How to Make Sourdough Biscuits

Put your sourdough starter to use by making these incredibly delicious sourdough biscuits! You’ll never make regular biscuits again.

Sourdough starter is a God send. Whoever looked at some flour and water and said, “man, if I ferment this for a week and then add it to everything, it’s going to taste amazing”…..that person needs a big hug and a paid vacation. Seeing as they probably didn’t get those a few centuries ago.

I have always had a love for sourdough bread, but when I started making sourdough I realized I needed more than just bread for all of this starter I had left over every week.

Enter left stage…. “The Amy Who Makes Everything With Sourdough Starter”.

From chocolate cake and English muffins, to good old sourdough bread and starter. But my recent discovery? Biscuits….

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Homemade Chicken Pot Pie with Rustic Crust

A thick pie crust and warm chicken and veggie filling are the basis of this rustic homemade chicken pot pie. Just like grandma made it, you’ll enjoy this recipe for years to come.

Homemade Chicken Pot Pie with Pie Crust

One of my family’s favorite dishes is a piping hot homemade chicken pot pie. But you can’t just make a chicken pot pie with a pre-made crust. No way. It must all be homemade from start to finish. That’s the best part of this rustic homemade chicken pot pie.

Not only is this recipe easy to make, it’s also easy to freeze. This recipe makes two chicken pot pies, which means you can freeze one and have a freezer meal on hand as well. It’s easy to whip together, and your family will love this hearty meal on your farmstead table.

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Peppermint Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

One of my all time favorite cookies is the chocolate crinkle cookie. I can remember, as a kid, always trading for the chocolate crinkle cookies at lunch time, because they weren’t a cookie that my mom or grandma ever made. I’m not sure why they didn’t make them, but I knew they were something special. That fudgey, gooey inside is enough to make the soul happy any day of the year. But it’s especially inviting during the holidays.

Now that I’m an adult, chocolate crinkle cookies are always on my list to make during the holidays. They are my absolutely favorite. But I learned something new—you can make them better. Right!? I didn’t know it was possible either, but it totally is! My secret ingredient? Peppermint essential oil (or extract). 

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Homemade Chai Tea Mix

Homemade Chai Tea Mix

Nothing says “winter” more than a good chai tea. There are so many different recipes for chai tea floating around in the world. Depending on your culture, heritage, or taste preferences, chai tea made in one home can taste completely different than chai tea in another home. 

The best part is—no matter which way you like your chai tea, you can make a simple chai tea mix ahead of time so that it’s ready and waiting for you whenever the mood strikes you. Here’s one of my favorite Chai Tea mix recipes from my book, The Homesteader’s Herbal Companion

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How to Make White Pumpkin Pie

Every year we go to a local pumpkin patch up the road from our house. Each year, this sweet old man tells us about his pumpkins, and how to make pumpkin pie. He tells us about how the deer ate half of his pumpkins again this year, and about the little pumpkins, the big pumpkins, the giant pumpkins, the gourds, the weather….but the best part? He tells us the secret to his favorite pumpkin pie. White pumpkins.
He’s used all the pumpkin varieties he has on his property to make pumpkin pie. But he leaned down one year and whispered, “you know what makes the BEST pumpkin pie? The white pumpkins.” Ahh, and there it was. The secret of all secrets. I chuckled and thought, yeah right, white pumpkins. But deep down inside, I wanted to know if this fella really knew what he was talking about.
And so, the story began of our white pumpkin pie.

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Gluten Free Quinoa Patties (with video)

How to make gluten free quinoa patties

One of my all-time favorite things to make are these gluten free quinoa patties. Several years ago, while attending one of our local “crunchy girl” parties, a friend of mine made these and I just had to have the recipe. With our diet beginning to change and trying to eat more gluten free items, it was time to start perfecting this recipe! Trust me, you’ll want these quinoa patties on your “to-make” list . . . even if you aren’t eating gluten free! They are just that good.

