Friday, January 27, 2012

the most delicious soup EVER!!!

This has to be the most delicious soup ever. The other night I wanted to make soup for supper. Not just any soup. Something new. I came across this recipe for Chicken Gnocchi Soup on a blog that I follow. It sounded so yummy. I decided to make it a few nights ago and was very happy with the results. Here is how I did it. I had to double the recipe.

Chicken Gnocchi Soup

1 lb. mini Gnocchi (I used regular)
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, finely diced
4 ribs celery, finely diced
4 carrots, finely diced or shredded
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons flour
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup greek yogurt (I used plain)
2 cups milk
2 chicken breasts, cooked and diced
14 ounces chicken broth
2 cups fresh spinach, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon parsley
Parmesan cheese (optional)

Drop gnocchi into a pot of boiling water and cook until it floats, about 2 minutes. Drain and set aside.

In a large saucepan, melt the butter and oil and add onion, celery, carrots and garlic. Saute until the veggies are soft. Add flour, stir and cook about 1 minute. Add the cream, yogurt and milk. Bring to a simmer, then add the chicken.

Once the mixture has thickened, add the broth and return to a simmer. It will thicken again. Then stir in the cooked gnocchi, spinach and parsley and simmer until soup and herbs are heated throughout. Top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese
This was really a good soup. I had my doubts about it at first. I have never eaten gnocchi but to my surprise, I really liked it. So did my whole family.

This soup, like most any soup freezes well. Make a huge batch and freeze for later!

God Bless!

Monday, January 16, 2012

yummy treat

Here lately, we have been making lots of homemade ice cream with our raw cow's milk and raw cream. We usually make either vanilla or chocolate ice cream. The other day I ran across a recipe for Raw Cookie Dough Bites on The Nourishing Home site I follow.

 I thought it might be a treat to make some of these to enjoy with our homemade ice cream. Boy,am I glad we did. They are delicious with the vanilla ice cream. Thought I would share this yummy treat!

Raw Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bites

1/2 cup creamy raw almond butter
1/4 cup, plus 1 Tablespoon raw honey
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup, plus 1 Tablespoon coconut flour
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
The original recipe called for ground flax seeds, I didn't have any, so, we just left that out.

In a large bowl, mix together raw almond butter, honey and vanilla until creamy and well blended. In a separate bowl, combine the coconut flour and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix well to combine. Use your hands to knead the dough. Fold in the chocolate chips. If the mixture is too wet, add more flour. Scoop out tablespoon size portions and roll into one-inch balls.
Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

You can also use all natural peanut butter to make Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Dough Bites!

God Bless!!!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Homemade French Bread

Today the little ones helped me grind grain and make a loaf of homemade french bread.
They are so curious about things. Earlier they were sorting different colored beans for some of their  school today and I explained that the beans they were sorting could be put in our Nutrimill and ground into powder. I guess they were curious how something as hard as beans could be turned into flour. They have seen me grind grains before but not up close like today. The had fun. After we had ground our grains into flour, we decided to make some french bread for supper tonight. I used a different recipe than I usually do. I turned out pretty good. I am still getting use to how different things taste when you use freshly ground flour. I have had this recipe for a long time. I cut it out of a magazine I used to get in the mail. Here it is....

French Bread

2 cups bread flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
(I used fresh ground soft white wheat)
1 Tablespoon yeast
2 teaspoons organic sugar, I have also used Sucanat
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup warm water
2 Tablespoons olive oil

Combine the flour, yeast, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Stir in the warm water and oil. Mix until it is incorporated. It will be sticky. Pour out onto a floured surface and knead , adding flour to prevent sticking. Knead about 10 minutes and then transfer to greased bowl, turning to coat. Cover and let rise. When it has doubled in size, punch down, divide dough in half and shape into loaves. We made one large loaf but I think two smaller loaves would be best.

 Transfer to french loaf pan or baking sheet. Place bread in cold oven and turn on to 400 degrees and bake for about 30 to 35 minutes or until loaves are puffed, golden and sound hollow when tapped on bottom.

(Personally, how do you tap an extremely hot loaf of bread on bottom!!!!!) Transfer to wire rack to cool slightly.

Monday, January 9, 2012

unplanned events.....

Today was a planned day that quickly turned into an unplanned day. Mommy was too sick to do the fun "Pizza Party" unit study we had planned, so the oldest bug, decided to be very domestic today. She pickled eggs, made a couple different kinds of homemade butter and cooked a few meals! Her first attempt to pickle eggs was a success!!!! Here is how she did it.
She took some of our beautiful chicken eggs that we gather everyday and boiled them. Once they are hard boiled, put them into an ice bath and let sit a couple of minutes. This helps with the peeling process.

(The second bug helping in the peeling process.)

(The oldest bug showing off her button quail eggs!)

While the eggs were boiling, she made a pickling brine that consists of 1 quart of vinegar, 1/2 cup salt, 1 cup water, 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder and a dash of cayenne powder and about 6 cloves of garlic, quartered. Bring this up to a simmer and then remove from the heat. Now she put her boiled eggs in jars and added the brine.

Be sure to leave a 1" headspace when filling your jars with the brine. Once the jars are filled, be sure to wipe the jar opening with a damp cloth before placing your flats and rings on. You want your jars to seal properly. Now place your jars in a boiling water canner and process for 15 minutes. Remove your jars from the canner and let cool for 15 to 20 hours to make sure they are sealed. Here is the finished product!

Such a blessing!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

pizza party all week

We have all been under the weather here lately. Today I think we are all feeling better. Our plans for this week is to have a pizza party, each and every day! The bugs are really excited about having pizza to eat everyday. I recently purchased an Amanda Bennett unit study entitled "Pizza Party".
Pizza Party

We have done a few of her unit studies and really enjoyed them. Everything is ready for tomorrow.

Stay tuned!