Image

Ugh…I’m so full.

A problem that many privileged Americans face.  In fact it’s not only the privileged that are facing this problem, it’s also the underprivileged, middle americans that are overeating. In America we have an abundance of food.  It’s great, however, as the saying goes, too much of a good thing is a bad thing.  Our industry encourages people to get more and more food. Why? Because we can.

Image

Food is everywhere.  It’s being sold on the highway, in towns, at vendors, from trucks.  It’s everywhere! The trick is to step away from the media fire blowing up king-size burgers and candy bars in your face and listen to your body’s needs.

Image

This is not easy, but, with the food situation in our country, it’s necessary.  And I am not saying that I understand this or even pretend to be fully in-tuned with my bodies needs, however, I do understand that I need to try in order to be healthy. One of the best ways I find to distract my body from the temptations swirling around me is to cook food from scratch. And that’s what were doing today.

Image

Things just taste better when your own hands did the chopping or pressing or kneading. That sweat, blood and tears that go into it add a bit of sweetness.  However, these coming up recipes don’t need any added sweetness they are beyond delicious themselves.

First up…

Fresh Ricotta

Image

Ingredients

  • 1 gallon whole milk
  • 1 quart buttermilk

Directions

  1. Combine milk and buttermilk in large saucepan. Heat without stirring until mixture reaches 180 degrees F
  2. Line a colander with a double layer cheese cloth and drain the substances from the saucepan, the curds are the white segments that remain above the cheesecloth and the whey is the yellowish liquid that seeps through the cheesecloth (reserve the whey  for the bread)
  3. Let drain for 1 hour then spoon ricotta into airtight jars and refrigerate for up to 1 week

Rustic Bread

Ingredients

  • 3 cups warm ricotta whey
  • 1 Tbs yeast (1 packet)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbs sugar
  • 7 cups whole-wheat flour (or 4 whole-wheat 3 all-puporse)

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, combine warm ricotta whey, yeast, sugar and salt. Let sit 5 minutes until slightly bubbly
  2. Stir in first 3 cups of flour, combine with a heavy spoon.  Continue adding flour a little at a time until dough is smooth and elastic.
  3. Once dough has reached an elastic consistency knead for 10 minutes
  4. Let dough rise in a greased bowl for 1 hour, or until doubled
  5. Split the loaf and shape dough into two even loafs and place is buttered loaf pans
  6. Cover both with a floured towel and let rise for 1 hour
  7. Bake for 25 minutes in a preheated 350 degree oven.

Sautéd Peaches

Ingredients

  • 1 peach, sliced
  • handful of dried cherries (or other dried fruit)
  • handful of walnuts (or pecans)
  • 1/2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 Tbs butter
  • 2 Tbs White balsamic vinegar (or any good vinegar preferable balsamic)

Directions

  • Warm the oil and butter in a skillet (cast-iron skillet if you have one!) over medium high heat
  • Once the oil and butter begin to froth/bubble add the sliced peaches, sauté for 5 minutes
  • Turn and sauté for another minute or so
  • Add the dried fruit and nuts, sauté for a minute or so
  • Turn the heat down and add the vinegar, scrape the bottom of the pan with wooden spatula, cook until most of the liquid has evaporated from the pan
  • Remove from heat, drop on top of a slice of the Rustic bread spread with a generous covering of fresh ricotta

Notes

  • Ricotta recipe adapted from Relish, a small amazing magazine that offers many fresh, seasonal recipes. It comes every once in a while with our subscription to the Record. Basically the reason I get the Record. JK the record is great.
  • Rustic bread adapted from Chickens in the Road originally called Grandmother Bread
  • You can substitute water for the whey liquid in the Rustic Bread.
  • But if you do decide to make ricotta you will have a lot of leftover whey (even after you make the bread) so if you click here this website will show you 16 ways to use your leftover whey!

Alright, so you don’t have to make all three of these from scratch at one time but try making one of them. Or if you don’t like any of these try making something you love from scratch.  You will appreciate it more and therefore not devour it as someone would a bag of Lays. I bet your inner voice will thank you.  Have Fun!

Advertisements