How to start a sourdough starter
Need: flour, water, glass bowl or jar, wooden spoon, tea towel, time
Stir together 2 cups of flour and 1.5 cups water in a glass bowl with a wooden spoon. Cover with tea towel (I secure mine with a rubber band) leave on the counter and come back in 24 hours. Each day for one week add 1/3 cup flour and ¼ cup water and stir well with a wooden spoon then cover. After one week your starter should be bubbling. These are the bacteria hard at work! If it is not bubbling you can let it set an extra day without adding anything and stir the next day to see if you caught and wild fermenters. If not, it may be best to try again. Maybe the spoon or bowl was contaminated. Once your starter is bubbling, use it as you wish! After each use I like to add ½ cup flour and 1/3 cup water to get it going again and give it a good day or two to get bubbly. You can put your starter in the fridge if you are not planning to use it at least once per week. When you get it out just give it a nice dose and a couple days to get active again. Happy baking!
Ingredients: Fennel bulbs chopped into large chunks, Olive oil to coat lightly, Balsamic vinegar to coat lightly, Salt and pepper to taste, Parmesan cheese to top
Preheat the oven to 400F. Toss all ingredients excluding the cheese in oven-safe dish. Top with cheese. Bake for 20 minutes. Enjoy!
This is a recipe for an elderflower cordial that I like to call a fizz once it is in cocktail form. There are a few variations here, but the possibilities are endless! Elderflowers contain their own yeasts so they create a fizz from ferment. The longer you let it ferment, the more fizz, and the more likely you may get an alcoholic drink. Let it sit for only the first two day period and add a splash of sparkling water when served for a non-alcoholic treat.
Ingredients: 1qt. water, 2c. sugar, 2c. raw honey, 2 organic lemons, 4-8 elderflower heads depending on size
Boil half the water and add to the sugar in a large jar. Stir to dissolve the sugar. Add the honey and stir in. Add the other half of the water. Let cool to room temperature. Slice the lemons and add to the sugar water. Add the elderflowers (they are best when picked in the morning. Do not wash). Push the lemons and flowers down into the water releasing all air bubbles and making sure the water covers the top. Seal and let sit in a cool dark place for two days. Shake daily. After two days, you can strain and put it in the fridge for a non-alcoholic drink, or strain, cover again, and let sit for a week at room temperature. Be sure to leave space at the top of the jar and burp daily. After a week, move it to the fridge and continue to burp daily for another week. You can serve it at anytime, or let sit longer depending on your taste preference.
Serve over ice plain, or with a splash of vodka and sparkling water.
Variations: Substitute 2Tbsp. apple cider vinegar for the lemons, use limes instead of lemons, add herbs like thyme, rosemary, or lemon balm, use all sugar instead of honey, use all honey instead of sugar, add an orange, have fun + enjoy!
The most delicious way to unwind on a hot day.
Ingredients: 1 pint vodka, 6 lemons peeled*, 1 pint water, 3 cups sugar
*To peel lemons use a sharp knife or vegetable peeler. Be sure to not get any white, this may cause the limoncello to be bitter.
Place the lemon peels and vodka in a jar, covered, in a cool, dark place for two weeks. Shake daily. After two weeks, strain and discard the peels. Boil water and add to sugar in a large jar. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Let sit and cool to room temperature. Add the lemon vodka to the sugar water and stir well. Place in fridge overnight to chill and voila! Serve chilled over ice or with a splash of sparkling water. Yum!
Nasturtium Flower Pickles
Adapted from a 1951 recipe for dill pickles. I just love the color and hint of peppery flavor the nasturtium flowers give to this old pickle recipe! I also added more garlic and some oregano.
Ingredients: Cucumbers (2 large cut into eighths or 10-20 small pickling, 1 cup water, 1 cup white vinegar, 1 Tbsp. salt, 2 sprigs dill, 3 springs oregano, 3-5 cloves garlic, 5 nasturtium flowers.
Equipment: Sauce pot and a quart-sized canning jar.
Bring water, vinegar, and salt to a boil. While waiting, pack the jar full of the cucumbers, herbs, garlic, and flowers. Pour the just boiling liquid into the jar to the top and cover. Try to refrigerate a day before breaking in to sneak a pickle. Enjoy!
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
2 cups honeysuckle flowers
Combine water and sugar in a pot over medium heat. Stir and warm until the sugar is dissolved. Pour the sugar water over the honeysuckle in a jar and let sit until room temperature. Strain and refrigerate.
Wild Daylily Tempura
Ditch/daylily goodness! Light and crispy, easy, and only a few ingredients. Be sure to identify correctly! The wild lily variety is what we are loping for, not to be confused with hybrid or tiger lilies. Only nibble a little at first to make sure there are no stomach sensitivities… Then enjoy!
Ingredients: 1 cup flour, 1 cup ice water, 1 egg, oil for frying (I used grapeseed), daylily buds*
*Be 110% sure when identifying!
Heat oil over medium to high heat. Sift flour and set aside. Beat egg in a medium bowl, add ice water and beat again. Add flour and mix with chopsticks until just mixed. A few lumps are okay. Do not over mix. Dip buds in batter and transfer to oil for 30-60 seconds or until light golden brown. Remove from oil and enjoy!
I like to dip in many things! Of course a sweet soy sauce is divine, but ranch and catsup are great too!
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