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Making Pumpkin Puree

img_0005Fall is the best time of year because it is PUMPKIN SEASON!    Now is the time to get a few pie pumpkins and quickly make pumpkin puree.   Freeze the pumpkin puree and use it throughout the year to make delicious goodies.   Here are a few of my favorites:

How to Make Pumpkin Puree

  • Cut open the pumpkins, scoop out all the stringy goop and seeds (not the flesh). Cut into halves or quarters (depending on how big the pumpkins are)
  • Place pumpkin halves upside down on a cookie sheet (with a raised lip) and place 1/2″ of water in the bottom of the cookie sheet
  • Cook in the oven at 325 degrees for 45-60 minutes, or until the pumpkins are really soft.
  • Remove the pumpkins from the cookie sheets and allow to cool slightly
  • Scoop out the soft pumpkin flesh and process in a food processor until it is smooth
  • Transfer to freezer bags or jars,  label with how much it holds & the date,  freeze (or continue to turn into pumpkin butter)

**My little hint for the best ever pumpkin bread, turn the puree into Pumpkin Butter first and then use the Pumpkin Butter in place of regular pumpkin puree … READ MORE...

Old Fashioned Walnut Bowl and Chopper

Last time I was at my grandma’s place, I told her that in her will I wanted her old walnut chopper and bowl when she passed away. Please don’t ask how that came up, it’s a weird topic I know, but none the less there we were.

Old Fashioned Walnut Bowl & Chopper - COLORADO URBAN HOMESTEADER

Old Fashioned Walnut Bowl & Chopper - Colorado Urban HomesteaderShe looked at me puzzled and was trying to recall where it was. I then explained that some of the best memories I have of us together were in the kitchen making cookies and breads and pretzels and taffy. She loved to bake, and my sisters and I got to help anytime we went to grandma’s house. When she needed nuts chopped, she would pull out her wooden bowl and old metal walnut chopper and she would let us kids take turns chopping walnuts.

She smiled and told me that I didn’t have to wait until she died…she was going to look for it and give it to me. Turns out that she still had the chopper, but the bowl got a huge crack in it a few years ago and she had to throw it out. She gave it to me last Thanksgiving.

Fast forward to Christmas 2015. My best Christmas present was this awesome Walnut Bowl made just for chopping. My mom had looked far and wide for a walnut bowl … READ MORE...

Cleaning Your BBB (Boar Bristle Brush)

An essential part of the No-Poo regime is the use of a Boar Bristle BrushHow to Clean your Boar Bristle Brush.  The Boar Bristle Brush (BBB) is excellent at cleaning your hair as well as redistributing the natural oils down the length of the strand so the oil is not concentrated at the roots, making your hair look greasy.

I have been doing No-Poo for two and a half years with great success.  Check out my other No-Poo related articles by clicking on the ‘No-Poo’ Page at the top.

With all the redistributing of oil, it is natural for your brush to get greasy and will need to be cleaned. 

 

Step 1: Gather your Boar Bristle Brush, your standard brush and your comb.

Clean your Bristle Boar Brush - COLORADO URBAN HOMESTEADER

Step 2:  Take all the hair out of your comb.

Cleaning your Bristle Boar Brush - COLORADO URBAN HOMESTEADER

Step 3:  Use the comb to scrape out the hair and debris from your brushes.

Cleaning your Bristle Boar Brush - COLORADO URBAN HOMESTEADER    Cleaning your Bristle Boar Brush - COLORADO URBAN HOMESTEADER      Cleaning your Bristle Boar Brush

Step 4:  Fill your sink with warm water and hand soap. 

I use my homemade hand soap, recipe found here:  Homemade Liquid Hand Soap

Also, squirt a few pump fulls of the hand soap onto the brushes and rub in with your fingers.

Cleaning your Bristle Boar Brush - COLORADO URBAN HOMESTEADER      Cleaning your Bristle Boar Brush - COLORADO URBAN HOMESTEADER

Step 5: Lay your brushes in the sink, face down and let soak for 5 minutes.

Cleaning your Bristle Boar Brush - COLORADO URBAN HOMESTEADER

Step 6: Use an old toothbrush to clean your comb.

Cleaning your Bristle Boar Brush - COLORADO URBAN HOMESTEADER

Step 7: Clean the
READ MORE...

Using Crushed Egg Shells in the Garden

Using Crushed Egg Shells in your GardenSpring is around the corner and refrigerators will be filled with eggs.  Perhaps it is because your backyard chickens are beginning to lay more as the temperatures warm up, or perhaps eggs are on such a great sale at the grocery store that you are stocking up for Easter and Easter brunch.   Either way, you are going to end up with A LOT of egg shells this time of year.  Instead of throwing them out, crush them up and use the egg shells in your garden or feed to your chickens.

It is known that using calcium supplements in your garden is a great way to prevent blossom-end rot in tomatoes and can deter slugs and other unwanted pests.  Calcium supplements are also important for your chickens so that they can continue to lay eggs.

Egg shells are full of calcium and other minerals, so instead of Egg Shells in the Garden - COLORADO URBAN HOMESTEADERpurchasing calcium supplements, you can make my own.

How to Crush Many Egg Shells

1. Rinse off the egg shells and let dry for a day or two
2. Put into a food processor or blender and pulverize to a dustEgg Shells in the Garden - COLORADO URBAN HOMESTEADER
3. Dump into a Ziploc bag or other container to store
4. Use crushed egg shells

      * When transplanting tomatoes, dig a hole, pour 1 teaspoon of the egg shell/calcium dust, … READ MORE...

What To Do On a Snowy Day? Make Snow Ice Cream!

How do you become the “Best Mom in the World” in 5 Minutes…..Show your kids how to make Snow Ice Cream!  

Is it snowing out and the kids are cooped up and getting restless?  Send them outside to gather some snow.  Then, throw the snow and the other 4 ingredients in a mixer and five minutes later, you will have vanilla snow ice cream.  Top your Snow Ice Cream with Sprinkles

Ingredients for Snow Ice Cream:

  • 12-16 cups of fresh snow
  • 1.5 cups of milk
  • 3 tablespoons vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup sugar

Directions:

Mix 5 Ingredients together to make Snow Ice Cream

Gather all your ingredients first (except the snow because we don’t want it to star melting). Mix the milk, vanilla, salt and sugar together in a large measuring cup or bowl.

Grab a large bowl and head outside to get approximately 12-16 cups of snow (if your ice cream is too liquidy, then add more snow later).

Fill your mixing bowl with the snow, and slowly add the milk mixture.  Run your mixer until all the ingredients are mixed together.  Viola!  Snow Ice cream.    *Generally after all that mixing, it is a little soft.  I put it into a freezer safe bowl and refreeze it before serving.*

Top with your favorite toppings, sprinkles are always a favorite!

Trust me, your kids will think an instant ‘Mom of the Year’ award  should be … READ MORE...