Thursday, September 30, 2010

Honeyville Farms Sale

I got this email today.  Great thing is they ship anywhere for $4.49, no matter how much you order.

Greetings from Honeyville Farms:

SUMMARY:  OUR BIGGEST SALE OF THE YEAR!  15% OFF YOUR ENTIRE ORDER* from Thursday, September 30, 2010 thru Tuesday, October 5, 2010 at 6:00PM PST.  Simply enter the coupon code FALL during checkout. This week we're introducing our New Survival Backpacks featuring Freeze Dried Entrees.  We're also blowing out our Powdered Whole Eggs by the case with our lowest price of the year!  Save on these and all of your favorites for a limited time.



Don't miss out on our biggest sale of the year!  These 15% off sales are few and far between so make sure to stock up and save.  From Thursday, September 30th, 2010 thru Tuesday, October 5th, 2010 you'll get 15% off of every item in your cart*.  Just order as usual and enter the coupon code FALL during checkout.  The coupon code field is on the second page of the checkout process.  Enter the FALL coupon code, click the APPLY button to the right, and the savings will automatically be calculated. 

This week we're introducing 2 new Survival Backpacks featuring Freeze Dried Entrees from Wise Foods.  These kits have everything you need should a disaster occur.  We're also making room for new products by blowing out our Powdered Whole Eggs in the case.  Save an additional 15% on top of our clearance price.  A great buy.


    Visit us at  ACT NOW as this discount will end promptly on Tuesday October 5th at 6:00PM PST.  If you have any questions, concerns, or just want to place an order over the phone call us, toll-free, at (888) 810-3212.  We're happy to help.

Monday, September 27, 2010

7:40 pm and still 100 degrees.

Week 27

I had to make a quick trip to Disney's California Adventure this morning to get tickets for the World of Color show, tonight.  It's a new water and light show at the park, we have waited till the majority of tourists have left.  Although it was getting rather steamy as I hustled my way to Grizzly Rapids to get the Fastpass ticket for the show.

Life is tough here in SoCal, what can I say? 
In spite of the heat, I am finishing up the jalapeño jelly for my DH.  Today's flavor is key lime jalapeño.  I had also purchased a couple of fresh pineapples for $2 bucks each.  I trimmed those down, cut them in spears and used a light sugar solution to can them in pints. Of course, I HAD to sample the pineapple before canning to make sure it was eatable.  I'm happy to say it was sweet and yummy.

Since it is just my DH and me at home now, we scale back on the amount of food we purchase.  One item where that is difficult to do is russet potatoes.  If I want to make baked potatoes, I can get the individual potatoes at the market, but they are usually too big and are almost the same price as buying a sack of potatoes.  Last week I got a 10 lb. bag for $1.67.  Too good of a deal to pass up.  So far I've used 4 potatoes.  What can I do with the rest?  Glad you asked.  This week I am breaking out the pressure canner again and am going to can the potatoes.  I will chunk them and raw pack with a heated salted water brine.  Pints are processed for 35 minutes and quarts for 40 minutes.  That is more than enough time to fully cook the potatoes without parboiling them. With the potatoes canned, you have a great head start on mashed or fried potatoes.  They can also be used for potato casseroles or making a model of the Devil's Tower.  (Like Richard Dreyfuss in Close Encounters of the Third Kind)

Sunday, September 26, 2010

It Isn't Easy Being Green

Like Kermit says, it's not easy being green, unless you're a tomato.   I don't usually wind up with a lot of green tomatoes, but I might make an exception and pick some early. This recipe is from the National Center for Home Food Preservation
Green Tomato Pie
4 qts chopped green tomatoes
3 qts peeled and chopped tart apples
1 lb dark seedless raisins
1 lb white raisins
1/4 cup minced citron, lemon, or orange peel
2 cups water
2-1/2 cups brown sugar
2-1/2 cups white sugar
1/2 cup vinegar (5%)
1 cup bottled lemon juice
2 tbsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp ground cloves
Yield: About 7 quarts

Procedure: Combine all ingredients in a large saucepan. Cook slowly stirring often, until tender and slightly thickened (about 35 to 40 minutes). Fill jars with hot mixture, leaving 1/2-inch headspace. Adjust lids and process. Process in a BWB 15 minutes at sea level and adjust from there.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Strawberry Jalapeño Jam

DH has been taking my jalapeño jelly into to work.  Some of the people wanted more heat, so I made a batch of this. 

