Culturing in a Small Town

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Living near a city means I have the ability to pop in to any number of natural food stores. Within 20 minutes of my house I have Trader Joes, Whole Foods, 2 very large Asian markets, 2 large natural grocery stores and a handful of smaller natural food stores. I also have two farmer’s markets that continue all year and countless summer farmers markets. Obviously, obtaining a variety of organic, or even biodynamic, whole foods is no trouble.  Small towns on the other hand can be an entirely different story…. 

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Sarah

Sarah

I live in Oregon with my 4 kids. I hop between my kitchen and sewing room. As the daughter of a ranch-girl turned County Extension Agent, I really believe that with enough ingenuity and know-how, anything can be made. I try to keep some cultured vegetables and condiments on hand, as well as a robust supply of yogurt. What really excites me though is finding old ways of culturing foods from around the world and making it work in my life. “I wonder” is a phrase I utter a lot, and can make my kids nervous! I love to learn and share what I’ve discovered.

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A Closer Look: Buttermilk Starter

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“When I finally understood that the stuff on the supermarket shelves wasn’t real buttermilk, I started looking for an alternative. I found it! I’ve been making a fresh batch of buttermilk weekly for about 8 months now….Well worth the price, and incredibly easy to make.” ~Melanie

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Shannon

Shannon is a mama to four small children, homesteader, freelance writer, and picture-taker. She lives with her husband on their off-grid homestead where they make and eat kefir, kombucha, sourdough, and fermented vegetables.

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Cultured Cream Puffs: Gluten-Free

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I was diagnosed with celiac four years ago and pretty much stopped baking. I was nervous about all the different flours and gums, and intimidated by just about everything except almond flour pancakes and coconut flour muffins. Recently, however, I’ve been dipping a toe into desserts, because sometimes I REALLY miss pastries.

I decided to make these gluten free cream puffs the other day after catching a few minutes of a cooking show on TV. The woman was making pate a choux, which is a pastry dough containing only flour, eggs, butter, and water. It’s super simple, and after watching it I wondered how hard it could possibly be to make with rice flour. As it turns out, it’s not hard at all, because choux (which means cabbage, if I recall high school French correctly) relies only on steam to make it poufy and light, NOT gluten.

I made a large batch of these for my brood, using the following ingredients…

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Stacie

Stacie

Stacie has been making kefir, kombucha, yogurt, sauerkraut and cheese for eight years. She lives with her husband, four children, parents and livestock on a small farm in Oregon. Stacie's goals for her farm include healthy pasture, delicious vegetables, self-sufficiency, happy humans, and an intact sense of humor.

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A Closer Look: Plastic Strainer

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Today we are going to take a closer look at the plastic strainer.  These plastic strainers are one of my favorite tools for making both milk and water kefir. They easily catch the grains and fit over a wide-mouth mason jar lid with just a bit of overhang.

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Shannon

Shannon is a mama to four small children, homesteader, freelance writer, and picture-taker. She lives with her husband on their off-grid homestead where they make and eat kefir, kombucha, sourdough, and fermented vegetables.

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