Homestead Hack: Shorter Cooking Times In Slow Cooker

by Tammy Taylor~

We all love our slow cookers, right?  I mean, what’s not to love??!  You plunk ingredients into the vessel and walk away.  The slow cooker does all the work!  You only have to walk in tired from a day at work and smell the delicious aroma of supper ready & waiting to serve!  Yeah, we love our slow cookers here at the Homestead, and we use them a lot.  Oftentimes for preparing our supper.  Sometimes I use it for overnight cooking when making Homemade Applesauce or simmering bones for a delicious Homemade Broth.   I know a slow cooker is more energy efficient than using the oven or even the stove top in many cases.   But I’ve found a way to speed along the cooking times while keeping it on set to an energy-sipping ‘Low’.  Check out today’s Homestead Hack.

Would you like your slow cooker to cook your food a little faster on 'Low' and save a little energy too? Check out this Homestead Hack! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Use WhatCha Got: Repurposing To Simplify Kitchen tasks

by Tammy Taylor~

My baby sis knows that I reuse various containers.  So she’s always checking with me before she sends something to the recycling bin. The other day she held up an empty container of Parmesan cheese (like you sprinkle on pizza) and asked if I’d like it.   RancherMan HATES that stuff so I’m never able to buy it.  So I enthusiastically accepted her offer.  She was a bit surprised at my excitement.  But when I told her what I was gonna do with it…

When my sis offered an empty Parmesan cheese container for me to repurpose I was excited. See how it simplifies my life in the kitchen. #TaylorMadeHomestead

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5 Frugal Things To Save Money This Week: Crappy Fridge Edition!

by Tammy Taylor~

RancherMan & I purchased all Frigidaire appliances when we outfitted our ranch kitchen.  The constant repairs on our Frigidaire microwave have been frustrating.  But more frustrating still is our crappy Frigidaire side-by-side refrigerator.  It’s by far the loudest appliance in our home with visitors stopping to listen and asking “Is that your fridge??!” It required repair while it was still under its limited warranty, then after the warranty we’ve had to repair it several times.  The condenser fan went out, the water line developed a pinhole leak and needed repair,  the ice maker died, the water line to the dispenser came loose and made a flooding mess.  But this time it’s a more expensive fix, apparently the main circuit control board is shot.  This fridge lasted only 7 years y’all, and that was with many, MANY repairs.  Frigidaire? Never again for us!

It was an expensive week for sure but we were able to find many ways to save a little cash. So c’mon down, let’s play the Crappy Fridge Edition of “5 Frugal Things to Save Money This Week”!

5 Frugal Things to Save Money This Week - Crappy Refrigerator Edition! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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When Unexpected Company Comes…

by Tammy Taylor~

 

I’ve mentioned before that RancherMan & I keep a ‘tidy’ house. The bed is made every morning, the supper dishes always cleaned, surfaces relatively cleared of clutter, etc.  So it’s baffling to me why I go into a break-neck panic when RancherMan casually announces the impending arrival of an unexpected visitor. I look with panic at the accumulations of projects I have going on in the kitchen – making bread at the same time I’m dehydrating tomato leather, dealing with produce from the garden, and fermenting a batch of Haymaker’s Punch.

I also notice every little piece of grass on the wood floors that our mini-Schnauzer Bailey has drug in. I’m suddenly painfully aware of the thick dust that comes from living off a dirt road. And of course the stay-at-home outfit I slipped on to just deal with cows/chickens/chores is certainly not acceptable for company!

Do you feel panic when unexpected company shows? I polled our followers to see if they felt the same. Their responses were hilarious! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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I Am So Thankful!

by Tammy Taylor~

I am so thankful... Thank you, Lord for my many blessings! #TaylorMadeHomestead

I have way too many blessings to count, but I’m so thankful for them all.  Food to nourish me, a bed for rest and the love of family to warm my heart.  I count YOU, my dear friends, as a blessing as well.

Happy Thanksgiving, y’all!