Strawberry Jalapeño Jam


  • 4 cups crushed strawberries
  • 1 cup minced jalapeno peppers
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 (2 ounce) package powdered fruit pectin
  • 7 cups white sugar
  • 8 half pint canning jars with lids and rings


  1. Place the crushed strawberries, minced jalapeno pepper, lemon juice, and pectin into a large saucepan, and bring to a boil over high heat. Once simmering, stir in the sugar until dissolved, return to a boil, and cook for 1 minute.
  2. Sterilize the jars and lids in boiling water for at least 5 minutes. Pack the jam into the hot, sterilized jars, filling the jars to within 1/4 inch of the top. Run a knife or a thin spatula around the insides of the jars after they have been filled to remove any air bubbles. Wipe the rims of the jars with a moist paper towel to remove any food residue. Top with lids, and screw on rings.
  3. Place a rack in the bottom of a large stockpot and fill halfway with water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then carefully lower the jars into the pot using a holder. Leave a 2 inch space between the jars. Pour in more boiling water if necessary until the water level is at least 1 inch above the tops of the jars. Bring the water to a full boil, cover the pot, and process for 10 minutes.
  4. Remove the jars from the stockpot and place onto a cloth-covered or wood surface, several inches apart. Allow to cool overnight Once cool, press the top of each lid with a finger, ensuring that the seal is tight (lid does not move up or down at all). Store in a cool, dark area.
My notes: I used 10 large peppers that I did NOT seed. I cut the tops off and tossed the rest in a blender with the strawberries. With this jam, you get a real strawberry flavor then the heat hits about 5 seconds after. Let's see if this is hot enough for them.

I also made some Lemon Jalapeño (hot) and Pineapple Jalapeño (mild).  DH has a charity fundraiser auction at work and wanted several flavors to put in a basket. I sampled the three flavors. The strawberry is very berry flavored-then the burn, the lemon has a burning lemon tang and the pineapple is fairly mild flavored.  I played with pepper, fruit and sugar amounts to get something I liked.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Machu Picchu

Did I mention that I'm going to Peru in November?  I'm going with my friends, the D's. Yes, we are allowing our DH's to accompany us.  I'm excited and hope to be able to see the Nasca Lines also.  I have to start listening to radio and TV in Spanish to get back in tune to listening and speaking Español.
(I found out how to insert the tilde over the n, hold down the alt key and on the numeric keypad type 0241, for upper case it's 0209.)

Survival Bar Recipe

I ran across this survival bar recipe that is straight forward and uses ingredients you already have in your food storage.  I like the idea of adding them to a car kit or grab-n-go kit. At a 1000 calories a bar, I might make four smaller bars instead of the two mentioned. I can see myself polishing off 5-10,000 calories if these were the only items available in my kits.  Check out my earlier post of what I have in my car kit. 72-hr. car kit post
I would make sure to dry them well.  A dehydrator might be a better option.  I would also use a food saver vacuum bag system, if available.

Emergency Survival Bar

3 c. cereal (oatmeal, cornmeal, or wheat flakes)
2 1/2 c. powdered milk
1 c. sugar
3 Tbs. honey
3 Tbs. water
1/2 c. Jell-O (optional)
1/4 tsp. salt

Place all dry ingredients except Jell-O in a bowl. Bring water, honey, and Jell-O to a boil. Add to dry ingredients. Mix well.  Add water a little at a time until mixture is just moist enough to mold. Place in a small square dish and dry in the oven under very low heat. Wrap and store. This will make 2 bars, each containing approx. 1000 calories or enough food for one day. These will store for a long time and are excellent for emergency packs, etc.
Eat dry or cooked in about 3/4 c. water.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Week 26

I'm halfway through my goal of doing something food storage related, for 52 weeks.  Yippee for me!! Some weeks have been more productive than others, but it has been a great learning experience for me.  I hope a post or two has inspired you to experiment with food storage cooking or production. It's always nice to know somebody else is benefiting from my angst and trials. 