What is Quinoa?

Before we get to the recipe, you might be wondering what, exactly, is the quinoa in these quinoa patties. It’s simple really. People often say that quinoa is a grain, but it’s actually a seed that derives from the Andes Mountain region. It’s often referred to as the “gold of the Incas”, because it contains more protein than any other grain, and was used extensively by the Incas.

Quinoa is extremely easy to digest and completely gluten free—a bonus! It’s a great source of calcium, vitamins, iron, and amino acids.

Quinoa tastes a little nutty in flavor. You’ll need to play around with it in dishes to get it to where you like the taste. Once you figure that out, you’ll never stop using it. You cook quinoa a lot like rice—one-part quinoa to two-parts water.

Ingredients in the Quinoa Patties

While this recipe has been adapted with different ingredients, you can add whatever type of ingredients you’d like. If you don’t like kale, use spinach or swiss chard instead. Throw in some mozerella instead of feta. The possibilities are endless! Be creative and make an Italian version using Italian herbs instead of the cumin. I love how versatile this recipe can be. More than anything, I love growing my own fresh herbs to put into these patties.

How to Make Quinoa Patties

  • 2.5 cups cooked quinoa
  • 3 to 5 eggs
  • 1/2 cup gluten free baking flour (or panko bread crumbs)
  • 1 tsp baking powder (optional)
  • 1.5 cup roughly chopped kale
  • 1/3 cup Feta Cheese
  • 1/3 cup fresh chives
  • 1/3 cup fresh dill
  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, diced
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed and diced
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  1. Pre-heat oven to 400-degrees
  2. Take cooled quinoa and pour into a large bowl.
  3. Add eggs and mix well.
  4. Add all remaining ingredients and mix well.
  5. Form into sticky patties and place onto a greased baking sheet.
  6. Cook for 20 minutes. Flip and cook for an additional 5 to 10 minutes.
  7. Serve plain or with tzatziki sauce.
Tzatziki Sauce Ingredients:

1/2 English cucumber, peeled and diced
16 oz (2 cups) Cold plain Greek yogurt
4 cloves garlic, pressed
1/3 cup chopped dill, fresh
1.5 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper

  1. Mix completely and serve, or allow to sit overnight for best taste.


Watch Me Make Them Here!

How to Make Gluten Free Quinoa Patties


How to Make Venison Scaloppine


Harvesting your homestead bounty is one of the greatest accomplishments you’ll ever achieve (especially if it involved harvesting meat, like venison). I can remember the first garden I planted—it was a disaster. Not only that, but I had the worst time trying to find a cookbook specifically tailored towards the homestead harvest and garden. It didn’t matter anyway, I was a horrible gardener. But the really hard part was finding a cookbook for our venison bounty. Wild game is never easy to cook when you first start down that journey, and I was determined to master venison.

It helps, however, to have mentors and experts sharing their knowledge and expertise with us. We find these people by reading books and watching videos. Most of them are humble, generous, and kind in nature. And Stacy Lyn Harris is one of my favorite of them all.

I  can remember the first time I talked to Stacy on the phone. Her heavy southern accent was enough to capture any heart, and her down to earth attitude and outlook on life was encouraging. Since then, each time I connect and talk to her, I find a new thing to love about her. She’s someone I could talk to for hours about womanhood and motherhood, and she totally “gets it”. So when she published her harvest cookbook, Stacy Lyn’s Harvest Cookbook: The New Recipes and Tips for Sustainable Living, I knew I had to have it on my bookshelf. Not just because she’s a beautiful person inside and out, but because I know she gets this entire homesteading lifestyle, and the beauty that surrounds it.

Through vibrant photos, personal stories, and tips, I can hear that beautiful southern draw come through every page of this book. I was first sucked in by the photography and personal stories, but when the recipes came, my goodness, what a beautiful life we really do share.

