The Frugal Witch

June 19, 2008

Meet the Goats and New Chickens

Filed under: chickens, farm, Food, frugal living, goat milk, goats, no gmo, organic, organic livestock — Tags: , , , , , , — Womon in the Woods @ 3:55 pm

Pippen-Alpine Billy-rather bashful

Brandon-Boer Billy

Tulip-Alpine Nanny

White Legs-Alpine Nanny-She doesn’t have white legs

Fresh goat milk

Rob milking on the stanchion he built from just a peek at a picture in an old book. I think he did a fantastic job!

Black Jap Roosters- I have never heard of  this breed. Anyone have a link on any info?

A random bantam breed. The gal I got them from couldn’t remember the name of the breed but they are pure bred. Any ideas? I am going to do a search tonight.

Ant these three fellas get the ax tonight.

Off to buy freezer paper. As soon as I get videos loaded I’ll post those too!

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May 31, 2008

The Raised Beds

Here are the promised photos. You’ll have to visit my flickr to see the notes on the photo of the entire spread of the yard garden.

More photos in a couple days of bunnies, and goats and progress on the goat fencing that is getting finished tomorrow since storms rolled through today.

May 29, 2008

Chocolate Cream Cheese Cupcakes

Filed under: Blogroll, D.I.Y., Food, home life, kitchen, video blog — Tags: , , , , , , — Womon in the Woods @ 5:02 pm

I had been watching this week’s installment of Decor it Yourself, a Threadbanger series (links shall be up…D.I.Y. is frugal, too!!!) and I came across this great blog called How About Orange. I saw and immediately knew I needed to make this cupcake recipe. I listed it below but I encourage you to check out the rest of How About Orange for other great recipes and crafty things and just plain old pretty and joy. So behold, a video of the making of these beautious cupcakes. Rob helped me tape, and you’ll see his other “contribution” as well. If you make these, let me know how you enjoyed them and if there are any changes you made to the recipe. I’ll link you in the spirit of info sharing….and who doesn’t like chocolate? OH! I should mention, some how I made 21 cupcakes for a recipe that called an 18 yeild….oh well….too bad, more cupcakes.


Filling:
1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
1/3 c. sugar
1 egg
1/8 tsp. salt
1 c. chocolate chips
1 c. peanut butter chips (or just use more chocolate if you want)

Cupcakes:
1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. sugar
1/4 c. baking cocoa
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. water
1/3 c. vegetable oil
1 Tbs. white vinegar
1 tsp. vanilla

In a bowl, beat cream cheese. Add sugar, egg, salt. Mix well. Fold in chips. Set aside. For cupcakes, combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. Add water, oil, vinegar, and vanilla. Mix well. Fill paper-lined muffin cups half full with batter. Top each with 2 Tbs. of cream cheese mixture. Bake at 350º for 25-30 minutes. Cool 10 minutes and remove from pan. Makes 18.

AAAAAAAAND Photos…

Just prior to going into the oven…

Mid-bake….told you I’m impatient!

So pretty…can’t hardly stand the waiting…

Can I PLEEEEEEEEEEZE have one?

Oh my Goddess, yum!!

You have to try these!

May 20, 2008

Backyard Bounty

There is more food in your backyard-even if you don’t plant a garden, and provided you have herbicide and pesticided the crap out of your environment-than you may realize. In the three years that this has been our home, I have successfully identified over 50 edibles growing in the forest and grassy spaces-free of chemicals, nurtured by Mother Nature Herself.

In the video in the last post I mentioned these things: Dandelions, Sorrel, Nettle, New Jersey Tea (Buckthorn) and Violets. Here are some links to some great sites offering info on the crafting, foraging and eating of the delish bounty the EARTH provides free of charge! How is that for frugal living?

The University of Minnesota

Abundantly Wild

Do It Green

Edible Plants

Those are just a couple of sites. If you did a Google search, I am sure that you can come up with any number of sites, and you can cater the search to your state or region of the country. In the next couple of weeks, the fiddle head ferns shall appear and boy oh boy are they going to be tasty!

Eat your weeds!

A short video on a few nearby wild edibles. Next post I’ll have a few recipes and some great wild harvest sites.

