You can doooo it! Yourself!
Maybe it is the global pandemic, but lately I have had a real hankering to go totally pioneer woman and just make as much of my own stuff around the house as possible.
Which is why I have been absolutely loving making these kitchen staples myself.
Widespread panic, healthcare overload and toilet paper hoarding aside though, making these staples at home also reduces your carbon footprint, plastic consumption and saves money.
It can seem like a lot of extra work when put down on screen here, but in reality none of these “chores” really take that much extra effort or time.
Plus there is the awesome mind boosting bonus of the pride that comes with DIYing stuff, especially in the kitchen.
So get out your reusable storage bags, mason jars and can do attitude - and give them a try!
Whether you are making meatloaf, or hopefully transitioning to at least a few meatless meals each week (we love meatless mushroom balls around here!) breadcrumbs are a great and necessary addition to many recipes.
All you need to do is keep a storage bag in your freezer where you can accumulate stale pieces, scraps or heels of bread loaves.
Once your bag is full, break up the bread into pieces, bake it on a baking sheet at 350 for 10-20 minutes, stirring and checking on them regularly.
Remove the dish from the oven and let the pieces cool, releasing any moisture.
Then you can either grind it up in a food processor or put it back in the bag and roll over it with a rolling pin until it is as crumbly as you like.
Store it in the same bag in your freezer to prevent it from going bad and use it for up to 6 months.
I’ve been using this recipe and have had great success.
Again you will want a designated scrap bag in your freezer, where you can collect onion and garlic skins, vegetable scraps and any additional herbs or bits you like.
When the bag is full, bring a large pot of water to boil on the stove and dump in the contents of the bag, adding salt and pepper as desired.
Simmer for several hours, you should really be able to smell it before you stop it.
Strain out the cooked down veg and pour your broth into containers. Mason jars work great for storing in the fridge if you plan on using it within the week, or you can put it in reusable bags and store in the freezer for 4-6 months.
I follow the recipe from the real live Pioneer Woman, which you can find here.
Just like with cleaning supplies, alternative milks contain mostly water (same goes for that veg broth eh?). Does it really make sense to package and ship water while facing the horrors of climate change? If you weren’t sure, the answer is no.
Plus, making them at home is sooooo easy! I usually stick to cashew milk because unlike most other options, you don’t need to strain out any chunks so you still get to consume the whole nut while also enjoying a tasty beverage.
To make cashew milk, all you have to do is soak the nuts in water overnight, blend them up, adding some maple syrup if you like and oilla! Done.
My favorite breakfast is an egg and bagel sandwich with a healthy dose of microgreens or sprouts.
The issue I’ve had in the past though is that I either can’t find them or they go bad faster than I can eat them.
Which is why I started to just grow them at home, on my windowsill above the kitchen sink. And I’ve never looked back ya’ll.
Pour some seeds in the jar, just enough to cover the bottom. Put the lid on. Add water, pour out water, repeat morning and night. I just do it as part of the breakfast and dinner routines.
BOOM! You are a gardener.
Once the sprouts have really developed (takes anywhere from a few days to a week depending on the seeds) I will move the jar to the fridge, keeping up with the rinsing routine.
It is the most amazing thing happening in my kitchen.
Before we had kids my husband went through a phase where he was obsessed with fermenting vegetables.
He went a bit overboard (in my humble yet accurate opinion) and we had fermented beets and carrots coming out of our ears.
Because of the trauma I am still coping with of beets exploding in the cupboards, I stick to pretty basic pickling and only make about a jar at a time so that I know we will eat them.
This means I don’t take the necessary steps to truly preserve the vegetables, I am just going for the dilly flavor that makes a veggie wrap really rockin’, ya know.
This also means that whipping up a jar of pickled onions for taco nights is about the quickest and easiest thing ever.
You most likely have all of the required ingredients on hand already.
This recipe from Feasting at Home will have you stocked with tasty veggie treats that last 2-3 weeks in the fridge in just 20 minutes.
Ya all stocked up on garbanzo beans? Yeah me too. Add some garlic, tahini, cumin, lemon and salt and you’ve got yourself some dang good dip darlin’.
This is such a quick thing to make, can be stored in the freezer and makes a huge batch. Talk about cutting back on plastic!
Before we had to flea back to the states (wild exaggeration) due to the Coronavirus sitch, my kids and I were leisurely enjoying the blissfully hippy lifestyle of my sister in law and her family in Byron Bay, Australia.
Part of which meant being treated to many a tasty meal made by my brother in law. While they have multiple healthy, easy dinner solutions to feed their five kids, my biggest take away was definitely the homemade granola that he made up one morning like it was nothin’.
Granola doesn’t just come in pesky plastic bags, it can also be one of the most expensive items on my shopping list.
You have to try out Michael’s granola recipe for yourself and savor in that sweet, sweet money saving flavor. (Also it is better than any store bought granola I’ve ever had.)
Do you DIY any kitchen staples? Shoot me a link in the comments, I’m always up for adding more made by mama items to my arsonal.