Monday, May 24, 2010

Day 99- Lazy Day

I planned to turn the seriously over-ripe apples from two plus months ago into apple butter starting yesterday, but didn't get around to it. Apple butter should be a good use of the fruit I'm not eating, and it's too grainy at this point for eating raw. I just hope it's still good inside, and not supporting wildlife. At least when/ if I get around to this I'll have something other than salsa or bean cooking juice to spread on bread.

For food I had a corn muffin with green tomato chow-chow for breakfast, some dough flavored like tofu breading that I fried, and another muffin with the last of the chow-chow for dinner. Oh, and about 5 cups of tea, including the only bag of lemon zinger I could find in the whole dratted collection.

Tip- If you know people who can food and they give you a home-canned jar of something... When you're done, clean the jar and give it back. Pretend it's bake ware, or something, but give it back. Returning canning jars is a good way to get more jars of snazzy home canned food as gifts. Or at least save yourself from being thought of in unpleasant ways when your friend/ canner is one jar short for their current batch.

On the Challenge- I feel like a total slacker now- I set a challenge and 4 or 5 people have already finished and reported back (sparkly points for promptness, BTW) and I'm still not even sure if I'm making tortillas or bagels.

In case it's holding you back from trying, oh random internet people, if you've *never* cooked something at all, then cooking anything counts. If the most you've ever done for your self is start the coffee machine, then making ramen from a packet or in a cup counts. Baby steps, right? Pick a level of home-made you're comfortable with, and work from there. Kitchens don't bite, just watch your fingers around knives.

Also, just because *I* don't use something to cook with, or as food doesn't mean you don't/ can't. If you've never baked a ham and ham's on sale, go for it! I'm not (strange tho it may sound) trying to make the world veg, Just me. If you want to try a veggie recipe- maybe you've never made something without meat before, I dunno- then go for it, but your challenge food doesn't have to be veggie or vegan. It just has to be fun.

Anyone else having trouble actually getting started?

Oh, and sorry for the lack of photos, but it's damned tough to motivate myself to upload and edit them at 5:30 in the morning. Oh wellz.


  1. I'm so with you on the canning jars. When I made pickles last year I gave my brother and his wife a jar of sweet and a jar of dill. Never got the jars back. He always asks for more pickles, but I tell him he's not getting anymore 'till I get the jars back.

    The food I picked for my challenge was vegetarian, I guess. I hadn't paid attention. I go through phases where I hate meat, which I'm in right now. I'll be out of it in a month or so. I made the boyfriend a hamburger for his bun.

    I usually let my photo's collect until I can't stand it anymore. Then I make a post. But I guess you can't do that.

  2. You bring a good point… we don’t have to go from normal cooking to the most extremely difficult thing in our minds (though I’ll agree, tortillas shouldn’t be that intimidating… or bread, but bread scares me—and I can bake cakes from scratch, why is bread so troublesome?). We have never baked a whole ham like they show on photos that can be sliced and usually just shred it up and stir-fry it. I made sloppy Joes for the first time just a few weeks back without having to add but $2 or so for Worchester sauce and buns, but that wouldn’t count. I’m making quesadillas for the challenge with handmade tortillas, and we have no cheese at home (yay?), so that’s probably where my $5 allowance will be going.

  3. I'm thinking, but haven't started yet. I'm so unmotivated some days and even though I came to your blog for food/money reasons, I think I identify more with your lack of motivation.

  4. Well, I made tortillas! But I've made them once before, so that doesn't really count.

  5. Alyse- those jars are *expensive*. I think people who only use them as decorative touches don't quite get how much of the cost of home canned food is tied up in that pretty glass jar.

    And I wasn't saying *not* to do veg, but clarifying my (admittedly scattered) rules, so people from the Paula Deen school of cooking don't get scared off.

    TJ- So long as you have fun, that's all that matters. Cooking more from scratch can be cheaper, but for some things, sometimes, mixes or pre-made could be cheaper. I'm just not sure what. Congratulations on picking something, now get to work!

    Cyndee- I totally get the unmotivated thing. I don't think I've really *cooked* anything I'd consider meal worthy or healthy since easter. Just have to keep trying. Well, and embrace the FAIL. (insert cute captioned cat)

    Marcia- woo hoo tortillas! Did they turn out better this time? Do you want to count them? I tend to be rather free and easy with rules like this. After all, the only prizes are invisible points and oohing and aaahing from us.

    Right, off to the library, where hopefully my total run of freakishly good luck will not turn, but rather ignore me for a while.

  6. God bless you for mentioning the canning jars. I have lost dozens of jar to people who never return them - and you're right; I'm far, far less likely to give them canned goods a second time (though the people who return jars find themselves being gifted with whatever I'm putting up at any given time). Canning is really inexpensive when you can keep using the same jars repeatedly but it becomes prohibitively expensive when you're spending $12-20 each time you can just on jars. And that continued need to replace jars is what usually keeps me from giving canned goods to people whom I know will just toss the jar.

    I think I might be too late to do the challenge, but if you extend the deadline or do another, count me in!

  7. Oh, wait. I lied. I still give home-canned goods to people who don't return the jars but live out of state from me. I just budget the jars into the gift cost. And I pretend they go on to use those jars for something else, even though I suspect that what really happens is they go in the trash like people often do w/ store-bought jarred foods.

  8. Wait- I'm supposed to *toss* grocery store jars? But then what do I put the apple butter in? Or left-over stew? Or when I'm *really really* thirsty and want something with a lid?

    I actually have a jar I need to return. I don't want my mother to get cut off from the home-canned food gifts because of me.

    Rules are pretty free and easy- if you can't do it now, do it soon and just let me know- I'll probably be doing a link list Thursday, so you might miss out on that. And, of course, you get fewer invisible points for late work. But I'll expect you next time- and try to give more warning, too.

  9. I dunno; I store pretty much every jar that crosses my path (and when I've got too many, I recycle or Freecycle them). But a lot of people I know just toss them in the trash when a jar is empty. Never really understood that mentality, but I do know it's prevalent.

    I might be able to get one submitted for you tomorrow, if I'm like, super-cool-and-motivated (which I tend not to be). I promised some apple butter to a coworker so I feel like I should get that done. Might do pear instead, though.