This book takes you from garden to field, from woods to creek—Stacy has covered it all. Begin with the basic gardening harvests, how to preserve them, and how to use them. From recipes like common fried green tomatoes, to more unique recipes like strawberry clafouti. Then move on to herbs, more fruits, tree nuts, poultry and eggs, beef, fish, wild game, and more! Every single homesteader that cooks their harvest needs this book on their bookshelf. It has been one of my favorites for quite some time.

I am constantly trying to find new recipes for venison. Since venison is the main meat source on our homestead, after awhile, you can get tired of the same old recipe. This book help me combat that issue and broadened my horizons in new and amazing ways when it came to wild game. Not only that, I had some incredible side dishes and desserts to go along with it! But more than that, hunting for you own meat source is an incredible experience as a family.

I find that preparing for and hunting wild game has contributed to the closeness of our family. . . Each person contributes to the family’s sustenance whether it is to gather or hunt, or whether itis to prepare and cook the venison. It is all an adventure for every age whether male, female, old, or young.

There are no phones, gadgets, or distractions; just you, the kids, and the great outdoors. After the meal is prepared, the stories come to life of the hunt, and all the preparation and hard work together is rewarded with a delicious, succulent meal. — Stacy Lyn Harris, Stacy Lyn’s Harvest Cookbook

Here is this easy and delicious recipe from Stacy’s book!

Venison Scaloppine

Serves 6

1.5 lbs venison loin
2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3 extra large eggs
2 cups breadcrumbs, dried and seasoned
1 lb large button mushrooms, quartered
1.5 cups sherry or marsala wine
4 tbsp cold unsalted butter
3 tbsp fresh thyme leaves

  1. Slice venison into 1-inch pieces. Pound to 1/4 inch thick.
  2. On a plate, mix together flour, salt, and pepper. Beat the eggs with 1 tbsp of water on a second separate plate. On a third plate, add the breadcrumbs.
  3. Lightly dredge venison in the flour mixture, the the eggs, and lastly the breadcrumbs.
  4. Heat oil and half the butter in a large cast iron skillet or saute pan. Cook venison about 2 minutes over medium heat on each side until brown. Transfer pieces of venison to a cooling rack.
  5. If necessary, add a little more olive oil and the mushrooms to the pan until juices have been absorbed. Add sherry to mushrooms and reduce by half. Add remaining butter to the pan and bring just to a boil. Lower the heat to medium and cook for about 5 more minutes.
  6. Stir in the thyme leaves. Pour mushrooms and sauce over the venison and serve.

Here’s what you can find in Stacy Lyn’s Harvest Cookbook:

  • The Garden: Heirloom gardening, growing and cooking, types of gardening, preserving, and more!
  • Beyond the Garden: Foraging for wild fruits, herbs, and greens; beekeeping and honey; poultry and eggs
  • From the Pasture: Beef, pork (and other white meats), and lamb
  • Woods and Water: Venison and red meat, sausage making, substitutions, wild game, seafood and fish
  • . . . along with personal stories, history, and packed full of over 100 recipes!

I hope that you’ll check out this delicious homestead cookbook from my friend, Stacy Lyn!

Buy Stacy Lyn’s Harvest Cookbook here!

Watch Stacy Lyn make Venison Scaloppini below!

Lavender-Lemon Pound Cake

My grandma use to make the best pound cake ever. She would even make her regular cakes more like pound cakes because she enjoyed eating them plain without icing. My love for cake probably stems from her, but it also spoiled me—as an adult, I just don’t like fluffy, light cakes. Give me the dense, thick pound cakes, and you’ll be my best friend forever. Pound cakes aren’t for sissies . . . they’re for farmers. I especially love the simplicity of this old-fashioned lemon pound cake, with a hint of lavender and a drizzle of sweetness.

You can most certainly omit the lavender if you don’t like a bit of floral in your sweet treats. My husband and son don’t care for the lavender, so I make one with lavender for me, and one without lavender for them! The lemon pound cake alone is delicious!


