How To Make Cottage Cheese With Lightly-Soured Milk

by Tammy Taylor~

I love milk so I always have some in my fridge.  But sometimes travel or just the busyness of our lives means that milk sits in the fridge long enough that it’s not flavorful to drink anymore.  It’s become lightly soured.

Now I’m not talking about SPOILED milk here. I’m just speaking of milk a little too close to (or even just past) the date on the carton. That’s when the flavor starts to change somewhat.  In the past although I hated to throw it away, I’d sigh and pour it down the drain.  What a waste!  Then I thought for a moment – you can use lightly soured milk for making biscuits, sandwich bread or pancakes. I wonder if there’s another way to use it.  I know, I’ll make cottage cheese!  Oh man, it’s so easy…

I often use lightly-soured milk to make my own delicious cottage cheese. This reduces our food waste and provides delicious food. #TxHomesteader

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Hitting The Road: Granbury, Texas

by Tammy Taylor~

As our anniversary drew near, RancherMan suggested we take a short road trip somewhere relatively close to home.  We didn’t want to spend lots of money but we wanted a fun, romantic getaway.  After much discussion we decided to drive to Granbury, Texas.  We’ve been there on several occasions and it’s a fun town to visit.

RancherMan & I traveled to Granbury, Texas for our anniversary trip. What a wonderful time we had! Come see my kind of souvenier shopping. #TxHomesteader

 

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How To Get Cute Gingham Cloth Napkins for $1

by Tammy Taylor~

I’ve always used cloth napkins.  I mean, why not?  They can even make a meager meal feel decadent!  It’s a smart financial as well as environmental move for me.  There’s no disposable plastic-wrapped paper napkins for me to buy over & over again & throw away! I’ve got cloth napkins that are over 20 years old.  They still look great & are serving their purpose quite nicely.

Recently I wanted some red/white gingham napkins.  But y’all know how much I hate to get rid of this whatsit to buy that whatsit.  It just seems like an environmental waste to me.  But I REALLY wanted those cheery red & white napkins!

I wanted cute red & white gingham cloth napkins. A small tablecloth and a few minutes at my sewing machine was all it took. #TxHomesteader

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Homestead Hack: Tracking Your Rainfall

by Tammy Taylor~

We’re (once again) in the grips of a drought.  It seems most years in the past 7-8 our little homestead has struggled with terrible drought conditions.  The weathermen are finally predicting precious rainfall to bless us for the next several days.  Oh it won’t break our drought, but at this point we’ll take that tiny 1/8th inch that falls – ANYTHING!

I’ve got an easy way to track our rainfall which I find quite clever.  Oh sure I could measure the rain gauge contents and jot them down.  Then I could make note in a calendar to track. But I just never find time to enter it all or even remember to enter it.  But this Homestead Hack assures I’ll be able to easily document and track our rainfall throughout the year.

I need an easy way of tracking rainfall. Making notes on a calender doesn't work for me, but this easy Homestead Hack does. #TexasHomesteader

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Summer Cooking: Savory Meatloaf in a Solar Oven

by Tammy Taylor~

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We’ve been dealing with quite the heatwave here in NE Texas.  And much of the country is in the same grip of summer heat too.  When it’s this hot outside I try to keep the cooking heat out of our home.  For me, that means I’m using my solar oven almost every day.  (have I mentioned how much I love that thing??!!)

Today I’m sharing how I used my Cook-Once, Eat-Twice method of cooking to whip up two large loaves of meatloaf.  Sure, I used my solar oven to do the cooking. But my recipe below uses a conventional oven.  So whichever method you choose, you’re guaranteed to get a delicious meaty comfort-food entree with plenty leftover for the freezer too for quick heat-n-eat suppers another night.

