Wednesday, October 20, 2021

20 Ingredient Substitutions A Must Have

I found this information on Food Network By Leah Brickle. Here is the link below: https://www.foodnetwork.com/how-to/packages/food-network-essentials/the-20-ingredient-substitutions-you-need-to-memorize

Baking Powder (double-acting): For 1 teaspoon, combine 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar and 1/4 teaspoon baking soda. The two combined will produce carbon dioxide gas which will make baked goods rise and puff as they bake.

Baking Soda: For 1 teaspoon, use 3 teaspoons baking powder. Baking powder will give a similar lift to baked goods — though it won’t neutralize acidic ingredients (cocoa powder, brown sugar) like baking soda does so the taste may be slightly different.

Breadcrumbs: Crushed crackers, crushed pretzels or crushed potato chips work nicely. Alternatively, for 1/2 cup breadcrumbs, grind 1 slice of bread in a food processor.

Brown Sugar (light and dark): Try turbinado or muscovado sugar, which are both less refined than granulated sugar (muscovado also has some natural molasses just like brown sugar). Alternatively, for 1 cup, combine 1 cup granulated sugar with 2 to 3 tablespoons molasses. The resulting baked goods may be crunchier and sweeter.

Chicken Broth: Vegetable or beef broth. Or try water seasoned with a little soy sauce, bouillon cubes or bouillon granules — or even water by itself, if the recipe requires a cup or less. Water is amazing: it provides the same moisture and volume as broth and can be easily seasoned to taste.

Half-and-Half: For 1 cup, combine a scant cup of whole milk and 1 tablespoon melted butter. Alternatively, combine 3/4 cup whole milk and 1/4 cup heavy cream.

Heavy Whipping Cream: You can only make these substitutes if you're not actually whipping the cream. Try Half-and-half or, for 1 cup, combine 3/4 cup milk and 4 tablespoons melted butter.

Herbs: For 1 tablespoon fresh herbs, use 1 teaspoon dry herbs. This applies to both woody (rosemary, thyme) and tender herbs (parsley, basil).

Honey: Maple syrup, light or dark corn syrup. All have about the same consistency (though maple syrup is thinner), but the flavor of your finished recipe will vary.

Kosher Salt: For 1/2 teaspoon, use 1/4 teaspoon iodized (table) salt. The granules of iodized salt are smaller than kosher salt so they can’t be evenly exchanged — 1/2 teaspoon of iodized salt is saltier than 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt.

Lemon Juice: Orange juice or lime juice. All citrus adds acid and a little bit of sweetness.

Milk: Yogurt or sour cream thinned with water to a pourable consistency.

Nuts: Most nuts can be exchanged for each other especially in baking recipes like quick breads and muffins. If the flavor of a nut is important to a recipe — like with pecan pie — then it may be better to wait and get the nuts you need.

Sour Cream: Plain yogurt, Greek yogurt or creme fraiche. All 4 of these are fermented dairy products that will provide a similar tang and creaminess.

Soy Sauce: For small amounts: Worcestershire sauce. For larger amounts (like for a dipping sauce): Tamari, coconut aminos or liquid amino acids. While all of these are fermented sauces, Worcestershire sauce has such a distinct flavor that, if replacing a large amount of soy sauce, will be too distinct. The others will all meld and won’t overpower.

Tomato Paste: For 1 tablespoon, simmer 3 tablespoons tomato sauce or pureed tomatoes until very thick, then cool.

Vanilla Extract: Maple syrup, bourbon, brandy or rum. Pure vanilla extract is made by soaking vanilla beans in ethyl alcohol (vanilla essence or imitation vanilla also contains alcohol). All the suggested substitutions will help enhance the other flavors in a recipe — just like vanilla.

Vegetable Oil: Canola oil, olive oil, avocado oil, melted and cooled coconut oil or ghee. All of these have a similar smoke point: the temperature at which a fat will stop shimmering and start to smoke. Butter has a very low smoke point (which means it will burn quicker) so is not a good substitute for sauteing or frying. However, melted butter can be substituted for oil in quick breads and muffins.

Vinegar: Lemon juice or most other vinegars. Every vinegar will take on the flavors of what it was originally fermented from (white wine, red wine, raspberries). Keep those subtle flavor differences in mind though balsamic vinegar is a tad sweeter and more distinct than most.

