Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Monkey Bread

Gina's HomeJoys blog is so much fun for me to read!

This week we tried Monkey Bread

It's a basic sweet bread dough, dipped in melted butter and rolled in sugar, cinnamon (and I used a bit of allspice)
I happily cheated by sticking the bread making machine on while we were at church in the morning. Then it was the easiest and quickest thing to plop them in butter, shuffle them around in sugar and stick in the oven. The kids loved helping and we sat watching them to see if we'd get any "pop offs" (giggle) but they all stayed in the tin.

This bread pudding was marvelous. You know how the recipe says milk, cream and eggs.. well, I replaced the cream with lemon butter (that my lovely friend made just for me - effortlessly with her Thermomix.).
I've made it three times since  and each time it gets gobbled up faster than cake! Simple things are often the best.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Correction - All time favourite

So having a long soak in the bath I grabbed a couple of favourite books to paw over. I love having my own copies of books as I can read them in the bath and don't worry if it gets damp or slightly dipped if I drop off to sleep (or absent mindedly dog ear the page). Today I realised that it's not Barbara's year of local eating, or the Seakingdom's historical insights that I like the most it's this:

Yes, that's right I'm officially out of my tree and rummaging in the undergrowth.

I have so much fun and get so much enjoyment out of reading about how to care for fruit and nut trees. Imagining my own land plan and choosing the fruit trees I want to own one day.

(Dreamily slow and happy exhale) Here's my list so far:

Dwarf White Shatoot Mulberry (long and white, super sweet)
Curry leaf tree
Peanut butter fruit tree (just out of curiosity - think of all those nut allergic kids out there, they can try it!)
Pecan nut
Native finger lime (the black skinned one with red jubes inside)
Mango for Sydney weather - yes there is one!
Kiwi - that's 1 male plant to 7-9 females so that one will have to wait a while.
Cinnamon tree
Blackcurrant bush
Dwarf Macadamia

I think maybe the Dwarf Mac and Mulberry, Curry tree and finger lime are the only ones I could accommodate so far and keep small in large pots. Oh but I love to dream and plan away!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Inspiring blog

I love blogs that inspire you to plan, imagine and do better. This blog:

Home Joys is one of my favourite blogs. Gina is a Mennonite who home makes, grows and preserves EVERYTHING! - it seems. With a foot very firmly in the tech of today and a foot enjoying the simple life, I love her ability to do so much and immerse herself in her family, her religion and have purpose and joy in life.

Mind you, this is blog land we're talking about here, and there are alot of blogs that just show the polished best side (not like the green scabby lemons on one of my prev posts!) so I'm not sure if she ever has a bad day, is really grumpy or wants to pack it in, eat chips and watch TV all day. I doubt it :o)

Take a look for yourself. Very inspiring (and how cute is that baby!) Oh, to have an ounce of her energy!

Your friend in blog land

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

All time favourite -ish.. maybe

I'm not really a booky kind of person. I enjoy reading instructional books about making soap, chook pens, cheese etc (though not actually getting around to making any). Books that drag me in too much take my mind away from everyday life and I end up resenting having to live it instead of reading my book - so those are out.

Lately I've been into family history (well, for a few years now) and I've been fascinated to find the inherited genetic traits and those environmental factors that make us who we are. 
I've finally finished this one:
I loved it, my good view of him increased and few people from our book group (that I sparsely attend) say that their opinion of him has changed for good. GOOD.

This is the other one I'm finishing up. It's more up my street and family tree:
If you didn't have an understanding for the coming about of the peoples of Britain then you will after this. It explains how the Irish had such a huge hand in the education of the common folk throughout Europe even to Africa. How the Welsh, being the original rulers and Britons, together with the Scots managed to keep up their fight for their language thanks to the protestant religion.
Highly enlightening, an objective view of Celtic history that's been very well researched.

Ok so my FAVOURITE BOOK at the moment is:

My goodness how this book creates excitement and proactivity in my life! It's a down to earth look at self sufficiency with no judgment or condescension on those that don't. I'm not in love with her writing style or the order of the first few chapters but I did love the family stories and interesting facts along the way.
I love her journey of allowing turkeys to "nooky" naturally like they haven't done for decades, her daughter's chicken business and all the little funny quirks along the way.

I'm not sure I'd be bothered to do the entire year like she did, but in my corner of the world it pushes me to use every scrap of space for food production! I want gluts of food like she has. I want to preserve and share and give things that have taken my time, effort and careful thought. 

I am so lucky living in Australia where we can grow all year round. There aren't those black hole months where nothing will grow. I'm reading it again to motivate my post surgery butt (well, my mind at the moment) into action and get help weeding.

Here's the site about the book and if you image google it there's alot of interesting links too.