Quick like a bunny

Quick like a bunny
Home in Pflugerville, TX.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Lotion bar recipe

This simple recipe for lotion bars is all over the Internet. Yet, they sell them online for such a high price. Now that I am using non-xeno and phyto estrogen products. This is my perfect non messy lotion replacement.

You use:

1 oz. beeswax
1 oz. non phyto-estrogen oil ( I used almond)
1 oz. hard oil like Shea, Avocado ect. ( I am cheap and used 92 melt point coconut oil, it is hydrogenated, but I am not eating it and holds well in the heat.)
High heat silicone molds that are 4 oz. or say hold 1/2 cup. (I used 1/2 cup high heat silicone pinch cups I found at Walmart in the kitchen utensil area) Think out of the box if you need to.

If you want a softer bar for like; massage, winter months or preference. Just use 1 oz. beeswax and 2 oz. oil of choice.

 Today I made some bars with virgin coconut oil with a melt point of 76 because my husband wanted a softer bar. Lets face it, he may not like this one or all oil and wax. These bars are not for everyone. My hubby has soft skin from growing up in a climate that has hard winters. Unlike me whom grew up in Southern California with a pool in the backyard and beach 30-45  minutes (depending on traffic) away. Seldom used sunscreen unless at the beach. At the age of almost 43 my skin is freckled, dry, and lets just say, "loosing it's luster." I cannot say that I would trade all my fun in the sun for more youth,  and or beauty.

How to make this lotion bar.

Take a large pot and add a few inches of water. Place that on the stove top and put a glass or stainless steel bowl on top. Heat the water on medium to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer. (Double boiler style) Add beeswax and let melt. Then add other ingredients one at a time. Letting each melt in first. Mix with wood utensil.

Now have your mold ready and maybe sitting on a plate or cookie sheet. Using an oven mitt or like, take the bowl off of pot and carefully, and without getting water in the molds, pour the hot liquid mixture evenly into the mold or molds. After setting empty bowl aside. You can just let the lotion bars set up on the counter. If it is a really hot day or you are in a hurry then you can put the mold or molds in the fridge to set. When they are ready, un-mold them by turning them upside down and while hold the sides of mold, push on the top of bottom until the bar slides out.
I keep mine in a large unsealed, tea bag. Then keep that in a ziplock.

I got my oils from soapgoods.com But their are many other great places to get ingredients. I got my beeswax from Ebay. Straight from bee farmers. It smells just like honey. Yum. Good luck and have fun.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Easy Chocolate Rice Crispies Recipe


These treats are easy and so yummy. It has been a holiday sweet I have made in my house for years.

Get a big bowl and put 10 cups of Rice Crispies in it and have a utensil ready to mix.

Now get a pot and fill it with a few inches of water and place a glass or stainless steel bowl on top. Bring water to a boil on medium then lower to a simmer. Weigh out 1 1/2 lbs (24 oz.) Ghirardelli melting chocolate or other good melting chocolate.


Put the 1 1/2 lbs chocolate into the double boiler bowl to melt. Use a wooden utensil to stir occasionaly.



The pot and bowl are hot so keep an oven mitt on hand. Take one large and one medium cookie sheet out and line with wax paper. When the chocolate is melted turn off the heat, take an oven mitt and pull out the bowl from water bath. It may be a good idea to have a hand towel in the other hand to hold the bottom of the wet hot bowl with your other hand, while you other hand with the oven mitt has a grip of the side of the bowl. Do not want any spills, brakes or burns. Besides losing precious chocolate.

You can rest your chocolate bowl (for a moment if you need to) next to the bowl of Rice Crispies. Grab the wood utensil used to stir the chocolate during the melting process, pick up that bowl of hot chocolate, with oven mitt and pour it into the big bowl of Rice Crispies. Scrape as much chocolate as you can, into the cereal. Set aside your bowl of scraped chocolate and wood utensil. Take another utensil and stir the melted chocolate and Rice Crispies until they are all mixed together.

Pour onto the prepared cookie sheets with wax paper. Spread with utensil. You can let this set on the counter or put it in the fridge for about 15-20 minutes to set, firm up, solidify.


When they are set you can just break them up into chunks and pieces. Stick them in ziplock bags and they are ready. My family loves these. they are so good. One big Rice Crispies box at the grocery store will give you 2 batches worth of these nummy tweets. Hee...

Do not forget to lick the chocolate spoon and bowl or have a helper to do it for you.


Have a great holiday.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Kava Chocolates Recipe

Kave root powder can be found at Konakavafarms.  Kava is for 18 an older crowd. Do not drink alcohol while eating these. Do not take if pregnant or lactating. Do not take Kava or give Kava to people if you or they are on anti-depressants plus have a history of anxiety attacks. (I have given Kava chocolates which is a small amount of Kava per chocolate, to people on anti-depressants and whom did not have a history of anxiety attacks with no ill affect).

Kave root makes you relaxed and is great to keep the peace during family holiday gatherings.

Ingredients:

6.5 oz. Raw Almonds ground in food processor or place in a plastic bag and smash with rolling pin.
(you can use any nut of choice. Sesame seeds work to. No processing needed for the seeds.)
1 oz. Kava root powder.
Konakava farms has their root powder ground real fine now. They have great shipping prices and I am happy to buy from them.
16 oz. (1 lb.) Ghirardelli melting chocolate.
Other melting chocolate is fine. Just make sure it is good chocolate.


Get the nuts ground.

Measure your kava powder. A small digital scale works great. This also equals 5 T.