Lavender Lemon Pound Cake

  • 1 cup salted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar (or raw evaporated cane juice)
  • 2 tsp lemon zest, finely grated
  • juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 5 eggs
  • 2 cups unbleached flour
  • 2–3 tsp lavender buds


  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F.
  2. Flour a loaf or bundt pan. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar. Beat in lemon zest, lemon juice, vanilla extract, and eggs. Combine well, then add 1–2 tsp of lavender buds and mix well.
  4. Fold in flour in small batches until it’s all well combined. Do not over mix.
  5. Pour batter into loaf pans or bundt pan. Bake for 45–55 minutes, or until a knife or skewer comes out clean when poked. If the cake begins to brown too quickly, cover with foil.
  6. Allow cake to cool in pan for about 10 minutes, then remove and continue cooling on wire rack until cooled completely.

For the drizzle:

  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 4–5 tsp milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp lemon zest


Combine all ingredients until a thick but liquid mixture comes together. Drizzle over warm loaf so that it begins to soak into the cake.


Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

A couple of years ago—after fighting with digestive issues that I couldn’t explain—I realized that I had a gluten/grain sensitivity. Not necessarily celiacs disease, but a major sensitivity to gluten and certain grains. I’m a stubborn ol’ thing, so I tortured myself for two years before almost completely eliminating gluten from my diet. I still haven’t completely eliminated gluten, but I’m about 90% gluten free!

As you can imagine, especially for a girl who likes sweets, I needed to find some amazing and tasty gluten free recipes that could get me through the moments I had a sweet craving.

Enter side-stage, chocolate chip banana bread.

Dear sweet baby Jesus, it is divine. But let me warn you that you’ll probably sit down and eat the whole loaf by yourself, so if you’re looking to lose weight, it’s not the thing to make!

This recipe is incredibly easy to make. No need to even whip out the stand mixer, you can make it by hand if you want!

Let’s get started on this amazing goodness…




Old Fashioned Mennonite Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon rolls. My goodness, you can make them so many ways. Regular, raspberry, blackberry, peach….help  me, Jesus.

These are my go to cinnamon rolls. I’ve tried so many other recipes (even the Pioneer Woman’s, *gasp*), but this one, this one takes the trophy every.single.time.

I never measure things, and neither do the old-fashioned Mennonites. This recipe was actually adapted from an old recipe that a beautiful Mennonite woman gave to me. I had to learn, quite often, how to adapt recipes that I tried at home when trying to replicate Mennonite recipes from the cute little Mennonite store I used to work at. But, it has made me a better cook and baker because of it!

Old Fashioned Mennonite Cinnamon Rolls

Dough Ingredients:

1/2 cup warm water
2 Tbs of yeast
  • Stir together in small bowl (or your stand mixer) and let sit while mixing the rest of the ingredients.
1/2 cup salted butter
2 cups milk
1/3 cup sugar
6-7 cups flour
  1. Heat butter, milk, and sugar in a saucepan until butter is melted and sugar and salt are dissolved. Let rest until lukewarm. I actually just let it set for about 5 mins and then go ahead and use it.
  2. In a stand mixer, combine butter/milk mixture and yeast mixture.
  3. Add 6 cups of all purpose flour, slowly. Your dough should be a little sticky, but still firm. You can also knead by hand. If dough is still too sticky, then add up to another cup of flour in half cup increments. Knead until smooth and elastic
  4. Put dough in a greased bowl and lightly grease top of dough. Let rise for about 45 mins or until doubled. I like to use a heating pad to speed up the process, or I put the bowl on top of a towel over the burner that I was using to melt the butter mixture. Makes it rise quicker.
While the dough is rising….