~TMH~

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Generosity Shouldn’t Be Judgmental – Just Show LOVE!

by Tammy Taylor~

It’s easy to look down at others when your life is going well – your career is holding steady, children are healthy and happy, marriage is strong and you have no sudden unexpected medical conditions to plunge you into that place where no one wants to land.  But what if that weren’t the case?? Think about these real-life circumstances for just a moment: What if your spouse left you or died?  What if your child developed a serious and very expensive medical condition?  What if you were laid off from your posh career without warning?  Don’t kid yourself, these things can happen to any of us.

We're all just one terrible situation away from being on the receiving end of others generosity. Don't judge a book by its cover! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Mother Earth News Post – Cottage Cheese From Soured Milk

by Tammy Taylor~

RancherMan & I have been burning the candle at both ends lately it seems.  We’ve had business commitments, familial commitments and community commitments.  Truth be told we’ve been running a LOT!  So half of my gallon of milk sat in the fridge & got a little too close to it’s use-by date and ended up lightly soured.  I didn’t throw it away – I made cottage cheese with it!  It was very quick & so easy.

Homogenized Milk vs Raw Milk

Now I must say there are some very strong opinions out there on whether or not soured pasteurized milk is the same as soured raw milk.  I’ve tried raw milk before but I don’t much care for it so I buy my milk.  I haven’t done massive research on all the nuances into safety vs purity of raw vs homogenized milk.  I think there are valid points on both sides.  But in this post I’m sharing what I’ve personally done.

No Arguments!

I’ve made this cottage cheese from lightly-soured commercially-purchased milk several times.  My experience is that my homemade cottage cheese is absolutely delicious and tastes no different to me than commercially-purchased cottage cheese.  I’m happy to share this easy procedure with you.  But I won’t get into a soured raw milk vs soured commercial milk discussion, m’kay?  We’re all friends here & you have the right to your opinion and to nourish your body as you like, just as we all do!  I’m just sharing my personal experience here.  So we’re all good??  Alrighty then – here’s my post shared recently with Mother Earth News!

Half a gallon of milk got too close to it's use-by date and was lightly soured. So I made cottage cheese with it. Very quick & so easy! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Making Low-Carb Veggie Noodles, ZOODLES!

by Tammy Taylor~

*Contains affiliate link

I’ve heard about it for years, using squash in the place of high-carb pasta noodles.   Some people eat spaghetti squash as a low-carb noodle substitute.  But I’ve found for us it’s best to eat spaghetti squash just as a fun-shaped squash.  To me the taste is nothing like pasta.  (I do have a delicious Cheesy Spaghetti-Squash dish we enjoy.)

Other people swear by making spiral-type noodles using fresh vegetables.  Supposedly it’s a more realistic way to enjoy a noodle-shaped vegetable in the place of pasta.  My garden produced so much zucchini I really wanted to give the spiral-noodle thingee a try.  I looked at all the various contraptions made to cut your squash into noodles and decided on the Veggetti.  Now this is NOT a sponsored post, they didn’t send me one to try and aren’t paying me a cent to write this.  Heck to them I’m just another customer.  But DANG y’all, I wanna share this with you!

Making ZOODLES! Veggetti got the highest recommendations from my FB followers. So I bought one to make low-carb noodles 'Zoodles'. See how I make 'em! #TaylorMadeHomestead

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Texas Heat Superstar: Growing Malabar Spinach

by Tammy Taylor~

*contains affiliate link

I love fresh spinach & I’m sure to plant it every year in my edible landscape garden.  It’s beautiful, leafy-green and makes a lovely border.  Oh, and you can EAT it!  What’s not to love??!  But in our part of NE Texas the window of opportunity in enjoying fresh spinach is short.  In no time our spinach bolts and becomes bitter.  But I’ve recently been introduced to a completely different kind of spinach.  One that grows vigorously in a vine.  In the heat! Malabar spinach!

Malabar Spinach - Texas Heat-Loving Superstar! Dark-green heart-shaped leaves that grow in a vine even in the Texas summer heat. Beauty, edibility and heat-loving staying power. #TaylorMadeHomestead

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