Wednesday, November 28, 2012

wordless wednesday

Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

wordless wednesday

Posted by Picasa

Thursday, November 15, 2012

diy thursday: freshen smelly towels

The other day I noticed our clean towels were smelling kinda funky after they had just been washed.  Our detergent and dryer sheets are fragrance free because of allergies, but our laundry doesn't usually smell bad after being washed.  I turned to Pinterest for a solution. I found a good link to better smelling towels that was very helpful. The process seemed a little tedious, but it isn't something you have to do often. I have had the towels in question for three years and am just now having an issue.
All the solution requires is baking soda and the trusted white vinegar I seem to rely on most of the time.  The process requires two wash cycles.  Both cycles require hot water so make sure your washing machine is set to the hottest water setting. Also, your towels have to be clean before you start the process. After reading a couple of blog posts regarding whether you can include detergent with one of the cycles, they all advised not to because the soap would cancel out the other ingredients. Whatever that means, I decided to follow the instructions.
Starting with clean towels, I first washed the towels in hot water with one cup of white vinegar. When that cycle was complete then I started a new cycle, this time with half a cup of baking soda. Once those two cylces were complete I dried the towels. And voila, the smell was gone.

What a great trick. This prolongs the life of the towels as well. The blog post about better smelling towels also indicated this process makes the towels more absorbent. I hadn't noticed my towels were less absorbent, but hey I am ok with making them even more absorbent.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

wordless wednesday

Posted by Picasa

Monday, November 12, 2012

milling mondays: danish rye bread (rugbrød)

this post first appeared on the grain mill wagon

If you ask a Dane to talk about traditional Danish food, he/she will for sure mention rugbrød (rye bread). When I ask Danes what they miss the most when they are not in Denmark they usually say rugbrød.  Rugbrød is a Danish food stable. I would venture to say that most Danes will eat rye bread for lunch every day.  As a Dane, I too love rugbrød with all of its wonderful toppings.  Freshly made rye bread from a Danish bakery is the best. So I thought I would make my own Danish rye bread using my new grain mill, the WonderMill.
The first time you make this bread it is more involved because you have to make the sourdough starter. After the first time you make it you can just set aside some of the dough and use it as a starter the next time.

Sourdough Starter (scroll down for rye bread recipe)
9 Tbsp water
4 Tbsp rye flour
5 Tbsp whole wheat flour
1 tsp honey
First grind your rye berries and wheat berries with your grain mill (I use my WonderMill).

Day 1
Mix 6 Tbsp water, 3 Tbsp rye flour, 3 Tbsp whole wheat flour, and 1 tsp honey together in a mason jar. Put the lid on the jar and leave it in a warm place.
Day 3
Add 3 Tbsp water, 1 Tbsp rye flour, and 2 Tbsp whole wheat flour to the jar with the sourdough mixture from day 1 and mix.  Put the lid back on and let it sit in a warm place for another 2-3 days until the sourdough starter is finished.  It is finished when the starter is bobbling and smells fermented.
Again, this sourdough starter recipe is not required after the first time.

Danish Rye Bread (Rugbrød)

Sourdough starter
500g whole wheat flour
1000g rye flour
3 Tbsp salt
300g rye berries
200g sunflower seeds
200g barley
150g ground flaxseed
150g steel cut oats
8 cups water
The advantage of using grams instead of cups is that when you measure your wheat/rye berries in grams it produces the exact amount of grams of flour you need. When you measure wheat/rye berries in cups then you will end up with more flour than needed. Either way will work though. Most food scales also measure in grams and make it easy to figure out if you don’t normally use grams.
This recipe yields 4 loaves of rye bread, but I usually halve the recipe and make 2 loaves at a time. This assumes a 8.5″x4.5″ loaf pan. The bread freezes well especially if you slice it before you freeze it.

Day 1
In a pot or bowl add 150g rye grains, 100g sunflower seeds, 100g barley, and 75g steel cut oats. Pour 2 cups of boiling water over the grain mixture. Cover the pot/bowl and let it sit for 24 hours.

Day 2
Dissolve the sourdough starter in 4 cups of lukewarm water. Then add 500g freshly ground whole wheat flour, 500g freshly ground rye flour, 75g freshly ground flaxseed and 3 Tbsp salt. Finally, add the grain mixture from day 1.  Mix it all together and let it sit covered for 24 hours. 
At the same time repeat day 1 in a separate bowl/pot to make a new grain mixture.

