In the Kitchen...
A friend dropped off some water kefir grains for me, so I've started a batch of water kefir - a fizzy, delicous, probiotic drink. More on that when my first successful batch is completed.
At the same time, my first batch of (hopefully) new-and-improved green tea kombucha has moved from it's first ferment to the second ferment (bottled and kept at room temp for another week). Can't wait to try it next week!
I turned some left-over cauliflower rice into a fried rice for tea one night - cooked a chicken breast and put aside, sauted some onion and veges in a little coconut oil, added salt, herbs and soy sauce. Tossed in the cauli rice and cooked, chopped chicken, and cooked for a few minutes - done. Was yum with a good dollop of the green tomato chutney I made a couple of years ago.
I also used cauli rice as a base for a tender, yummy stew, made with some gravy beef I'd bought on special some time back, then divided into suitable sized portions and frozen.
I also made a batch of Curdito - South American sauerkraut - which has cabbage, carrot and onions in it. Making sauerkraut with homegrown cabbage is so simple and such a pleasure, because of the high-water content of the cabbages compared to bought ones. This sauerkraut is delicious! Recipe to come.
A while back, I had harvested red clover flowers and set them in a jar covered with vodka to create a tincture. This week I strained them and put the tincture in a clean jar, pouring some of it into a dropper bottle for easy administration. Dropper bottles are available in 6 packs from iherb.com at a reasonable cost, and useful for many herbal remedies. More on this to come.
Lunch one day: fresh NZ spinach, green cabbage and rainbow chard from the garden, Curdito (above), fresh tomatoes from the garden, my new dressing, and some pickled cucumbers. Such a visual feast, and such a wonderful explosion of various tastes and textures on the tongue, jam packed with freshness and nutrition.
We had a shared lunch at church today, so I made a banana cake from frozen bananas, and a quiche which used up some pastry from the freezer, and some of my abundance of eggs. Both were quickly devoured!
In the Garden....
These two large plants at the back of this patch (below) are marshmellow in their second year of growth (6-8 feet tall). One harvests the roots after three years to use to make genuine marshmellow, or for medicinal purposes. I've never grown it before, so fascinated to see how big it will get next year! Last year they were a few stems with flowers, up to a metre high. Died off completely in winter. To the right is a close up of the flowers.
In the foreground are yacon, and behind them cosmos.
I was going to easily get through this week without spending a dime, but on Saturday I decided I really wanted to make some of my delicious pasta sauce, and needed some garlic, onions and celery for it and a couple of other things I want to make. So I went ahead and brought those - cost $14.22. I could have got them less from the market garden in the next town, but since neither of us were going that way for anything else, it wasn't worth the drive.
This week's allowance: +$50.00
This week's spend: -$14.22
Handy Hints & Thrifty Tips
Easy to see, clean recipes: I keep my personal recipes in sheet protectors in a binder. When I want to use one, I take it out and hang it using two pegs onto a stretchy wire such as is used for net curtains, which stretches across my kitchen window at eye level. The recipe is right where I can see it while working, and it doesn't get any splatter, or is easily wiped clean if it does.
Best ever drying rack: If you have high ceilings, suspend a rack or the side of a child's cot on pulleys from the ceiling. It's the perfect place to dry laundry in winter, or hang up herbs, seed heads etc to dry in summer. Easily lowered into reach to load, and then pulled up out of the way to hang in the warmest part of the room - near the ceiling.