May 6, 2008

Raised Beds

Filed under: farm, Food, garden, organic — Tags: , , , — Womon in the Woods @ 5:25 pm

Rob is gung-ho over raised beds. I had put in mounds last year and they worked nicely, but I am on board with Rob on the raised beds. Opportunity for deeper beds, stronger and longer roots and better food. Here is the video I took today of Rob getting some of the beds in:

The soil temp is about 8 degrees less than the needed 60 degrees. By next week, maybe sooner after laying black plastic down, planting outside shall commence! good thing too because our tomato transplants from Seed Savers should be here tomorrow.

It’s going to be busy here in the next few days. I am still recovering from a mild concussion this past Saturday, so I am not much help right now, but I do what I can. Off to go make spaghetti. Have frugal fun tonight!

May 5, 2008

Frugal, Fast, Organic Fare

Filed under: CSA, Food, frugal living, home life, Homekeeping, organic — Tags: , , , , — Womon in the Woods @ 8:08 pm

I try my best to prepare food here that is good for us all, organic or most components organic and best of all fast to prepare. There isn’t a lot of time here for putzing around in the kitchen, not when there are 2 small children, animals, a husband a garden, sewing, crafting, laundry powder to mix, candles and soap to make, etc.

Rob and I are members of 2 vital elements to our household food sources. There is an organic CSA up in walker that thankfully delivers by us each week for $25. Granted right now the fare isn’t local but soon enough there shall be local food to be had in addition to the food grown in our gardens.

The other source is a buying club affiliated with a natural and organic foods distributor. Our foods are purchased in bulk at an incredible savings. For example, here is the list of one of our last three orders through the buying club:

2229 Ambassador Hairbrushes® Hair Brush oval shape nat bris
FOR REGULAR TO THIN HAIR
1/1brush 1 Case 0.89 14.57
6580 Ambrosia Milk Chocolate Chips 1/5# 1 Case 17.63
14068 Amy’s Kitchen Breakfast Burrito ND 12/6oz 6 Eaches 15.78
14740 Amy’s Kitchen Breakfast Patties 12/8oz 3 Eaches 13.86
14768 Amy’s Kitchen Spinach Pizza Snacks 12/6oz 3 Eaches 11.31
2250 Amy’s Kitchen Strawberry Toaster Pops 12/11.6oz 3 Eaches 10.80
14760 Amy’s Kitchen Vegetable Lasagna 12/9.5oz 3 Eaches 13.86
2193 Amy’s Kitchen Vegetable Pot Pie Organic 12/7.5oz 9 Eaches 25.02
13857 Annie’s Homegrown Arthur Loops Tomat & Chese OG 12/15oz can 1 Case 23.66
4925 Annie’s Homegrown Cheddar Bunnies Baked Crackers
made with Organic flour
12/7.5oz 1 Case 4.43 27.22
13888 Annie’s Homegrown Chocolate Bunnie Grahams
made with organic wheat flour
12/7.5oz 1 Case 4.43 27.22
13818 Annie’s Homegrown Mac & Cheese, Creamy Deluxe 12/12oz Temporarily out of stock
13859 Annie’s Homegrown P’sghetti loops Soy Meat Balls 12/15oz can 1 Case 23.66
18110 Annie’s Naturals® Ketchup, Organic Squeeze GF 12/24oz 3 Eaches 9.00
5688 Bob’s Red Mill Baking Powder 4/16oz 1 Case 11.04
5696 Bob’s Red Mill Brown Rice Flour SG GF 4/24oz Temporarily out of stock
5661 Bob’s Red Mill Couscous Golden 4/24oz 2 Cases 24.54
5945 Bob’s Red Mill Flax Seed Meal 4/32oz Temporarily out of stock
5984 Bob’s Red Mill Oatmeal Scottish 4/20oz Temporarily out of stock
10173 Cascadian Farm Orange Juice Concentrate OG 12/12oz 1 Case 38.76
4419 Coconut Coconut Med Shred Unsul 1/5# 1 Case 9.93
3401 Eastwind Almond Butter Smooth NS 12/16oz 1 Each 8.47
12822 Eastwind Peanut Butter Smooth NS OG 6/5# 1 Each 17.68
5050 Great River Unbl Wheat Flour OG 1/50# 1 Case 42.43
7104 Health Valley Vegetable Broth FF Aseptic 12/32oz 1 Case 36.84
5837 Lundberg White Basmati OG 1/25# 1 Case 44.22
17892 Midwest Northern Trail Mix Raw NS 1/5# 1 Case 19.38
17101 Muir Glen Chnky Tom w/Herb Pasta SauceOG 12/26oz 9 Eaches 30.89
19421 Muir Glen Classic Minestrone OG Soup 12/19oz 6 Eaches 18.24
5362 Natural Value Green Lentils OG 1/5# 3 Cases 23.58
12946 Natures Bakery Cooperative™ Six Grain Granola 10/1# 4 Eaches 15.60
13039 New Century Farms Brown Eggs lrg OG1 Grade A 8/12ct Temporarily out of stock
10002 Organic Valley Butter No Salt Organic 15/1# 3 Eaches 20.07
7745 Organic Valley Half & Half Ultra Past OG 12/32oz 1 Each 0.42 3.76
18025 Peace Coffee French Roast Whole Bean 1/1# 2 Cases 20.44
4786 Raisins Raisins Golden Fancy 5# 1 Case 12.71
19071 Smile Brite Double Tip Replaceable Head X Soft Natul 1/1 brush 2 Cases 0.34 5.58
19072 Smile Brite Double Tip T-Brush Head Refil X Soft Natr 1/3 heads 2 Cases 0.39 6.35
1411 Westby Cottage Cheese 2% rBGH Free 12/24oz 2 Eaches 8.94
15028 White Wave Tofu, Extra Firm Style 6/12oz 3 Eaches 6.12
4355 Wholesome Sweeteners Cane Sugar Organic K GF 1/25# Temporarily out of stock
Invoice Summary
Product Total Shipping Charges Sales Taxes Freight Equity Club Charges Total Invoice
657.54 0.00 1.62 0.00 0.00 0.00 659.16

