Sunday, November 06, 2011

sauerkraut and pumpkins

Sauerkraut fermenting while bread dough rises.
Yesterday, was, as mentioned, filled with various and sundry domestic activities ~ mainly food based, which is always a welcome chore. I've started reading and exploring the recipes of Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon with some great results. We've been enjoying oatmeal like never before using the process of soaking and fermenting the oats the night before cooking with just one extra cup of water in the morning. Wonderfully chewy satisfying stuff and still good the next day reheated. As we've been rife with eggs for most of the summer (laying is starting to slack for the season now), I followed instructions for making eggs, dare I say, sunny-side up ~ using, dare I say, butter! Just yummy. According to Nourishing Traditions, sauerkraut is the winter salad and appears to be very easy to prepare. Easy and fun. Not so easy is the shredding, but once done, the fun part is letting a youth mash the shreddings for 10 minutes until the juices are released and mixed with the sea salt and caraway seeds. (Whey is also supposed to be added, but I haven't made my own yet. In this case, the instructions are to add another tablespoon of salt.) Then that whole mess gets mashed down into a wide-mouth quart jar to sit on the counter 3 days. After that, the resulting kraut can live in the fridge.

If you want to check out some of these recipes before purchasing the book (which is worth purchasing, in my opinion) you can have a gander at The Nourishing Cook blog. Here recipes are being done ala Julie and Julia so you'll find nearly all of them and then some.

Applying the design.
Then Bennie and I tried our hand at this Martha Stewart craft from Hell. Having this one white pumpkin from the previous holiday, we decided to make this one up for Thanksgiving. (Side note here: Is anyone noticing that xmas shows are on TV already?  The flipping Grinch was on TBS last night! Is the economy that hard up in this nation that corporations are shoving xmas down our throats all too early and sparking insane consumerist activity? Another woman and I were standing in Walmart on a recent shopping excursion baffled as to why we were hearing xmas music only a week after Halloween.) Well, all in all, the surface carving finished out okay, but if I do this again next year (after removing the fork from my left eye), I think I'll come up with my own design that's a little less anxiety producing.
The pin sticking to transfer pattern.

Bennie doing some painstaking pin sticking.

The transferred pattern ready for some controlled gouging.

Gouging away.


Voila! A Thanksgiving centerpiece!

Bennie and I serving up dinner after a groovy day.
And it was such a lovely day yesterday, a complete an utter contrast from the previous stormy weekend, we went for a walk with the dogs. It seemed as though everyone in the community was out and about enjoying the weather. Dirk, Bennie and I took Bodhi and Crystal down to the beach and let them have a run. (Dirk is the only one who suggests this. I don't like to let them run as I'm certain they'll run off most times.) It was good for all of us to get out. Fresh air and sun light! Yum!

Then we made this recipe from Martha Stewart which was considerably less hellatious than the pumpkin carving.

It's a treasure to have smoothly run days like these. Days where from beginning to end it all goes okay.

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