The web is a great resource for all things preparedness.  Here is a link for an evacuation list in case you and the family need to get out of the house quickly.
It may seem overwhelming to gather all this together, but a bit of prep time now, may save you a lot of headaches later.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Anybody Heard of Missouri Mix?

We did a bike ride at the beach this afternoon.  They had a display of 'green' companies and products at the pier.  Interesting to see how many of this things we already have incorporated into our daily lives.

I ran across this website for making Missouri Mix.  It is a healthier and cheaper version of Bisquick.  Missouri Mix Recipes and Uses
It can be made with whole wheat, also. Recipes include:
Basic Biscuits
Basic Cake & Variations
Muffin Variations and
Pancakes & Waffles
The mix can be stored in an airtight container for several months.  Freezing or refrigeration will extend the shelf life of the mix.  If whole wheat flour is used it must be refrigerated. When I run out of Bisquick, I'll have to give this a try.  Although, DH is partial to Bisquick.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

6 Mood Boosters That Don't Cost a Dime (Plus 10 More For Good Measure!)

I get an email coupon flyer from RedPlum.  They also have articles on a bit of everything.  I liked this one.

You’re in the doldrums, for no good reason. What can you do without blowing your budget - or your diet? Lots! Whether it's the post-4 pm slump or something that's going on a little longer, try these ideas.
  1. Go outside.
  2. Meditate in nature. A secluded stream is great, but flowers and a fountain works, too.
  3. Exercise. Find something you don’t hate and that doesn’t hurt. Add other mood busters, like music or friends, to make it fun.
  4. Accomplish something. It feels so good to finish a task!
  5. Smile. Studies show that simply smiling lifts your mood. It works especially well when people smile back!
  6. Read something positive – a verse, a devotional, or a daily affirmation.
  7. Create something beautiful. Draw a picture, rearrange the mantle, or paint your toenails.
  8. Call a friend. (What are you saving those cell phone minutes for?)
  9. Smell flowers, spices, or a candle. Or a baby’s head if there’s one nearby.
  10. Visualize ocean waves. Personal finance expert Erica Sandberg pictures troubles coming and going like waves.
  11. Listen to happy music. Make a playlist of music that you can’t be grumpy to.
  12. Turn off the computer and enter the real world.
  13. Give something– fresh-baked cookies, picked flowers, a blood donation, your time. Even advice if you can get away with it.
  14. Look at old photos. Post the funniest ones on Facebook.
  15. Go to the library and read what you want, not necessarily what you should. Try humor books, magazines, or travel books.
  16. Count your blessings. It’s old-fashioned, but tried and true. Sometimes we forget how many things we should be happy about.

 Note: If you have more than a passing sadness, especially if you can’t explain why you feel bad, see your health professional. Many times, blues have a physical reason. With care, you can soon be living life to the fullest again.

What to do with Soft Pears

In cleaning out the fridge, I found some pears that I had bought before going to Utah.  When I bought them they were firm and attractive.  Now they were soft and starting to brown. I decided to can some pear sauce.  No recipe, but just a concoction of pears, water, sugar, a splash of vanilla and a dash of pumpkin pie spice. I peeled the pears and chunked them.  I threw those into a pan with water and cooked for a few minutes.  I used a potato masher to finish the job of smashing the pears.  The texture was a bit chunky, which I like.  I added the sugar, vanilla and spice to taste.  The sauce cooked down to a nice consistency and I canned it in a BWB for 10 minutes.

Homemade Mayonnaise

Want to add a bit of gourmet taste to your next sandwich? Try one of these on your next ham & cheese.
Homemade Mayonnaise
Yield 1 cup
Time 10 minutes

1 egg yolk or whole egg
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon lemon juice or sherry or white wine vinegar
1 cup neutral oil, like grapeseed or corn, or extra virgin olive oil, or a combination

Put the yolk or egg, mustard, salt, pepper and lemon juice or vinegar in the container of a food processor and turn the machine on. While it's running, add the oil in a slow, steady stream. (Your food processor should have a teeny hole you may never have noticed in the insert -- the "food pusher" -- in the top; if it doesn't, you might want a different food processor.). When an emulsion forms you can add it a little faster. (Again, the little hole makes this unnecessary. ) Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.