 Set that aside.

Measure and weigh your chocolate out.

Put a couple of inches of water in a pot and add a steel or glass bowl on top of it. Bring to a boil on medium then lower to simmer. Add chocolate and monitor, stirring with wooden or high heat resistant utensil. when melted add nuts and Kava powder. Mix. Turn off stove top.

 You can then take a heat resistant cloth or oven mitten and take bowl of chocolate off the pot and place it on counter next to your molds. I have one high heat silicone mold and two old plastic ones. Yes, the plastic ones need to go, but it is what I had on hand. I have had those plastic molds for about seven to eight years and they work, even though they are warping and starting to crack. This Silicone mold I recently bought works so much better compared to the plastic ones. (Just FYI) No, they are not perfect pro-grade looking chocolates. They are my beautiful imperfections that make individual pieces of chocolate satisfaction.

Take a spoon and spoon the chocolate into the molds. when molds are filled, drop the molds by kind of tapping them on the counter several times. this gets rid of bubbles and settles the chocolate. Now you can let them set up on the counter or if the weather is warm you can put them in the fridge for 15-20 minutes, even a bit longer is O.K.

When fully set. Turn upside down and push the back of each mold onto a clean counter or plate ect..
Place in plastic bags or containers. do not store in the fridge or freezer. store in a cool dry place..


Let them sit over night before eating one. This lets the kava marinate.

Yum.

Kava me..

This is the second year I have made Kava root powder chocolates and I love them. Enjoy.

Acorns from Oak trees, Gathering, Processing and Eating

These acorns I gathered from my neighbors back yard. I also gathered some from some ones front yard. I asked first of course and they were more light in color. These in particular are more beautiful. I think both acorns that I gathered are a medium tannin acorn and both needed  alot of processing. I picked these in October and read online that August-September is best to start picking. I am late and yet new to this. Trying to get back to a simple diet of generations past. More California Native American Indian. I am integrated to survive and yet must walk backwards to continue forwards. The riddle of knowing, but never speaking of.

Picking these were relaxing and popping off the tops, very easy. Cracking these puppies open and separating the nut from the shell was painful, tedious, labor. For this batch, I cracked them open, and put them in a pot of water. Drained when done and blended the nuts in a food processor.

Take out the wormy ones and the ones with the most black rot in them(optional of course). Like the one you see in my bowl. My ancient nutcracker is in the pic. I had bought it a few years ago for 10 cents at a yard sale, simply out of a nostalgic memory of my childhood. Who would of thought I would actually use it, and this much. My conclusion is that there must be a better nut cracker out there. Ouch.


These ones look bigger than my second tree batch. Will have to go back with a ladder for more of these. My neighbor also has a burr acorn tree, but the squirrels seemed to take them all by the time I noticed she had these acorn. (Taste test to see where your bitter in the nut starts.)

Like I said, tedious job. So, take your time. You can keep nuts in a pot, bowl, or container of water over a few days while cracking them open. Just drain and refresh the water everyday or as you see it get dark in color.

For this batch I did a cold water drain to leach out the tannins. See the light brown tannins coming out.

Many and much draining. I used a thin piece of cloth over a strainer. I put this over a large glass container, only so I could observe this process. It is not important. My second batch I used another method and will tell you at the end of this method demonstration.

Moving it around with hands, or other tool, a clean stick would even do. This helps the tannins leach quicker.

Kneading good.


Still draining.

Using a stick, I mean utensil now.


More.


And more.


Now I wrap and knead.


Twist.

Knead.


Checking the meal.

Rechecking my drain water. Looking much more clear now. Taste testing along the way. Now you are done when the nut is tolerable in taste. Almost no bitter should be present.

More draining, just in sink now.

More draining. Good starch and protein in this meat.

Twist, knead some more and taste. Done. Phew. Now to dry.

Thank goodness for modern technology. dehydrate this meal at about 135 until dry. Put into a glass, plastic container or ziplock bag. store in the freezer for longest shelf life.

I put it in a ziplock, but moved it into a glass jar and put it back into the freezer.

Use 1/4 cup in place of 1/4 cup flour in any baked goods and or cookies. Add to soups/stews. Their are many recipes online.

My second batch I did not grind into meal and I tried a boil method. Taste your nut, so you know your starting bitterness. Have your nuts in a large pot with water covering, well above nuts. (Note that when you cover a pot with a lid, boiling accurs more quickly and uses less energy.) Bring to a boil and then drain into a metal mesh strainer. I only have a medium size metal mesh strainer, so I would drain more carefully in a clean sink into the mesh strainer. Only having a few nuts fill the strainer. Put the nuts back into pot, take out any skin that clumps and or floats as you boil. Fill with warm/hot water as stated before. Boil again. Remember to take your time. This process can and may takes a few days with modern everyday life, kids, and in keeping our stress level to a minimum.

I boiled and drained 5 times before I needed to go someplace.  I tasted a nut and decided more boils were needed. So, to keep the nuts fresh, I added water and ice to the pot.( note: I read online to not let the nut get cold during the boil process. That it binds the tannins to the nut more and takes out healthy oil from the nut. My bad now I know.) Covered it and went to do my errands. Came back and did five more boils and drains. Tasted a nut and decided the taste was acceptable. Dried the nuts whole and in halves/bits in dehydrator at 135 until dry. Put them into a glass jar and place into the freezer for fresh keeping.

Try it. It is great survival knowledge. It is good to experience some of how people survived long ago. Many poor American settlers learned to eat acorns in order to extend their food.