1 stick butter

  1. Set out 1/2 to 1 stick of butter to soften while dough rises.
Once dough has risen….
  1. Once dough is risen, divide dough in half and roll each half out into a ½” to 1″ thick rectangle. If you’ve done it right, you’ll notice that your dough is very light and airy feeling as you roll it out.
  2. Spread 1/2 of the stick of butter onto the dough.
  3. Sprinkle a thin layer of sugar and cinnamon across the butter layer.
  4. Starting from a long side, begin rolling your dough tightly into a long cinnamon roll log.
  5. Once rolled, take a piece of thread (or use a sharp knife) and cut ¾” to 1” cinnamon rolls, depending on what size you’d like. Place in a buttered pan (I use 4+ round cake or pie pans, but you could use a rectangle baking dish). Let rise for approx. 15 minutes and then bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 10-15 minutes OR until tops are start to color around edges. You do not want your cinnamon rolls brown on top. As soon as they start to turn, take them out. This keeps them extra moist. Allow to cool until warm to the touch, then add frosting while still warm.
  6. You can use the other half of the dough to make more cinnamon rolls, or you can use them as dinner rolls.Now comes the best part…the frosting!

Frosting. It’s the best part of cinnamon rolls, isn’t it? This frosting is super simple and easy.

3 Tbs soft butter
4-6 cups powdered sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2-3 tbsp milk

  1. Stir together all ingredients, starting with just 4 cups of p. sugar.
  2. Add sugar gradually until frosting is “spreadable”.
  3. Frost rolls when they are still warm but not too hot. This allows the frosting to start melting, but still keeps frosting on top of rolls.

I hope that you and your family enjoy this recipe as much as my little family has!!


Homemade Mennonite Yeast Rolls Recipe

I started my very first job when I was a teenager in high school. It wasn’t some elaborate thing that I wanted (and I definitely didn’t know how to cook mennonite yeast rolls). I had big plans in my head of what I wanted to be, and baking wasn’t it. But never-the-less, it was an income for me to spend frivolously. And later in life I’d come to find that I would enjoy it more than I realized. My very first job was working in a little Mennonite specialty store and bakery in my hometown — it was called The Farmer’s Wife.

I could sit here and tell you that everything I learned when it comes to cooking came from my mom and grandma, but I’d be lying. You see, most of what I learned came directly from that little country store and the wonderful women that worked within it. But this particular recipe came from a beautiful Mennonite woman who I cherish deeply. She loves her family more than you could imagine. She truly is a Proverbs 31 woman, and she is inspiring even when she doesn’t realize it.

My need for a good mennonite yeast roll recipe came about eight years ago when my husband, aka Mountain Man, asked if I could make homemade rolls for dinner one evening. It also makes an incredible Mennonite Cinnamon Roll Recipe.

I tried, and I failed…drastically. Mountain Man isn’t one to hide his true feelings when it comes to things, which can be a good thing and a bad thing. This time, it was a bad thing, as his response went something like, “why can’t you make rolls like those Mennonite women do.” You have got to be kidding me….

So I humbly asked a friend for her favorite mennonite yeast roll recipe (after all, she was mennonite!), and she gracefully mailed it to me on a sheet of paper through snail mail. Snail mail….how official it was back then. It was nice getting something in the mail rather than having to print it off on the computer or stare at the iPad while making the recipe.

I made the recipe, and it was awful. I made it again, and again, the same outcome. By the tenth try they finally started to resemble normal yeast rolls. And what I quickly realized is that it wasn’t the recipe that made them good, it was the technique. I often watch food network, where they talk about people’s techniques in the kitchen. For years I scoffed because I truly didn’t think it made a difference….boy, was I wrong.

So with that said, below you will find the recipe, slightly tweaked, for these sinfully tasty yeast rolls. The recipe is extremely easy, however, I tried to convey the technique as much as possible in the recipe so that you can hopefully avoid having to make these ten times before you get them right!


