She watches over the ways of her household,
And does not eat the bread of idleness.

Proverbs 31:27

Monday, October 12, 2015

Intermittent Fasting by

Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting is not a form of starvation but a way for you to time your meals to maximize your body's ability to burn fat. Embed this infographic on your site to serve as a guide for you to create a healthy eating plan, and reap the many benefits of fasting done the right way. Use the embed code to share it on your website or visit our infographic page for the high-res version.
<img src="" alt="Intermittent Fasting" border="0" style="max-width:100%; min-width:300px; margin: 0 auto 20px auto; display:block;"><p style="max-width:800px; min-width:300px; margin:0 auto; text-align:center;">"<a href="">Intermittent fasting</a>" is not a form of starvation but a way for you to time your meals to maximize your body's ability to burn fat. Embed this infographic on your site to serve as a guide for you to create a healthy eating plan, and reap the many benefits of fasting done the right way. Visit our infographic page for the high-res version.</p>

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

How I Bake Bread

Most of us love bread.

Some of us way too much.

Either way we like to keep bread in the house.

Bread can be purchased at the store.
Our family loves to read ingredient lists.
Sometimes the list on a loaf of bread is so long and so full of complicated words that we get bored long before the halfway point and decide we can't follow through on that so we buy flour and yeast and take that home instead.

The point is that we don't put unidentified ingredients into our mouths, no matter who says it's safe.

We don't believe them.  We just don't.

We still love bread though so we go home and I bake bread.

I bake three loaves at a time.
I used to bake six at a time but that was back when all the kids lived at home and they ate a lot of bread.  Back then I used a large bowl, a wooden spoon, and my hands.  Today I use a professional type of mixer which is strong enough to knead three loaves of bread for me.

The advantages to baking your own bread is that the house smells amazing and you get to eat it fresh and warm with good butter and homemade jam.

After it cools, I slice, bag and freeze it.
We remove only the slices we need at a time from the freezer.
Here is how it goes, with plenty of pictures.

First the Ingredients:

-White Flour - I use organic and not bread flour.  Bread flour has ingredients.  It is not simply wheat.
-Whole wheat flour
-yeast - I use active dry yeast.  You can get packets or jar.  I buy the jar.
-butter - I use real butter
-salt - I use sea salt
-sugar - I use sucanat
-molasses, black strap molasses, you can use honey or sugar etc but I find that black strap molasses makes a softer bread.
-quick cooking oats

In the mixing bowl put 1/4 cup butter,
1 Tablespoon of sea salt,
1/4 cup black strap molasses,
1 cup of quick cooking oats.
At this point you could add extras like sunflower seeds, soaked wheat berries,
sesame seeds, wheat germ and/or bran, etc.
Pour 2 cups of boiling water on it and leave it to sit until the butter is melted and oats soaked.


In a small bowl place 1 Tablespoon of yeast and cover with a scant teaspoon of sugar.  I use sucanat which looks a bit like yeast.

Measure 1/2 cup of warm water.  Between 110° and 115° F is the best temperature for yeast.  Too hot and you will kill it.  Too cold and you won't wake it up.  I don't use a thermometer any more because I've sort of gotten the feel for it.  If it's too hot for your baby finger then it's too hot for yeast.

Pour the warm water over the yeast and sugar to cover.  This is to soften and activate the yeast.

Set the timer for 10 minutes.

When the timer is done, add 1 1/2 cups of cold water to the mixing bowl and stir.

Scrape the yeast mixture into the mixing bowl as well.

Measure 3 cups of whole wheat flour into the mixing bowl.

Mix it all together with a whisk.  Mix it really well.

It should look something like this.  Lots of great air bubbles.

Place the mixing bowl on the mixer and use the dough hook.
Add 1 cup of whole wheat flour and 2 cups of white.

Using the stir setting... the flour in until it looks like....


Add 3 more cups of white flour, one at a time.

Add one more cup of white flour a little at a time
for a total of 10 cups or more.

Give it a touch test.
If it is not sticky when you poke it and there is not much left on the sides of the bowl.

Dump it out onto the counter and scrape the bowl.

The dough will still need a bit of kneading.
Here is a video of a short kneading time.

Test it at the end of kneading.
Dough should feel slightly sweaty but not wet.
Cool and clammy.
Poke it with your finger.
It should have a good spring to it.

Grease the bowl with a little oil, preferably a good oil.
No need to wash the bowl first.

Put the dough upside down in the bowl and turn it around to coat it in oil.

Turn the dough over so the oiled side is up.

Tear off a piece of wax paper.
I use wax because it allows the dough to breathe.
It is really important to get a lot of air into the dough.
I feel that plastic would not allow as much air flow.
I also would not want the plastic to react with the live yeast in the dough.
 That's why I use wax paper.

Cover the dough generously.

Now drape a clean towel over the bowl and set it in a warm draft free place.
I leave mine on the counter and it is just fine.

Leave it alone for 1 1/2 hours.

It gets really big.  Sometimes even bigger than this.

Now you have to take the cover off and push it down.
Turn it around and gently squeeze out most of the air.

Put it back in the bowl and replace the wax paper.

Cover it with it's towel again.

Let it rest for 20 minutes.


Get three loaf pans ready.

Butter them generously.

The dough doesn't get as big the second time and that's ok.

Tip it out onto the counter.

Make it into a nice rectangle.

Cut it into 3 pieces.

They may not be exactly equal.

So you can weigh them if you want to.
They should be about 1 3/4 lb each.

Take each piece and flatten it gently.

Roll it tightly.
If you let it be too loose it may unfold or get unusual air spaces in the finished loaf.

Seal the bottom.

And seal the ends.
I don't usually turn it over to look at it.
I only did that so you could see.

Place the loaves in the buttered pans.

You can score the tops if you want to.
You could roll them in seeds, sesame or sunflower or use oats.
You can leave them plain.

Cover them with the towel.

Turn the timer on for 45 minutes.

They are rising nicely.

Turn the oven on to 375°F.
Let the loaves rise for 15 more minutes.
(1 hour total)

After rising for an hour put them into the oven and...

bake for 30 minutes.

Turn them immediately out onto a rack and lay them sideways.
After they cool a bit turn them to their other side.

When they are mostly cooled cut a few slices and spread with real sweet butter.