Garlic Mayonnaise (Aioli) — Add 2 or more (as many as 8) cloves of garlic, to taste. Oil should be made up of at least half olive oil.

Chile Mayonnaise — Add 1 or 2 dried chilis, like ancho, Thai, or chipotle, soaked in warm water until soft, then drained, patted dry, and stemmed and seeded. (Or use 1 canned chipotle and a little of its adobo sauce.)

Roasted Pepper Mayonnaise — Add 1 roasted red, yellow or orange bell pepper.

Green Sauce, French-Style — Add 1 sprig tarragon, about 10 sprigs of watercress (thick stems removed), 10 chives and the leaves of 5 parsley stems.

Cold Mustard Sauce — Use 1 heaping tablespoon Dijon-style or whole grain mustard. Thin with a tablespoon or two of cream or sour cream to desired consistency.

13 More Ideas for Flavoring Mayonnaise

Add any of the following ingredients, alone or in combination.
1. A pinch of saffron.
2. Up to 1 tablespoon minced strong fresh herb leaves, like rosemary, oregano, tarragon, marjoram, epazote or thyme.
3. Up to 1/4 cup mild fresh herb leaves, like parsley, cilantro, chives, chervil or basil.
4. Up to 1/4 cup minced sweet pickles.
5. 2 tablespoons soy sauce, or to taste.
6. 1 teaspoon wasabi powder, or to taste.
7. 1 teaspoon or more grated citrus zest.
8. At least a teaspoon prepared horseradish.
9. A few dashes of Tabasco, Worcestershire or other prepared sauce.
10. Up to 1/2 cup toasted chopped almonds, walnuts or pecans.
11. 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger.
12. Up to 2 tablespoons chili powder.
13. 2 or 3 anchovies, blended in at the very end; be sure to omit the salt.

Source: Adapted From "How to Cook Everything" by Mark Bittman

I also added some other mayo add-ins at the top of the Recipes page.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Watermelon Jelly

I checked the ads this week and watermelon is very cheap in my local stores. So, why not make some jelly? I found one ad that had 9 lbs of seedless melon for a buck.  My husband is a great watermelon thumper.  He has the knack for finding a good melon.  I think I'll give him the assignment to bring home a great watermelon.

Watermelon Jelly
4 cups seeded, diced watermelon
3-1/2 cups sugar
2 tblsp lemon juice
1/2 of a 6 oz pkg liquid fruit pectin (1 foil pouch)

Place diced watermelon in a blender container or food processor bowl. Cover and blend or process until smooth (should have 2 cups watermelon puree). In a 6 to 8 quart kettle or Dutch oven combine the watermelon puree, sugar and lemon juice. Bring the mixture to a full rolling boil ( a boil that cannot be stirred down) over high heat, stirring constantly with a long handled wooden spoon. Stir in the pectin all at once. Return mixture to a full rolling boil; boil hard for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove kettle or Dutch oven from heat; skim off foam. Ladle jelly into clean, hot half-pint jars, leaving 1/4 inch head space. Wipe jar rims; adjust lids. Allow to cool completely away from drafts, then store in cool, dark place.

Makes 4 half pints.

Week 25

I'm back home.  I've got things to clean and put away.  More later...

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Healthy Cooking with Grains

Here is a great website for using your grains in everyday cooking.  Chef Brad
He spoke at Education Week @ BYU.  Here's a article with a quick summary.Sneaking Healthy Foods into Your Families Meals.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Bushels of Fun

DH and me at the Fair
la kid and hubby

I've died and gone to cholesterol heaven! Deep fried Twinkies, Oreos, candy bars and chocolate covered bacon.

God Bless America

I purchased some cream soup base yesterday, but if you need some in a pinch here's a recipe that can be made right from your food storage ingredients.

