off, it was flashing HE as usual and looking settings-wize was OFF, but still burning hot on HIGH and looking full ON.

Since that Thursday mealtime flub-up, we haven’t been able to use the stove at all. I’ve ordered and installed a new burner, that wasn’t it. The burner has Continuity still, but there is no way to test the center piece that is called a “limiter” so changing out the burner was step one of correcting the problem.

I’ve read so many sites, looked up parts, memorized my stove model number without even trying to.

I replaced a board in the back but it wasn’t the one to affect change, but I was happy to have that replaced anyhow, not that it was needed now,  but it would be in the case of it shorting out, etc. New functioning part good, for the most.

So the problem ends up probably being the relay board or the wires … which one I don’t know and will not tackle further. Wire Harness is what needs replaced if it’s a wire and wow, not a fun or easy thing. Not impossible, but I am just sick of this machine.

We will be contacting a technician to come out and … who knows what. I wanted to fix it up more than that, also somehow find a new glass top for it, and some time replace the bottom of the  main oven (I can still do that sometime easily.)

I have another project I’m working on, our Fridgidaire Freezer, model FKFH21F7HW* — I started working on it before the stove starting erroring. When it rains, it pours.

Fridgidaire Upright Freezer E8 and more

Our freezer has had problems for a long while now. I finally had enough of it, decided to look deeper into it. Hurray! It’s definite that two things I’ve gotten for it were better for it. Front control panel and the Temperature Defrost gizmo are what I’ve replaced  (I tested the Temp Defrost when it arrived, and it checked out properly.) Next is the door gasket, I have it, hope to get it installed today.

Tomorrow the new Thermistor will arrive in the mail. It’s the key, I do hope, to why the freezer wasn’t working as well in the beginning and ended up where it was when I picked up this project … totally frosted over and iced up bottom of the freezer … the drain plug was one big ice puck. Nothing would defrost. It was cold, but saying the door was open and alarming all the time.

I put the new front control in, and vwomp, it stays closed better, but still needs a new gasket. Since putting in the control panel it’ll run cold, but eventually E8 error.

I took the Temperature Defrost off, testing it and it was dead. Got a new one, meanwhile defrosted the freezer manually, took everything out put it into a big 7-day cooler, it took a day and night and partial day, but eventually the ice melted and all the water drained, what a mess.

That E8 error and HIGH TEMP are what are the two normal views on the display now. The Thermistor, if it’s not the key, it’s the key stone. Last probable need to change will be that heater piece. I don’t know if it is needed. Once the Thermistor and Gasket are both installed I’ll plug it back in and see what happens. Holding out hope. 🙂

It’s the week of Christmas 2015!

Less than a week until Christmas means more baking, more cleaning, more, more, more …

I made a batch of Snickerdoodles yesterday. I also made up a double batch of Tollhouse Cookies, but didn’t bake them, my daughter did.

I want to make a chewy molasses cookie, snowballs (russian tea cakes), and so many more cookies.

An old favorite of mine, not a cookie, a savory snack, Olive Cheese Balls. A simple cheddar, flour, melted butter dough wrapped around a pimento stuffed olive, the small variety.  I really love this during the Christmas holiday, but no one else is a fan. Quite disappointing.

So this time I will make them, but ahead, freeze, and only bake enough at a time. Then I can enjoy them longer, or maybe someone else will end up liking Olive Cheese Balls.

That brings me to oh, I should make a Cheddar Cheese Ball too. Previously talking about the Olive variety, that is a flour, butter, and cheese dough, and baked, while a Cheddar ball is cheeses, and more, not baked. 🙂 Pimento Cheese is another idea to employ. I would highly prefer to make it, never buy it again. Super Grin at that.

Things that need to get done make it harder this year. We had an old piano sitting in the house, moved it out recently, and now the bare floor needs worked on. We have about 3 rows of hardwood to put in. We did one yesterday. Hopefully we can swing the rest of it today. That is where the Christmas tree, awaiting our beckon, is going to be. It’s in the garage for now.

Only so many days left, not that many, but I hope to get the feeling akin to “it’s working”, sense the magic.