Homemade Mennonite Yeast Rolls


1/2 cup warm water
2 Tbs of yeast
  • Stir together in small bowl and let sit while mixing the rest of the ingredients.
1/2 cup butter
2 cups milk
1/3 cup sugar
2 tsp salt
  1. Heat in a saucepan until butter is melted and sugar and salt are dissolved. Let rest until lukewarm. I actually just let it set for about 5 mins and then go ahead and use it.
  2. In a stand mixer, combine butter/milk mixture and yeast mixture. 
  3. Add 6 cups of all purpose flour slowly. Your dough should be a little sticky, but still firm. You can also knead by hand. If dough is still too sticky, then add up to another cup of flour in half cup increments. Knead until smooth and elastic, but still sticky.
  4. Put dough in a greased bowl and lightly grease top of dough. Let rise for about 45 mins or until doubled. I like to use a heating pad to speed up the process, or I put the bowl on top of a towel over the burner that I was using to melt the butter mixture. Makes it rise quicker.
  5. Punch down dough, grease three 9″ round pans (you won’t fill the third one completely). Grease your hands with oil if necessary for the next step. Pull off large walnut size balls and knead until smooth. Basically, if you’ve ever made loaf bread, this is the point where you knead and roll it to fit the loaf pan. I just knead it and tuck the ends up into the bottom center to make a smooth top.
  6. Put 8 to 12 rolls per pan — I prefer 8-9 for larger rolls. If you want smaller rolls, you can adjust size etc.
  7. Let rise for about 15 mins. Bake at 350 for 18 mins.


You’re done!


Watch me make them here —

Artisan Sourdough Bread and Starter

One of my favorite things to indulge in is bread. Though I can’t indulge often—because large amounts of gluten simply don’t agree with me—I have found that Sourdough bread is less harsh on my body.
Because of the fermented yeasty goodness, sourdough can be a great bread alternative for those with gluten sensitive digestive systems. Not only that, it’s simply delicious. The process of sourdough is incredible, and a science in and of itself. The bacteria and yeast break down the sugars and gluten in the bread, allowing your body to digest it better than regular bread.
Here is a great recipe that I enjoy making. Please keep in mind, this is a true sourdough recipe, therefore requiring a long amount of rising time to ensure the breaking down of gluten and sugars. This also creates that nice crusty outside, and large air bubbles on the inside of the loaf. I’ve also included my sourdough starter recipe.

Good sourdough bread must start with a good sourdough starter. If your starter isn’t active enough, your bread won’t rise properly. Here is my tried and true starter, and the one I always use!

Sourdough Starter

1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 – 1 cup cold water
1 quart size mason jar

Day 1: Combine flour and water into quart size mason jar, or large crock, until consistency is a thick pancake batter like consistency. Cover top tightly with a cloth or paper towel, secured with a rubber band. Set in warm place on counter out of direct sunlight. Consistency is the key in this recipe, not the amount of flour and water.

Day 2 and 3: Stir mixture daily. Add 3/4 cup all purpose flour and 1/2 cup cold water every 12 hours (or twice a day). Make sure that your starter is less than halfway full in the jar. If it is more than half full, it could spill over during fermentation. Simply pour off excess. In fact, I always take a cup of starter out before adding the flour and water. Again, consistency (thick pancake batter) is more important than amount of flour and water.

Day 4 through 5: Stir mixture daily. Add 3/4 cup all purpose flour and 1/2 cup cold water once a day. Again, pouring off any excess. You will continue doing this every single day from this point on. Transfer your starter to a permanent home such as a sourdough crock or larger jar. Do not use plastic or metal. Again, consistency (thick pancake batter) is more important than amount of flour and water.

Your starter will begin smelling very fragrant after day 5. Before day 5 it might smell very sour and musty. Don’t fret yet. As long as there’s no mold and you’re keeping up with feeding it properly,  you’ll be fine.