Day 3
Add the two mixtures from day 2 together. Then add 500g freshly ground rye flour and 75g freshly ground flaxseed.

IMPORTANT NOTE: From this mixture remove the amount of sourdough starter you began the recipe with and put it in a ziplock bag or a small container with a lid. Keep it in the fridge until the next time you make rye bread. This way you don’t have to make the sourdough starter from scratch again.
Spray your loaf pans with oil. Divide the dough into the pans. Cover them and let them rise for 3-4 hours. 

Preheat the oven to 395F and bake for 1.5 hours. Once they are done, remove them from the pans and let them cool on a rack.

And then you have super healthy Danish rye bread.
This may seem like a complicated and long process, but it doesn’t take as much time as it may seem especially after the first time of having to make the sourdough starter.  Day 1 and 2 of the rye bread recipe doesn’t take very long – you are only adding ingredients together. And day 3 takes as long as it would take you to bake other breads.  It is well worth the trouble to have yummy Danish rye bread as tasty and nutritious as from a Danish baker.
Top the rye bread with whatever topping you like. YUM.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

diy thursday: getting rid of underarm smell on clothes

Staying with the armpit theme from last week, here is a trick I learned a couple of years ago.  Now that I am married, this trick comes in especially handy;)
It is a super simple and easy trick that relies on  ... yep, you guessed it, white vinegar. All I do before I wash shirts is squirt the underarms of the shirts with white vinegar.  Then I wash them like normal in the washing machine and voila, no more sweat smell left on the shirt. 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

wordless wednesday

Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

grand canyon

Last weekend, friends from Washington came down to visit us. We had a great time hanging out and also took a day trip to the Grand Canyon. It was a gorgeous day - perfect for viewing one of the seven natural wonders of the world.
I thought I would throw this one in here of a random lady that we met ... we didn't ask her to take a picture of them:)

Monday, November 5, 2012

milling mondays: 100% whole wheat VEGAN pancakes

this post first appeared on the grain mill wagon


On a Saturday morning shortly after I received my WonderMill, I decided to make pancakes. Michael and I enjoy making pancakes from time to time on a lazy morning.  I was excited about making a more healthy and vegan version of our pancake recipe. It was super easy.
100% Whole Wheat Vegan Pancakes
print-email-text recipe
1  1/2 cup whole wheat flour ( 1 cup hard white wheat berries)
1 Tbsp baking powder
1  1/2 Tbsp raw blue agave (or 3 Tbsp brown sugar for a sweeter taste)
2 Tbsp ground flaxseed mixed with 6 Tbsp water
3 Tbsp apple sauce
1  1/2 cup vanilla almond milk
This recipe yields about 10 pancakes

Grind about 1 cup of hard white wheat berries to make 1  1/2 cup whole wheat flour. I of course use my WonderMill.
Grind 2 Tbsp flaxseeds. Mix the ground flaxseeds with 6 Tbsp water. This is a great egg substitute. Let the mixture sit for a minute and it becomes an egglike consistency.
Mix all the ingredients together adding the flaxseed mixture last. 

Heat up the pan and scoop the pancake batter onto the pan turning half way through. Repeat until all of the batter has been used up.

These pancakes are yummy. To make them even better you can of course add blueberries or chocolate chips to the batter. Enjoy!
Posted by Picasa

Friday, November 2, 2012

an afternoon with the family

A couple of weeks ago when we were in Tacoma for a conference, Michael's family came down for the afternoon to hang out with us. So fun.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

diy thursday: getting rid of armpit stains


antiperspirant deodorant + white shirt = yellow pit stains = not cool
There is nothing like ugly yellow armpit stains to help ruin a white shirt.  I know Oxi Clean is supposed to get clothes super white if you just soak them in it or add it to your laundry. It always works for my mom, but I haven't had the greatest luck. A couple of years ago I experimented with it and did find a solution to the yellow pit problem!
I mix a VERY concentrated combination of warm water and Oxi Clean and put it directly on the yellow pit stains. I let it sit for at least an hour, preferably longer.  Then I toss the white shirts in the laundry as normal. And voila, the stains are gone!
I have tried many different tricks on how to get rid of yellow armpit stains, but this is the only thing I have found that truly works.

Another trick:  If you have colored shirts with pits that have white residue from deodorant that doesn't come off in the wash, then soaking them in a tub of warm water with Oxi Clean before washing them does help get rid of the residue. 
Posted by Picasa