Christina's Country

The Magickal, Merry Meanderings of Gypsy Soul!

Friday Roundup: Country Coconut Candy Recipe ~ Gone Quiltin’ ~ The 1st Bread from the New CookBook ~ And Almost Free Food!

I really needed to make bread today. One thing about home made bread is that it does not last as long as the store bought kind. That is both good and bad in its own special way, but I think that the good outweighs the bad!

Here’s why… After a few days, home made bread gets, well…stale! This is bad for a sandwich crafting, but it is good for making breadcrumbs, croutons and such. And, if you have a bit too much, your feathered friends, be they domestic pampered poultry or wild ones alike, will be happy to lend a beak in clean up!

The Farmhouse Loaf   So out came the new cookbook “Bread Machine: How to Prepare and Bake the Perfect Loaf” by Jennie Shapter ( below) that I found on my thrift shopping expedition the other day. I chose the Farmhouse Loaf (plain though it may be, with a name like that, how could I pass it by!). I put all ingredients into my bread maker ( also below ) and let her rip! Before you could wink an eye, the smell of fresh, baking bread filled the house. This, of course, led to taste testing just one , teensy end slice of this delicious bread. Nice chewy crust, good flavor. I like it! I am encouraged and will be trying another loaf , perhaps a sweeter one for toasting, this weekend! ( I’d do it now, but, alas, business calls and I need to get some work done before the weekend arrives!).

~~~tiny heart ~~~

   Now I am in a mood to make something else… hmmmm… How about something coco-nutty?

These is this old timey coconut candy that comes in a bar. Sometimes it has stripes of pink and brown on it,and I love it! Unfortunately, it is made with some not-so-desirable ingredients, but “Never Fear! I have reworked it into something, just as delicious, but not as chemical laden! as they say, there really is more than one way to skin a cat!

Here it is, my….

Country Coconut Candy Recipe

1 cup of unsweetened coconut flakesCountry Coconut Candy

1 tbs coconut oil

1 tbs honey

1/2 tsp vanilla extract, pure of course!

a pinch of salt

Optional: a small handful of mini chocolate chips… I opted for them!

Now, here’s what you need to do… Are your ready?

Put all of  the ingredients, except for the chocolate chips,  into your food processor, or my favorite toy in the world, the Ninja (below) and whir!

Now stir in the chips if you want them and pat whatever is left after the initial tasting into a nice disk or a rectangle on a saucer and let it chill till it firms up a bit. Cut and consume!

Yummy and soooooo much better for you than those other coconut candy bars!

~~~tiny heart ~~~

   Yesterday I was at Walmart by necessity, (yeah, that’s it!)  of my need for more recycled printing paper and canning jar labels which they had none of.  They were clean out of them. No more for the season in fact! sadly,  I was not even the only woman standing before the canning items display, wringing her hands , eyes frantically scanning the shelves for that Gotta-Be-There last pack of them. And, although I love those fancy little labels as much as the next gal, I ended up opting for plain white ones that I found in the office supplies department instead and feeling a bit thriftier for the experience! becasue those labels were 70 to a pack for only $1!

My Fantastic & Frugal Cotton Prints!

My Fantastic & Frugal Cotton Prints!

Annyy waaaay… I was also there for cloth. Lets be honest… Who do I think that I’m fooling? I was there for the cloth and the office supplies were a distant mental second! Walmart, all thing considered, really has a very good selection of cotton print cloth for the money. I chose none over about $4.50 per yard, and of that, I only need partial yards anyway for a trial ( mini) quilt I wan to do in the style of the water color quilts from the new (thrift store) book “More Quick Watercolor Quilts” I got the other day (below). Most of the pieces of cloth that I chose came to under a buck apiece!

I figured that my cat is so old that it is always best to have her napping on something besides just the top of a chair! And she is used, after 20 years with us, to the finer things in life, so  hand made mini quilt is the perfect solution. I also wanted to see how my selection of prints fared in creating the look I am after before embarking upon a King Sized quilting safari!

Now all I have to do is finish up the pair of socks, the wool sweater for the hubby and the cotton tank top (which I growing less and less fond of by the moment, thus, the lack of progress!) that I am knitting.  It is Father’s Day this weekend, right? I think I’m going to  need a few extra days…. or hands…. or something! Anyway, who doesn’t! Lets all relax, and enjoy it!

tiny heartChristina

 

P.S.

Oh yeah, I almost forgot! The Almost Free Food! I called a local farm market and asked what becomes of their unsold, “scratch and dent” produce, and they said that they sell it for .59 cents a pound! Perfect for feeding The Ladies ( our hens) or maybe even for us, for canning, etc.

Grocery stores generally will not even throw away the produce where it could possibly be found and consumed, leading to possible law suits, etc. This is because once they are expired, they are considered not fit for human consumption. But some local farmers markets will sell perfectly edible fruits and veggies that have a little bruise or are just not as pretty as the rest for far less. Consider the apples I am getting. They normally sell for $1.20 plus per pound, depending upon the variety, and I am getting them for just .59 cents per pound. Not bad!

There is another farm near by that puts together HUGH baskets of fresh produce that is , again, just not perfect, and sells the whole basket ( sometimes as much as 10pounds of various produce) for $5! I include that farm on my patrol route too!

Sorry folks, all names are kept secret to protect my sources, but you can make a few phone calls and ask your local markets about their unsold produce too! It is wise thrifty beyond what most folks would even think of doing!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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