I'm cooking up our favorite comfort food - meatloaf! I'm using my solar oven to cook it but the recipe includes standard oven directions too #TxHomesteader

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Bois d’Arc Trees are Beautiful & Functional Trees In Texas

by Tammy Taylor~

Isn’t it funny when you’ve lived somewhere all your life you just naturally assume others across the country enjoy all the same stuff you do.  Our daughter was shocked with she moved from Texas to North Carolina & found out they had no Braum’s Ice Cream Stores.  (gasp!)  Or Whataburger.  WHAT?  She soon moved back to Texas, thank goodness.  North Carolina was too far for her to live from her beloved Texas with all its fineries!  LOL

But here on the blog I’ve been surprised that readers say they’ve never seen nor heard of the Bois d’Arc tree.  (pronounced bō-ˌdä(r)k).  They pretty much grow wild here and we have these trees scattered throughout our property.  I love ’em, so I thought I’d write a little about these magnificent trees and how they’re used.

We have several Bois d'Arc trees on our property. Although they're beautiful, they're incredibly functional as well. And how about those crazy-looking horse apples? #TxHomesteader

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How To Purify Natural Beeswax From The Hive

by Tammy Taylor~

RancherMan & I have a small apiary.   The bees are fascinating creatures & invaluable in making sure my garden gets pollinated.  Plus they offer up that sweet delight during our summer honey harvest as well.   Around our area of NE Texas the honey harvest is usually done the first week in July.

But we don’t simply decap the honeycomb to get to the honey.  We go ahead & scrape the frames down.  We extract the honey and then turn our attention to that gorgeous natural beeswax!

I can easily purify our beeswax and pour the melted wax into cute molds. I use it for homemade soap, lip balm & beeswax wraps. #TxHomesteader

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Throwback Thursday: Cute Clothespin Apron

by Tammy Taylor~

Our clean clothes are always dried on the line.  Heck we live where blue skies rule, why not use that free solar energy to dry our clothes?  And that line-dried aroma?  (breathes deeply…)  Is there anything like it??!!

Recently for her birthday I made my sister the cutest clothespin apron ever.  (I’m jealous, so I want to use the rest of the cloth to make one for myself!)  It was easy even with my oh-so-limited sewing abilities, and she loves it!

To celebrate Throwback Thursday, I’ll share the tutorial today.  Check it out, y’all!

Throwback Thursday - clothespin apron tutorial. #TxHomesteader

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Easy Blueberry Muffin Recipe Using Fresh Blueberries

by Tammy Taylor~

I love blueberries! I’ve tried to grow blueberries several times here on the Homestead, but in the botanical hole of death that is our yard, it’s not been successful.  So instead I buy them. I can’t typically afford the fresh berries but I’m constantly using frozen blueberries by stirring them into my Homemade Yogurt or blending them with frozen bananas to make a healthy, cold summertime treat. Sometimes I thaw them & include them in my mixed-fruit bowl when I’m serving a cool yet healthy dessert.

But recently a friend invited me to go with her to a you-pick place to pick fresh blueberries. Oh how delicious, I came home with about a gallon of those big beautiful blueberries! I don’t typically buy fresh blueberries so this was a treat indeed. Sure I still stirred them into my yogurt and even ate some by themselves.  But I really wanted to do something special with them. Hummm… I know, I’ll make homemade blueberry muffins!

With a batch of fresh blueberries to enjoy, I decided to make Blueberry Muffins. So easy, so delicious. Come check out my recipe! #TxHomesteader

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Vegetable Garden Update: July

by Tammy Taylor~

Well, where to start??  This year my garden has struggled.  Hard.  It started by a bull jumping my garden fence and trompling the tenderly transplanted seedlings to the ground.  Not to be detered, I replanted by seed.  A late start, yes.  Buyt I just have to have my garden!

But spring skipped us.  I mean ALL of it.  We got no storms as is typical in our NE Texas spring season, but we got no rain either.  Then the heat & humidity of our summers hit – again with no rain. It’s a sad thing, but I’m making adjustments to try to squeak by.

The veggie garden has been a struggle this year. As much as I hate being Debbie Downer, unless we get rain soon my garden will be done for the year. #TxHomesteader

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