Culture, still haven’t gotten any

The last regular post I wrote on this site was about Culture, in February. It’s now nearing the end of August and I haven’t put a bit more of time into obtaining any sour dough or any other cultures.

I’m very unhappy with myself about my non-action, and will try to redeem the situation very soon. I don’t mean try, I mean, do it.

Fresh Tomato and Onion Salsa

2 cups freshly diced tomatoes, seeded

1 medium sweet onion, finely diced

8-10 cloves garlic, peeled and finely diced

1 Teaspoon dried oregano

2 Lemons, juiced

2 Tablespoons Sea Salt

1/4 cup spring water

—————————————

Combine everything but the water in a bowl, mix together well. Pack the tomato-onion mix into a Quart jar, then add the water, adding more to cover the tomato-onion if necessary.

Tomato-Onion Salsa

Tomato-Onion Salsa

 

Cover tightly and leave at room temperature for 48 hours. Store in refrigerator after that.

Good with corn chips, on taco’s, or anything else you can imagine.

————————————————————————————

This recipe was adapted by me from Page 103  “Salsa” of Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon

 

 

Culture Talk

I’ve been thinking about doing more with bread again. I stopped making my own spelt sponges quite awhile ago. I need to get a proper sourdough starter. I’m making that my objective to complete in the next couple of weeks.

[I do not want to “attempt” to make my own BTDT it’s not for me.]

Another thing is something I used to do with cream and milk. Piima culture  is really nice with raw milk. It’s pretty easy to use, but I was struggling in my house to find the right place for my starter to work since we changed things so much the past several years. I want to get back on track with that.

Another thing is croissants. I don’t like anything but a really well made one. Homemade … I attempted it long ago, in the 2000’s when internet recipes and comparison tools were NOT as they are now. It was wild and crazy, but I made them, tasty, wonderful but I’d never go through that again. Of course there are much better instructions online nowdays. It’s a peculiar bread, it must be folded with butter to laminate the layers to create the perfectly edible croissant at home. Starting with the right ingredients for the dough is key. I’ll get this going sometime soon as well.

Blueberry Corn Muffins

1 1/4 cups corn meal (a Masa variety)
3/4 cup Sprouted flour
1/2 cup sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt

1 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen

1 egg
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 1/4 cups milk

In a large bowl combine the dry ingredients. Add the blueberries, stirring to distribute them fairly evenly.

In another bowl stir the egg well, then drizzle in the melted butter while stirring well, then add in a little of the milk, stirring well, then stir the rest of the milk in very quickly.

Add the milk/egg/butter mixture to the large bowl of dry ingredients. Using a spatula carefully combine only until the dry mixture is wet (do not over stir!)

Drop the batter via a spoon or scoop into a 12 muffin pan, buttered, or paper liner cups, filling with a rounded mountain above each muffin.

Bake at 350 to 400 degrees, however fast or slow your oven is (also taking into account convection or conventional ovens) for 15 to 25 minutes, until golden brown and a testing stick inserted in the center of the muffins comes out clean.

I prefer to bake for 15 minutes, asses and turn the pan around as needed.

Corn-Bread Taco Casserole

This recipe is made in a 9×13 glass pan, serves a large family or small group easily. (Really delicious first time, or as leftovers!)

Make a double recipe of cornbread batter, layer cornbread batter and taco meat and cheese, bake in the oven until the cornbread is done, lightly browned on top.

Taco filling:

2 lbs ground beef
2 tablespoons Ancho Chili Powder
1/2 small onion, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, smashed and finely chopped, smashed to paste consistency
1 tablespoons Cumin
1 teaspoon Sea Salt
1 teaspoons Oregano
1 small cans diced tomatoes

Cornbread Batter:

2 cups cornmeal
1 1/2 cups white spelt flour
1/4 cup sugar
5 teaspoons (non aluminum) baking powder
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 cups milk
4 eggs
1/2 cup melted butter

——————

2 Cups of Monterey Jack Cheese shredded fine

Put half corn bread batter on the bottom of the pan. Taco filling goes next, then cheese, then the last half of corn bread batter.

Bake for 20 to 30 minutes at 400 degrees F., or until the cornbread on top is set and lightly browned.

Serve and enjoy piping hot!

Older posts

© 2018 Pastoral Farms

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