Thursday, June 21, 2012

You know your loved when...

You know your loved when your standing outside the church building after evening services talking with friends and the temperamental, outside lamp light goes out and everything is black. Then your friends whom you were talking to pull out their phones and use the light from the phone to light up their lips so that I can still read them and continue talking till the aforementioned lamp light decided to turn back on.

This made me laugh and touched my heart at the same time and I felt very loved!

Just thought I would share this with you :)

Steph

Monday, June 18, 2012

Baking Bacon

In case you were wondering why I have not posted about my progress on my second 21 Day Sugar Detox, well that is because I have postponed it till August. We have too much going on right now, we are preparing for our camping trips taking place this summer. I am trying new recipes, and figuring out what to bring for meals and snacks. So far I have some ideas...

1. Hobo meals
2. Omelet in a bag
3. Pancake mix, flours premixed in a bag with instructions on outside of bag
4. Oatmeal (gf oats of course) mixed with either some dry, organic milk or some protein powder (will have to test this out, I have some Sun Warrior Brown Rice Protein powder that I want to try), dried fruit and nuts, premixed in a bag with instructions also written on bag.

Quick, easy and cheap (but high quality) is the name of the game for me, if you have any other great ideas on what I can bring, please share!

Now on to Baking bacon!



If you are a regular reader of my blog, you probably know by now I like to make easy but nutritious meals. I'm not a fan of washing a lot of dishes either, so I try to find ways to minimize the use of dishes, utensils and bake wear that I use.

We love bacon, but after making it on the stove for years and hating all the splattery mess that goes with it, not to mention the stuck on bacon bits at the bottom of my cast iron skillet that I like to not have to soak and scrub if possible to maintain my nice seasoning on it. I decided there must be an easier way, so I researched online to see if anyone was baking bacon in the oven, and sure enough there were many blog posts on the subject. After reading several recipes, I got the gist of it and tried my hand at it and now I love it and will not make bacon any other way....well ok except when we are camping, I will use my skillet :)

I like Trader Joe's Apple Smoked, thick cut, nitrate free bacon and that is what I used, be aware that if you use a thinner bacon the time will be shorter so keep an eye on it while it's on the oven!

Baked Bacon

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment, it is actually better to have your parchment be larger than the cookie sheet as it will make keeping your cookie sheet clean much easier.

Lay out your bacon side by side each other till you have filled the pan.



The package of Trader Joe's bacon is a rather small pack so I am able to bake it all at one time.

When oven is preheated, put your pan in and bake for 20-25 min. That is it...so easy and much less messy!

If you are using regular sliced bacon, I would bake for about 10 min. or so.

Wait till bacon fat is cool and solidified if you can, before gathering up the parchment corners and dumping in trash.

If you have more bacon than what can fit on one cookie sheet and you want to bake it all in one batch instead of waiting for the first to finish, line another cookie sheet with parchment like the first and lay the rest of your bacon down on it. Put both sheets on the oven, but half way through baking I would take the bottom sheet and switch it with the top one, to ensure more even cooking.

This method is what I have found to work for me, I hope it helps you in your future bacon endeavors!

Steph

Monday, June 4, 2012

Counting my blessings!

There is a song we sing in church called, "Count Your Blessings" that I love, I find myself singing it at home quite frequently as of late. Sometimes I forget how blessed I really am and get caught up in feeling sorry for myself when life doesn't go my way. Here is the last verse of the song "So amid the conflict, whether great or small, do not be discouraged, God is over all; Count your many blessings, angels will attend, help and comfort give you to your journey's end"

I am going to be over here in my little part of the world counting my many blessings, naming them one by one, feel free to join in with your beautiful voice too!

Much has happened this past week, we've started grilling on our grill to avoid heating up the house. It's been very hot during the day, but wonderfully cool at night. I plan on enjoying to the fullest, these cool evenings while it lasts!

We decided the first thing we were going to grill would be hamburgers, thanks to Kade our oldest son. He was craving a big juicy cheeseburger since we don't eat out anymore. Now that we have a gluten free household, that meant we needed some gluten free hamburger buns and I'll tell ya, store bought gf hamburger buns are not very palatable! I used the Udi's Copycat Bread recipe by Extraordinary Life in my previous post and made the 2 loaf recipe. I divided up the dough into 12 equal amounts on my greased Crown Muffin pans and put them into the oven to rise for 30 min. according to the recipe instructions. I however only baked them for 30 min. instead of 70 min. You do not need Crown Muffin pans to make hamburger buns, just use parchment and two cookie sheets, divide the dough into 6 piles on each sheet, then flatten and round each pile as best you can. Put into oven and let rise for 30 min. and bake for 30 min. You do need to let them cool or they will go flat and the texture of the bread will be different. However if you decided to use them as rolls, you could definitely eat them while hot.

Gorgeous!

Perfect!

My bun + My Hubby's 1/2 lb. juicy burger = Drool worthy deliciousness!




Look at the great deal I found at iherb...

Excuse the messy room and focus on the 10# Now brand Mega Pack Tapioca  Flour bag (and two of my cuties).

I use Tapioca starch flour in the Udi's Copycate Bread recipe as well as many other gluten free baking recipes, so it was a wonderful find when I saw this 10# bag on iherb for less than $20.00! I have an iherb code that will get you $5.00 off your first order, just enter FAT433 at checkout. If you are already an iherb customer...what are you waiting for, go order some!

We have a couple of camping trips planned this summer, so I've pulled out some of my camping books I have collected over the years.


This is not even all of them...yes, I am a cookbook addict...or should I say book addict :) I have a few coming from the Library to check out as well. I am looking for easy recipes for our trip. Not just easy, but healthy too.

Anybody got a recipe they would like to share?

Any tips on gluten free camping would be wonderful and welcome!

Steph