Cream Soup Mix
2 c Nonfat dry milk

3/4 c Cornstarch
2 tb Dried minced onion flakes
1/2 ts Pepper
1/4 c Instant chicken bouillon, or other flavor
1 t Crushed basil – optional
1 t Crushed thyme -- optional

Combine all ingredients, mixing well. Store in airtight container. This makes 3 cups of mix, the equivalent to about 9 cans of soup.

To use: combine 1/3 cup of mix with 1 1/4 cups of water in saucepan. Cook and stir until thickened or add mix and water to browned and drained casserole meat and cook in skillet or saucepan with other casserole ingredients or use instead of canned soup in any casserole.
taken from the website
Also from the website is a link to an e-book download, How to Feed a Family of 4 for $200 a Month.

Friday, September 10, 2010

No Chokecherries

DH came back from foraging on the mountain with a couple of chokecherries and that was about it.  He wanted me to sample them. I did and don't ever have to eat another again after spitting out the first one! I did make it to Macey's grocery store today.  It's a local store here in Utah, we don't have them in SoCal.  I bought a couple of #10 cans that were on sale. One was butter powder (178 servings) and the other is cream soup base (42 servings).  I thought that the butter would need to be reconstituted to be used, but you actually add it to the dry ingredients instead.  I'll have to do some research to find out if I need to add additional moisture to the recipes to take the place of the butter.  The cream soup base should come in handy for making quick meals when I have to take dinner in to people.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Chokecherries are in Season

DH has gone with his brother to pick choke cherries, whatever they are.  DH wants me to make him some syrup.  Here is a recipe I found.  Oh, and just so you know, I didn't get 200 lbs of peaches, but I did get enough to can 31 (1/2) pints and two pints of peach jam. I'm tired!

Chokecherry Syrup

8 cups ripe chokecherries, stemmed and un-pitted
1/2 cup water
1/2 of a 2-ounce box of pectin crystals
4 cups (2 pounds) sugar

Place the chokecherries in a large saucepan with the water and mash well. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes. Remove from heat.

Strain mixture through a jelly bag and measure juice.

Add (about) 4 cups of the strained juice in a saucepan, add the pectin crystals and mix well; bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Stir in the sugar and boil hard for 1 minute. Remove from heat.

Skim any foam from the surface and pour into hot sterilized jars. Store in refrigerator.

Makes about 3 pints.

Monday, September 6, 2010

New Page Added

I've added a new page where I will store recipes I'd like to try.  As canning season winds down, I will put food storage recipes on this page also.

Week 25

Remember those grapefruit I was talking about?  I was bummed because they weren't pink grapefruit, just regular grapefruit. I'm not complaining because you see when I juiced them they turned pink.
No, that is not a tube of neon pink food coloring you see on the juicer. Anyway, I juiced 5 large grapefruit and used this recipe:

Pink Grapefruit Marmalade
3 large or 4 small pink grapefruit
2 lemons
3 cups water
3 1/2 cups sugar

Zest the grapefruits and lemons. Cut the grapefruits and lemons in half, and juice them.

Save the lemon peels for later.

Place the grapefruit peel and water in a preserving pan; bring to a full boil. Reduce heat to bring mixture down to a gentle boil. Cover pan, and boil for 20 minutes.

Peels and water.

Add the grapefruit and lemon juices, lemon peels to the pan. Bring mixture to a full boil, then reduce heat and cover. Boil gently for 10 minutes. Stir once or twice during this 10 minutes

Remove lemon peels from pan. Add sugar, stir until dissolved. Bring to full boil, and boil hard, uncovered, until marmalade will gel, about 30 minutes. Keep an eye on this and stir frequently, so as not to burn.

On the way to a rolling boil.

Let marmalade sit for 5-10 minutes, then stir to distribute peel evenly. Ladle into jars, top with caps and rings, and process in a boiling water bath.

Notes: I used 5 large grapefruit and no lemons.  I did however use bottled lemon juice.  I added 3 cups of sugar, instead of 3 1/2.  I forgot to let the marmalade sit before bottling, so I've turned the bottles a couple of times once I heard the 'pock' sound of the lids sealing. 

