Turmeric Powder Tincture 

When I first met my now husband he introduced me to herbs to help with skin issues. He suffered a skin injury that required almost a year of medical attention but wanted to help his skin in any way he could. So he looked to herbs. The best way to get the herbs he chose to help in his opinion was to ingest them. Now we use many of the herbs he loved in our food and tisanes frequently. Turmeric is one we go through a lot of. It helps with inflammation and many skin issues are the product of other health problems such as this. Check out the link at the end of this post for more in depth information.

When a neighbor/friend asked if I wanted her bag of turmeric she didn’t like (it has a peppery taste that isn’t appetizing to some) I started brewing up ideas for usage. More than putting it in almost everything we eat. Which poses an issue with my toddler who ends up staining her clothes with any food saturated with it. I decided the first thing I wanted to make with it was a tincture. 

Most recipes I found suggested using the root. Fresh or dried in slices to help the alcohol base saturate it more easily. Well, I didn’t have a root. I had powder. So I did a 1:5 concoction to test it out. 1 part turmeric powder to 5 parts alcohol. It worked great! It was also really fun to work with and see the lovely color changes. The powder is a gorgeous yellow color and once it settled it created a red hued liquid. Later I saw it was more orange when not stacked the way it was but still lovely. 

One small pint jar creates a ton of tincture in my opinion. So unless you have a large family using it, are taking the tincture several times a day or are creating to share this should work great to start with. I filled two 2 oz dropper bottles to last me a while and barely made a dent in the tincture. I left the rest to continue brewing until I needed to strain some off again for use. 

This is what I used: 

I filled roughly 1/5 of the jar with powdered turmeric then filled it up with the alcohol.

After mixing gently and being sure to scrape any bits off the bottom I noticed the amount of product went down.

So I topped it off with a bit more alcohol. 

Then I added the lid and shook it up! Making sure to get any clumps out. 

It WILL settle and you will notice that it may look something like this:

It will definitely still brew perfectly fine so no worries! What you need to do though is shake vigorously every day at least once until the day before you decide to strain it. 

Typically, you would leave this for 14 days then let it rest on the 15th day before straining. That’s the bare minimum needed. I let mine brew for almost 3 months. Many saw the longer the better with tinctures. 

When the time came to strain I got out my sterilized bottles, a funnel, a bowl to catch any spillage, a measuring cup and a magic eraser sponge because I’m bound to spill something! 

I poured off some of the liquid from my jar into a measuring cup. Purely for the ease of pouring from it. I made sure to let the jar settle so I would get the least amount of powder in as possible. You can strain your concoction if you wish but I found that powders can be tricky business to work with. So I decided to use just the liquid from the top of the jar. 

Once I filled my bottles I put the leftover tincture back in the jar to save for a future pour. Letting it continue to brew.

I put some in my iced tea to test out immediately. A few drops definitely effects the flavor! If it’s too much to sip a drink with it then use the dropper to squirt directly into your mouth then chase with a drink or food if needed. Or add it to your food. 15-30 drops a day up to four times a day is the highest recommended dosage. Though I am not a doctor or certified herbalist so please do your own research! 

I then labeled my bottles and put the jar back in the dark cupboard. 

For an in depth look at the uses and side effects of turmeric feel free to check out this article: http://www.m.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-662/turmeric

Homemade Chicken Broth/Stock

We love soup. There really isn’t more to say about it! Any time of the year is soup time. Even when it’s hot! In the past few months we have been unfortunate enough to purchase two boxes of stock that were opened. The second we even looked at the seal but apparently not hard enough. When we have fresh herbs and such handy we just let the soup we are making create its own broth. For these however I was making really basic chowders that needed something already made for it. I KNEW BETTER than to just buy some but sometimes when you are pregnant and without much time and just want a bowl of chowder before you scream at someone…then you buy store bought stock. Luckily, I had some dried ingredients I used to create a quick stock after opening another already opened box. Sometimes I’m not always so lucky though.

We had another super convenience food buy recently as well. A store made rotisserie chicken. We also picked up a raw chicken to cook the next day. I used the carcasses and odd uneaten bits to turn into a broth. I started with just one in a enameled cast iron pot. I added vegetable scraps, dried herbs, spices and a few tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to help pull goodness from the bones. I noticed even on low the container would get too hot. So I transferred it to a crock pot with another carcass and set it on low for about 4 hours then on warm for another 20 or so. I wasn’t keeping too close of track. Some recipes say 8 hours is good while others suggest 24…so choose what works for you! 

I strained off the chunky bits and put the stock in mason jars to freeze. Mine had some fat and such in it that rose to the top but that tasty goodness will be delicious in future recipes. When you want to use them just leave out to defrost! We use stock often so these jars were a good size for us but you can portion them differently easily! 

There are many health benefits to stock made like this compared to store bought. Minerals from the bone marrow, potassium, protein, calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, etc! You can get similar or all these and more from other animal broths/stocks as well. Vegetable broth is also very healthy if not moreso! Happy homesteading! 

Homemade Soy Nut Butter Recipe 

My husband and I are always looking for more healthy foods to try and ways to make things we love from scratch. We got the idea to make soy nut butter (like peanut butter) after making soy milk regularly and using the leftover bits in breads and such. You can use the ground bits if you make your own soy milk or you can buy/make roasted soy beans and start from there. 

