Kefir

Along with winter comes the  flu season that can give us a hard time. 😦

Well, what better way to boost your immune system than with a cup of freshly made Kefir?

What is Kefir?

Answer from Wikipedia:

Kefir grains are a combination of bacteria and yeasts in a matrix of proteinslipids, and sugars, and this symbiotic matrix forms “grains” that resemble cauliflower. For this reason, a complex and highly variable community of lactic acid bacteria and yeasts can be found in these grains.

We’ve been making kefir for quite some time now since we first got the kefir grains  from our uncle. I really recommend kefir, it has so many benefits, not only for your immune system, but also for other things like the digestion system.

Here is how you can prepare your kefir:

This is how the kefir looks when it’s ready

Place a plastic  strainer over a medium-sized bowl

Gently pour the kefir in the plastic strainer

Gently shake the strainer

You only want to be left with the kefir grains (this is what actually makes the kefir). Then give them a good rinse with cold water

Place the kefir grains back in the rinsed bowl

Pour some milk over the kefir grains (as much as desired, depends on how much kefir you want to make). Cover the bowl with a lid (or a plate) and store in a dark cool place.  The process will start all over again. It basically needs to stay like this for about 24 hours.

Enjoy!

Keep your kefir refrigerated. It’s really good! It’s a little more sour than the usual buttermilk, but you’ll get used to it. 🙂

Jessica

p.s. More posts coming up soon. Our oven didn’t work for a while so I haven’t been able to bake for a while.

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The late Thanksgiving post!

Was Thanksgiving really a week and a half ago? Wow, time flies by fast! I apologize for not posting this sooner, it was on my mind, but life has been quite busy these days. I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! I did. 🙂

I was able to bake my special Cranberry-Berry Pie (I combined a few recipes together and made my own recipe), and also a Apple-Crumb Pie. I planned to bake a pumpkin pie as well, and I even searched for a recipe. But, then I decided not to do it anymore. It sounded a little complicated (I wanted to use a pumpkin, not a pumpkin from a can), and I also didn’t know how it was going to turn out.  I didn’t mind though because we had store-bought pumpkin pie. 🙂 I also wanted to do the sweet potato casserole, but since I was so busy with the pies, my sister Abby offered to make the casserole, and it was a great relief. Thank you Abby!

Because I was practically baking two pies at a time, I don’t have too many step-by-step pictures. But I have pictures with the end results. I also had help from my sister Lois with cutting the apples. Thank you Lois!

Now for some pictures…

 The pie pans with their fruits ready to be made

The pies with their fillings ready for their crust

The Cranberry-Berry Pie!

Apple-Crumb Pie                                                                 

The great sweet potato casserole my sister Abby made!

All ready for the guests!

The pie table

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The recipe:

Apple-Crumb Pie

Ingredients:

Bottom Crust:

2 cups flour

1/4 tsp. salt

3/4 cups of butter

6 Tbsp. cold water

Crumb Topping:

1/3 cup sugar

3/4 cup flour

6 Tbsp. butter

Pie Filling:

6-8 apples (diced)

1/3 cups sugar

1/3 cups brown sugar

1 1/2 Tbsp. lemon juice

3 Tbsp. flour

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Directions:

Bottom Crust:

Mix together the flour, salt, butter, together in a small bowl. Slowly add the water. Form into a soft dough and place into pie dish.

For the filling:

Dice the apples. Mix the apples together with the sugar, brown sugar, lemon juice, flour, cinnamon in a pot. Place over medium low heat stirring occasionally until the apples become a little soft. Pour them over the pie dough. Place in the oven at 350 degrees for 20 min.

Wile the pie is baking, make the crumb topping. Mix the sugar, flour, and butter together in a small bowl until it becomes crumbly. When the pie is ready, sprinkle crumbles over the entire surface of the pie. Bake for another 15-20 min. Enjoy!

Jessica