After it has successfully fermented, it will have a very lovely yeast smell to it, almost vinegary, and it will be full of bubbles. It can take up to 7 days of feeding your starter before it is ready to use. It will become very bubbly and active. Once it is ready to use, you’ll take out what you need and add flour and water back into the mixture every single day. If you are not going to make bread every week, then you can refrigerate the mixture and feed it once a week. However, it does much better just staying on the counter and feeding it daily.

Artisan Sourdough Bread

1/2 cup to 1 cup sourdough starter1/4 cup sugar
3 tbsp. oil
2 cups warm water
1 tbsp. salt
6 cups flour

1. Add all ingredients, holding back two cups of flour, into a mixer or large bowl. Knead until smooth, adding remaining 2 cups of flour, or enough flour until the bread forms into a soft ball.

2. Turn out onto floured surface and knead for ten minutes (or do so in your stand mixer), until dough is elastic and smooth. Flour loaf as necessary. Dough should be sticky by not extremely wet.
3. Put dough into greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and leave in a warm place to rise for 12-14  hours.
4. Punch down dough and turn out on a floured surface. Knead again for 2-3 minutes, lightly flouring if necessary.
5. Form a round loaf, pulling the top of the bread tightly. Very lightly dust outside of loaf with flour. Let rise on the counter or in a floured proofing basket for 2-3 hours.
6. Preheat oven to 375. Place a dutch oven (with lid) into the oven to pre-heat.
7.  After dough has risen, remove dutch oven from the oven. Remove lid and carefully place sourdough loaf in the dutch oven. You can rearrange the loaf into more of a ball if necessary, but do not knead. Place top back on dutch oven and bake covered for 30 minutes.
8. Remove lid after 30 minutes and cook bread uncovered until golden crispy or desired darkness/doneness. When tapped on, loaf will sound hollow when done.
9. Turn loaf onto a cooling rack and allow to cool before slicing.
10. Use a very sharp bread knife to cut into your loaf and enjoy!

Canning Peaches With Raw Honey


Canning is hard work, people—let me tell you. I do a little canning each year, but nothing like what my great Aunt used to do. When I think of a garden and canning, I automatically remember Summertime at Great Aunt Vergie’s house. That woman, she could can. Between her and my Great Uncle Al (who was married to my Great Aunt Rose who deceased very early in life), they must have had a 2 acre garden on Aunt Vergie’s property. They shared the space and worked together. Uncle Al lived all the way up in the big city, and he would come down and garden on the weekends.

Between the two of them, their gardening and canning was simply a way of living. And a pretty darn good way of living. They didn’t have websites and you tube channels. They just….lived.

And over the past few years, I’ve learned to just “live” too. Learning what I can , growing in knowledge, and experimenting with new things.

Because of this, last year was an experimental canning season for me. I’ve been canning for a few years now, but last year was the first year I had used raw honey in place of sugar. I specifically tried canning peaches last year. And here’s what I discovered….

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Sourdough Chocolate Cake

Sweet Jesus. Right in the middle of my weightloss journey, this recipe found me. I mean, all out-up in my face-train wreck at 100 mph-found me. It’s good, it’s real good, folks.

I don’t have any fancy pictures of it.

I didn’t even waste my time pulling my camera out, pulling the backdrop inside to set up a photo, and then editing and posting them on here. Heck no…

This cake is photo worthy, but I’m not stupid enough to let a warm, chocolately cake just sit there without being eaten. How rude of me. Nor am I stupid enough to cut a piece of cake days later, taking the risk of it drying out in those 10 minutes of photo time. Pfff, are you out of your mind!?

As much as I’d like to, I can’t take credit for this recipe. I came across it while strolling the internet. Seeing as we’ve restarted our sourdough journey, this was right up my alley. I must try it, and I did. And I succeeded….maybe a little too much!

Breakfast the next morning — don’t judge. Stop it.

This cake recipe came from King Arthur Flour. They have a lot of amazing recipes on their website — highly recommend them.