There are different ways to make nut butters. I made a vanilla, raw cacao and cinnamon almond butter before as well as other butters but unless you have a bad arse expensive blender or something of that nature…don’t expect it to be smooth. You will not be creating a smooth PB or Nutella in your food processor if you got it for $20. That’s the kind I have…so I know. Still, it’s fun and the results are great for baking and sandwiches. Soy nut butter is actually smoother than many nuts I have worked with. The recipe below is just one way of going at making soy but butter. It won’t last as long as commercial nut butters and this recipe contains water so I would refrigerate it and consume in less than a week to be safe. Feel free to experiment and share your results! 

You will need: 

* 1 cup roasted and unsalted soy nuts (if they are salted exclude the added salt in this recipe) You can also cook down (to get the earthy flavor out) then roast the leftover soy nuts from making soy milk. 

*2/3 cup room temperature water

*1 1/2 tbsp of your oil of choice. I am using coconut oil for the added thick texture and creaminess. You may need to add more oil depending on how well your mixture is blending. Or more liquid sweetener. 

*1 1/2 tbsp (alter to taste) of your choice in liquid sweeteners. I am using local honey but you can use something like pure maple syrup or agave if you prefer yours to be vegan. 

*1/3 tsp salt (alter to taste)

Add your soy nuts and water to a blender or food processor. Blend well then let sit until the soy nuts have absorbed most the water and are soft. It doesn’t take very long. 


Blend again before adding in the rest of your ingredients.


Continue to blend/pulse until it has reached your desired texture. Again, be aware that unless you have a high powered blender this won’t have the perfectly smooth look and feel as factory made butters. I had to stop and stir a few times. Be safe and unplug your blender/food processor first. 

Scoop out and enjoy! I put mine on homemade bread. 

English Muffins Recipe

Growing up my mom always had English Muffins around the house. I wasn’t super fond of them unless slathered in a bucket of butter. Things have changed. I love them now! Then again I am much more fond of soured breads these days. Hence why I post mostly sourdough bread recipes. These are easy to make and don’t take much time other than having to wait a bit. 

My pictures are a little off. The light in my house isn’t great. Also, I made two batches of these in the 24 hours. I didn’t finish getting pictures of my first batch before having to hurry and cook them up so I started another batch to finish getting pictures. My husband may have only left 3 behind so the child and I were craving more after breakfast. Good thing I had more dough ready! 

You will need:

*2 3/4 cups unbleached all purpose flour 

*1 cup milk. I have used everything from heavy cream to buttermilk to nut milks. I even used my coffee creamer in a pinch. 

*1/2 cup of well fed sourdough starter 

*1 tbs sugar

*1 tsp baking soda 

*1 tsp salt 

*cornmeal 

Mix 2 cups of flour with the milk and sourdough starter. Cover with either Saran Wrap or a cloth. Bug season has started so I used a press and seal type wrap the first time around. I am not fond of the stuff so I used a cloth and tucked in the sides the second time. Leave for at least 8 hours. I left mine for about 16 hours both times. 
  
  
  
  
  

Add the remainder of the ingredients.
   
    
 

Mix as much as you can. It will be slightly dry so kneading will help. 
Place into a floured surface and knead lightly. 
  

Let rest 5 minutes. 

Now, I dust the ball of dough and the counter with cornmeal. Many recipes have you dust after cutting but the dough isn’t moist enough at that point to really grab a good bit of cornmeal. So I dust everything. 
  

Roll out to about 3/4 of an inch thick. I use the lid of a mason jar as a guide to get it near that. If you’re using a cookie cutter or cup just roll out to around that thickness. 

Cut out with your choice of a mason jar lid, cookie cutter, cup, etc. 
  

Place on more cornmeal to rise slightly for at least an hour. The first time around I left it for about 4 hours as we played outside. Hence, why I rushed to cook them when we got home. It was way past dinner time! They were perfectly fine though. 
  

To cook oil a pan and heat on low. Cook each side for about 6 minutes. After they are done you can eat immediately but they also freeze well for later use! They also reheat in the toaster beautifully! I should note my batch made with dairy didn’t puff much when cooked but when I used almond milk they puffed like crazy! So fluffy and light! Both delicious. 
  
  
  
   
   
  

Homemade Coconut Milk Recipe

We make a few different types of nut milks in our home. We rarely buy animal milk and when we do raw goat milk is our top choice. Most made from scratch nut milks take 12-24 hours to make as the ingredients need to soak. Coconut milk is great when you don’t have that time. It doesn’t need to soak and still tastes great! You can use fresh meat if you don’t mind breaking open and cleaning out a coconut. Or in a pinch (or if you need a longer self life for the ingredients) you can use dried coconut meat. Be aware that some are sweetened. Also, note that the meat straight from the coconut creates a richer milk. 

You will need: 

*4 cups water

*1 cup (or around there) coconut meat
  

You will also need a blender, cheesecloth/strainer, and a container (I prefer mason jars) to keep your milk in. Sweeteners are optional and to taste. You can also use extracts to change/enhance the flavor. 

To make add all of your coconut meat and half the water to the blender.
  

Blend on high for a few minutes. 
  

Let rest 5-10 minutes. I sometimes leave it longer and go clean up toys or wash dishes. 

Add the rest of the water and blend again for a few minutes. 
  

  

Strain through cheesecloth or a strainer. Leave the meat in the cloth if you’re using that and let sit a few minutes. 
  

Use the cheesecloth to gently squeeze out any more liquid.
  

  

Store in a jar or pitcher for 4-5 days. 
  

Enjoy!