I feel that it is important to continue to learn new skills even if we are getting older! =)
So I sat down and made a list of all the things I would like to try this year. I started already making a quilt but this will be a year long project as I will be putting the quilt together and quilting it by hand. I don't own one of those fancy long armed machines but I sure wish I did!
Homesteading Skills for 2010
January - homemade bread bowls
February - make napkins and tablecloths for home use (I have already made some napkins but will need quite a few more and I haven't tried the tablecloths yet)
March - make homemade butter - I want to try Rhonda's recipe that she uses over at the down to earth blog.
April - make homemade ice cream - also Rhonda's recipe .... I can see gaining a few pounds here!
May - making a rag rug
June - homemade dandelion jelly
July - learn to whittle - we have many willow trees on the property and I would like to try and make a cane
August - making bar soap - I tried this last year and was unsuccessful. I will give it a go though as I don't give up easily.
September - candle-making - I would love some homemade dipped candles
October - braided rug - I love the old-fashioned braided rugs and would love a new one for in front of my kitchen sink.
November - knit a pair of socks - this is way over my head but I want to try...even if they turn out a little oddly shaped, they are only for me anyway.
December - I am going to leave this month open. I would like to think of something that has to do with the season. I am sure I can find something before this month comes around.
There are my skills listed in black and white. Hmmm, some may be moved around throughout the year to different months but I want to be able to say on December 31st that I was successful this year learning 12 new skills that will assist me in living a more simple life.
January - this month's skill was learning how to make bread bowls. You know the type, in restaurants you will see salads, spaghetti, soup served in them. They are always so delicious when I have them when we are out dining so I wanted to try making them from scratch.
Last night dinner was to be spaghetti and venison meatballs so what a perfect time to try them!
Here is the recipe...
2 pkgs or 2 tbsp of yeast
2 1/2 cups warm water
2 tsp salt
2 tbsp oil
7 cups flour
1 tbsp cornmeal
1 egg white
1 tbsp water
1. In a large bowl dissolve yeast in water. Let stand 10 minutes.
2. Add salt, oil and 4 cups of flour. Stir well. Add 1/2 cup of flour slowly, mixing as you go.
3. When the dough has pulled away from the sides of the bowl, turn out on floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic .. about 6 minutes. Oil a large bowl, place dough in bowl, turn to coat with oil. Cover with damp cloth, rise until the dough is double in size, about 40 minutes.
4. Punch down dough, divide into 8 portions. Shape into round loaves. Place on lightly greased baking sheets, sprinkle with cornmeal. Cover and let rise until double in size...about 35 minutes. ***I made only 4 loaves so they would be big enough to hold spaghetti***
5. Preheat oven to 400F. In a small bowl, beat egg white and 1 tbsp of water, lightly brush loaves with egg wash.
6. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and brush remaining egg white wash on the tops and bake 10-15 more minutes until golden brown. Cool on wire racks.
7. To make bowls, cut 1/2 inch from top of each loaf, scoop out centers, leaving 3/4 inch thick shells. Fill bowls with chili, soup, salad, or spaghetti.
Just out of the oven.
So yummy! Sorry for the bad picture. My camera doesn't work well without natural light and it is dark here by dinnertime!
One homesteading skill for 2010 done! On to the next one.
Have a great day everyone and remember to give your loved ones a hug.