This recipe calls for sourdough starter. If you don’t have sourdough starter, you can create your own. We have it on hand every day because I make sourdough bread. It’s very easy and worth it. You can click here for my recipe. 

The one and only thing I would change about this recipe? I might have added a cup and a half of sourdough starter instead of just a cup. But it’s all in your taste! I also changed this recipe to reflect our preferences in sugar, flour, etc. This recipe also calls for icing, but it honestly doesn’t need it. It eats very much like a pound cake. We prefer it without icing, and with a nice cold glass of milk or some ice cream!

Sourdough Chocolate Cake

1 cup “fed” sourdough starter
1 cup milk (whole milk or 2% preferred) or evaporated milk
2 cups Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 1/2 cups organic granulated sugar or evaporated cane juice
1 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 cup unsweetened baking cocoa (not Dutch process)
1 teaspoon espresso powder, optional (I did not use it)2 large eggs

1) Combine the “fed” starter, milk, and flour in a large mixing bowl. Cover and let rest at room temperature for 2 to 3 hours. It won’t necessarily bubble, but it may have expanded a bit.
2) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly butter a 9″ x 13″ pan.
3) In a separate bowl, beat together the sugar, oil, vanilla, salt, baking soda, cocoa. and espresso powder (if using — I did not). The mixture will be grainy.
4) Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
5) Gently combine the chocolate mixture with the starter-flour-milk mixture, stirring till smooth. This will be a gloppy process at first, but the batter will smooth out as you continue to beat gently.
6) Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
7) Bake the cake for 30 to 40 minutes (mine was done in 20!!), until it springs back when lightly pressed in the center, and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean.
8) Remove the cake from the oven, and set it on a rack to cool while you make the icing (if making icing).


Homestead Cooking | Homemade Strawberry Shortcake {Seasonal}

Let’s just take a moment to wallow in the pity together, shall we?

The horrible realization that strawberry season is quickly coming to an end…..oh, the horror!!

But with strawberry season ending, that means so many yummy veggies, peaches (one of my fave seasons!), and eventually apple’s (another fave, even better than strawberries and peaches) , are well on their way into our kitchens!

With that said, I thought it only fitting to have a strawberry recipe as strawberry season slowly begins to die out this year.

You’ll have to excuse me, I was a bit under the weather yesterday, so I didn’t take a lot of photos. But this recipe is so easy that you don’t need them.

I was also torn between the “southern style” shortcake or the “take me back to my childhood” shortcake. Clearly, I chose childhood. Plus, it was the easiest for a sick mama who just went strawberry picking that morning!

Homemade Strawberry Shortcake


(recipe altered from a Food Network recipe ages ago)
serves 4 people


You’ll Need:
Strawberry “filling”:
1 qt fresh strawberries
+ 1-2 tbs sugar

2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
2 tbs sugar OR 3 tbs honey
3/4 tsp salt
1.5 cups heavy cream

Whipped Cream:
2 cups heavy cream
vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 400*.
– Wash, top and quarter your strawberries. Place them in a bowl, toss with 1 tbs sugar. Add more if you’d like, but 1 tbsp is generally enough for fresh picked  strawberries.
– Set strawberries in fridge and allow to set for 30 mins (at least).

– Combine the remainder of your dry ingredients. Stir together.
– Add heavy cream to dry ingredients and stir until just combined.
– Place mixture into an ungreased 8-inch square pan and bake until just barely golden on top (15-20 mins).

– Place heavy cream, sugar (start with 1 tbsp) and vanilla (start with 1 tsp) extract into a bowl. Whisk or mix with a hand blender until fluffy. I prefer the whisk, as it only takes about 5 minutes. Add more sugar and vanilla to taste if necessary. We prefer a less sugary whipped cream.

– Cut shortcake into squares. Place strawberry mixture on top of shortcake, and top it all off with some whipped cream.

Ta-da! You’re done! How easy was that?

Happy Eating!


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