The bulk purchase and minimal tax (Minnesota has no tax on foodstuffs) helps a frugal family out! This is a number of months of food on this order! Granted some of it is convenience food, but it’s organic and healthier than the convenience food in a conventional form. I go to the grocery store for fresh things only, and generally those items mean things like milk and yogurt even though I an get it through the buying club. I have more of a savings at the grocery store considering the rate my family drinks milk (not much for cow milk as the girls are soy babies.)

One more outlet Rob and I are looking into is over at my favorite place on the net, MaryJanes Farm. She has this most delicious product called Budget Mix. Think of Bisquick but good for you. It can be purchased in bulk quantities and is perfect for the nights I don’t *really* have the time to make something.

Tonight’s meal was made using the Bakeover recipe. I made the Bakeover part more like biscuits because the dish I made was a little bigger, I really should have doubled the recipe for the Bakeover crust.

Here is what I did:

cooked up some lean ground beef (I am normally a veg. and cook for the family veg. but I’m pregnant and I crave red meat…strange, I know…) then chopped up three of our potatos from our CSA share this week along with some garlic from a share a couple of weeks ago, an onion and some cream of broccoli soup. I made the biscuits, put them on top and baked according to the Bakeover directions. I figure this dish- which will be another meal tomorrow- cost about $5-6 to make total and took about 35 minutes to make. FRUGAL! CHEAP! FAST! NUTRITIOUS! EASY! ORGANIC!

I added to the meal a nice Ceasar salad using all organic produce gotten in our CSA share. The salad cost more than the meat dish! But, it too shall feed us again tomorrow.

A food photographer I am not, but these look pretty tasty don’t they!?

This morning I made sticky buns using the Budget Mix and there are still some left for breakfast tomorrow. There are about a billion and one things one can make using this great item so I think I’m surely going to order it in bulk. They carry trial sizes too, for those of you not sold just yet. There is also a special edition of Mary Jane’s magazine that focuses JUST on recipes using the Budget Mix and the Chillover Powder (gelatin that’s not gelatin!!) It’s definitely worth checking out if you are in a similar boat as we are here.

Dinner was satisfying, great tasting and good for us all tonight and I spent almost no time or effort to make it that way.

Ta ta till next time!

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