Friday, April 18, 2014

homemade vegetable stock...

This is my number one go-to for veggie stock making. It is SUCH a money saver AND makes my family stock that is 100% good for you, natural, and that I know the ingredients of. In the Main house, we go through stock pretty quickly. Whether it's used in soups or chilis or used to cook rice, quinoa or couscous, we use it throughout the week, every week.

Read the labels of those store-bought stocks, friends. You'll be surprised. I recently bought an organic and free range brand named chicken stock and mistakingly brought it home without first checking the label. Everything was great until I read, "natural chicken flavorings". Ummm, what? What does that mean? It said, "chicken" as well... so I know that's not what they meant. Blarg.

Making this is super simple: all I do is keep a gallon sized ziplock freezer bag in my freezer and place any and all washed vegetable and fresh herb trimmings into it while making dinners for a few weeks. This literally only takes a week or two of saving the trimmings. Carrot tops and peels, onion and garlic skins, parsley and cilantro stems, bell pepper insides, sweet potato ends, etc...if it's "trash", it goes into my freezer bag. Then, after a few weeks my bag is packed full! Stock time!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

'come thou fount' free desktop background...

Dear friend,

Gosh sometimes I really just need to hear some old school hymns, know what I mean? Not that there is anything wrong with contemporary worship music (I love me some All Sons and Daughters and Hillsong!) but there have been times lately where my soul just needs to go back to the basics and worship with some of the more beautiful words I've personally ever sang along to.

There's a band you've probably already heard me mention, Page CXVI. Sheesh friends...these guys rock. They've committed themselves to making hymns more accessible and known again to our younger generations. Amazing right? They've got albums upon albums of all the older hymns you may totally remember, but sung in a more modern, almost folk-like way. I just love it. Like, can't get enough of it. 

Best part? These hymns that I used to sing in grade school and had forgotten about, are now what I wake up singing most mornings! Pretty much the best way to wake up. Ever.

Lord, you have searched me and known me!
 You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar.
 You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways.
 Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O Lordyou know it altogether.
 You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me.
 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it.

Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there! If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me. If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,” even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.


For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.


How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I would count them, they are more than the sand. I awake, and I am still with you.

Oh that you would slay the wicked, O God! men of blood, depart from me! 
 They speak against you with malicious intent; your enemies take your name in vain. Do I not hate those who hate you, O LordAnd do I not loathe those who rise up against you?
 I hate them with complete hatred; I count them my enemies.

Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!

- Psalm 139

Praying this hymn and this scripture is a total breath of fresh air for you today. If you'd like is as a computer, iPad, or cell phone background, grab one of those sizes below. 

  1. Large (2048 x 1365)
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  5. Blog Sidebar (320 x 213)

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

nutella chip ice milk...

Ice milk? What in the world is ice milk

To put things simply, it's a waaaaaaaay lower fat version of ice cream. Traditionally made with (you guessed it) milk, it was not only lower in fat, but lower in price as well, as it used less costly ingredients. i.e- no cream and no eggs. 

This totally intrigued me, so I challenged myself to make some! I mean, I had already made this coconut eggless ice cream and totally dug it, so I figured this couldn't be far from that process. Plus, I had never personally had ice milk so I wanted to know what it was all about. But you know me, I can't leave well enough alone; I knew from the start I wanted a little bit more of a creaminess, so my version uses half and half instead of milk. And then I added Nutella because...Nutella. So honestly, this version with all of my changes, probably isn't too far from ice cream in the fat content, haha. Oh well.

Friday, April 11, 2014

brown sugar raspberry jam...

Happy Friday friends! Did you guys all see the kitchen challenge announcement, a few Fridays ago? Elah Tree and I are just so incredibly excited for this little thing! We're both really hoping it becomes a fun way for us all to break out of our cooking comfort zones and experiment these next few months! Don't forget, April's ingredient is LIMES. Can't wait to start cooking (or baking) with those babies!

Also, if you haven't already, make sure to head on over to this post and grab your badge for your blog! Let the world know you're taking a part in it! Happy cooking :)

Now for this little beauty! skjfnvkrnvrgbeirugni you guys! Eeeeeep! So excited to share with you all this EASY jam recipe!