Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Keepin' Warm

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Knitting? Yes, I worked on my long term projects, the Shawlette and Pelerine. Boring pictures, but great comfort knitting.

It's getting chilly here. Fourty-four right now at 5:30 am. Sooooo, wanna win a quilt? Three are being given away at Old Red Barn.
See yesterday's post for part one of this article. I really don't think her main topic was about security.

Keeping the "We" in "Yes, We Can!"

In response to my thought that many of us were knitting socks from stash rather than buying more yarn, one woman in that knitting group suggested we not forget our LYS, "after all they need to eat, too!"

My immediate response was, "My family eats before I support someone else's family." I didn't post that as I was sure it would offend someone. However several other people did respond to it, and felt pretty much the same way I did. It's hard in this economic crisis to personally know the people in the businesses you can no longer support in the way you used to. And knowing that if you don't, there is a good chance, when a little extra money comes along, the business might not be there when you arrive.

Someone else posted about a small local chain of craft/fabric stores that is closing, leaving only the big box craft stores. The economy is affecting us. And we have to make choices, some of which are really difficult. I don't have any answers for you...but there are many of us going through the same thing. Times are tough and will be so for awhile.

Knitting doesn't have to be an expensive hobby. I can't help but wonder if all those anti-acrylic knitters might have to make some choices in the coming months that they've sworn they'd never make. Maybe not, if they have been building their stash for a long time. Isn't that the lesson Joseph taught the Pharaoh? Store in times of plenty so you can eat, or knit, it times of famine. I have a stash...most of it's acrylic!

Do you bake bread? It's a great way to save in several ways. Did you know bread dough can be refrigerated for up to several days? So...make some dough tonight before going to bed. In the morning, turn on the oven (which will take the chill out of the house without turning on the heater), prepare some bread dough and serve fresh bread with jam for breakfast. Or add brown sugar, cinnamon, and nuts to the butter that's brushed on the rolls. Yummy. It'll cost you much less than a run to the donut store with the added benefit of warming up the house without using the heater. Not to mention it'll warm you up with some home made cocoa, coffee or tea.

It really doesn't cost very much to make bread and you'll have an idea of what's in it rather than the list of ingredients on the commercially made breads. Like knitting, bread baking is an easy skill to learn...doesn't cost much to experiment with, and wow! can you ever taste the difference! Use a bread machine if you have one. Start the bread at night and wake up to fresh bread. Or start it in the morning and have fresh bread for dinner.

My family favorite is Fry Bread. My grandmother used to make this whenever she came to visit. It, along with home made Bean Soup, is the best comfort food I know of! (Your mileage may vary.) Once you've made it a couple times, you'll start experimenting with it. We use home made turkey, chicken or beef broth, add corn in addition to or instead of carrots or celery. Just throw it all in the crock pot and it'll be done by morning or when you get home.

Now for the Fry Bread. Make your favorite Bread recipe. Let it rise once. Heat up some oil for deep frying. Punch down the bread and squeeze off a piece the size of a ping pong ball. Flatten out in your hand, pull and stretching. Punch a couple three holes in it. Slide into the hot oil and let it float and cook for a couple minutes. Using tongs, flip it over and let it cook again. Drain on paper towels. You can fry two or three pieces at a time depending on how big your deep fryer is. I always put a plate in the oven with it set as low as possible. The fry bread goes in there to stay warm till it's all fried up. Then the warm bread with bean soup on the table. For desert, fry bread with honey, powdered sugar or jam.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, foods that are cooked for long periods of time, like soups and stews, not only warm you up with their temperature, but the long cooking time energetically makes them warmer. Old fashioned oatmeal or other cooked grains in the morning keep you warmer longer. Instant stuff just doesn't do the trick. Not only is it less expensive to make it from scratch, it serves you better in the long run.

Someone mentioned on a blog recently that it's time for the "Little House on the Prairie" books to become our survival guide. Not far from being wrong. The food that's prepared from scratch is less expensive and better for you equating in saving money in the food budget as well as medical budget. BTW, if you haven't read the Little House books, take the time. I read them for the first time as an adult and was amazed at how much fun they were to read as well as how much I learned from them.

1 comment:

  1. Making bread by hand is good for what ails a person, not to mention the good bread. Unless a person has troublesome wrists kneading bread is very theraputic. I highly recommend it.


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