This recipe made (4) 1/2 pints.  I tried some of the marmalade that was left in the pan.  Since you boil it down without adding pectin, it had an intense flavor.  The color is almost a true apricot color.  It looks attractive and has a sweet-tart flavor. If you give this as a gift, be mindful that people taking certain medications cannot eat grapefruit.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Grapefruit Sunday

We had grapefruits everywhere today at church.  Someone had cleaned out a tree and loaded up their van with bags and bags of the fruit.  I had made some 4 citrus marmalade before, but I'm going to try just the grapefruit by itself in the marmalade.  I'll post results and recipes, later.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

I Admit it, I Cheated...

Yes, it's true.  I'll admit it.  I have cheated the home canning community.  It all started as a harmless trip to Costco to buy paper towels and gas.  This was going to be a quick trip in and out of the store.  But nooo, they pull you in deeper to the store with all the free samples.  How can you turn down free food in this economy, right?  I was doing so well, until I saw a #10 can of pears for under $5.  I thought why not just re can the #10 into more manageable size jars?  My DH is eats pears with his cottage cheese.  I don't do cottage cheese. (It's very much a texture thing and come to think of it, I don't like the taste either.) Before I knew it, the can had jumped from the shelf into my basket.  I hate those jumping cans.

So you see the result, above.  I am a canning cheater.  I heated the pears up, and canned them in a BWB for 10 minutes.  All that just to save hours of peeling, sticky messes and money.  I'm ashamed. (But not too much!)

Friday, September 3, 2010

This is a better view of the street faire.

Street Fair for dinner.

Raspberry Jalapeño Jelly

My daughter works at a Whole Foods Store.  She was mentioning how some vendors were in with products they'd like to feature for the holidays.  One of those items was a raspberry jalapeño jelly. She said it was excellent and ended up taking the entire bottle home. Hmmmmmm...I've made jalapeño jelly...

and I just happen to have peppers and raspberries that I froze.  Hmmmm...
The concoction in the blender is cider vinegar, jalapenos and a red bell pepper. I followed my regular jalapeño jelly recipe then added about a cup of frozen raspberries during the 15-20 minutes of cooking.  The raspberries dissolved into a beautiful red color you see above.
I did add a bit more pectin just to make sure I would get a nice set.

The taste was very good. A nice bold raspberry flavor and then about 10 seconds later the heat hits you. Surprise.  It's great with cream cheese and Wheat Thins.  Want to play a trick on someone?
Spread this on toast and watch their face as the realization hits that it's spicy.  I'm mean, aren't I?

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Pasta Sauce with Mushrooms

I told you I would be making pasta sauce. I decided to pressure can the sauce, so I wouldn't have to add extra acid to it.  If you BWB the sauce, you have to follow a specific recipe to get the acid proportions correct and usually you still have to add citric acid or purchased lemon juice.  I like to wing it, no recipe, just taste.
I began by dropping tomatoes into boiling water for 60 seconds.  That was followed by a short dip in ice water.  This makes the skins easy to remove.  I also cleaned some onions from the garden, chopped them and started to caramelize them with olive oil.  (Picture on the right).  I added chopped garlic toward the end.  Again, no measurements, I was just going with it.  I placed the tomatoes in a pan and simmered them for 20 minutes.  The photo on the left shows the tomatoes going through a food mill once they were cooked. The food mill gives you a nice clean tomato sauce or juice, no seeds no cores.  Next comes the fun part.  Reducing and
adding your favorite spices.  I decided just to use what I had around the house and not purchase anything else. I used home grown onions frozen garlic and canned mushrooms.  I added a can of chicken broth for flavor and salt content, parsley, Italian Seasoning and a bit of brown sugar.  You can put pretty much whatever you want to at this point.  I also added a touch of Chili Oil, just to give it a bit of kick.  You want to simmer everything together to marry the flavors and reduce the sauce to a thicker consistency.  I also added some red and yellow bell peppers without sauteing them.  They will cook enough in the pressure canner.  I start tasting at this point.  Sometimes more salt, some pepper, whatever you want.

When the sauce was the consistency I wanted and the flavor was right, I pressure canned 2 pints and (5) 1/2 pints.  I had about a 1/2 left in the pan and that was enough for DH and me to have for dinner.