White Wine (dry): Broth or stock. Alternatively, water with a squeeze of lemon or a splash of vinegar.



Saturday, October 16, 2021

USA Food Shortages Rolling Black Outs and Increased Energy Costs Basics

Food shortages are the new norm for the USA. Many still walk around in a daze of misbelief. For many that have stood in mile long lines for a free bag of groceries understand the reality clearly. It will knock on every Americans door. 

Now, we are facing shortages of not only food but clothes, electronics, vehicle car parts, home goods, shoes, toys, and medicine. Top that off with different forms of energy (oil, gas, electric, natural gas) with sky rocketing costs. These costs will determine if a family gets groceries for the week or not.

I felt it was important to remind everyone of the basics and what will come in handy with shortages, rolling black outs, and high living expenses that most are not prepared for. In the USA we have a few states that experience rolling black outs these events do not allow you to keep foods cold in a refrigerator safely. You need to change your way of thinking. Shelf Stable goods will be your go to items! Before we go any further Water is a Must Have!!!!

!!!!!Have Water!!!!!Have Water!!!!Have Water!!!!Have Water!!!!!

when it gets bad water becomes priceless. Look at the different weather events where the electricity was gone and water went from 

$4.00/$6.00 a case to $40-70.00 a case Cash Only

!!!!Have Cash!!!!Have Cash!!!!Have Cash!!!!Have Cash!!!!

When the electricity is gone no one will be able to do a purchase unless you have cash in small bills. Don't expect to get money back.

Here are a few of my articles that maybe helpful:

https://www.afrugallifenow.com/2019/03/real-facts-dry-foods-vs-canned-in.html

https://www.afrugallifenow.com/2019/04/emp-are-your-really-ready.html

https://www.afrugallifenow.com/2019/08/the-signs-of-recession-are-clearare-you.html

Food: canned good are your best choices!! They require no rehydration (water) shorter cooking periods and no refrigeration. Some foods are ready to eat ( chicken, chilis, fruit, corn, and many more). 

Canned Goods List:

Canned meats: tune/chicken/ham/vienna sausages/jerky/fish

Cereals

Shelf Stable Milk- regular/evaporated canned

Protein or Granola Bars

Peanuts/Nuts

Dried Fruit of any kind/Canned Pickles/Beets/Apple Sauces/Fruit Cups

Peanut Butter/Smaller Jam Jars that can safely used with a few days time

Snacks (Chips/Crackers/Cookies/breakfast bars)

Pre-packaged meals like Hormel that are already cooked. 

Home Canned Meals/Meats

Canned Soups 

Canned Beans

Jarred Ghee (butter)

Canned Cheese (Bega)

Save fats from meals example meats/bacon to use again. If I have missed anything please leave a comment below.

The next article we will discuss keeping warm or cool. Looking at what is happening in the world and how people are coping around the world.








Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Food & Product Shortages Hitting USA

 

Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine the USA having food and product shortages. Going to the stores finding empty shelves and signs with limits on product per person. Having to wear a face mask because of a pandemic (Corona Virus). Having to stand 6 feet apart. Using Lysol wipes on everything, hand sanitizer every day, washing my hands constantly and watching for any kind of symptom my body may exhibit. Watching our country shut down for months. Trying to make ends meet with finances, food, shelter, gas, and utilities. Staying home....for many families this meant virtuall learning for children. I had no clue what Zoom was but I learned it and so much more. 

Everyday I see more warnings on the news around the world of shortages. I see the struggle in many countries and its at our door. The average family has 2-3 days of food in their home. A frightening thought. We should aim to have several weeks, months, or year of goods in our homes. To safe guard our families.


Shortages on vegetables/fruit. Look into growing your own food in pots or using hydroponics. What in the world is Hydroponics? It is a way to grow food using nutrient rich water and no soil. They can grow in doors all year round or outdoors in a Green House. I have a Aero Garden it has its own grow light and sits on my kitchen counter. On a tight budget there are a ton of videos on YouTube to help you create your own Hydroponics system economically. 
 

Shortages on meat have been in the news. The best way to combat this is canned meats, beans/lentils/legumes and other protein rich foods. 

Shortages on toilet paper and other goods. Think of your families needs.... the amount of  usage then look for sales and get these goods into your home. 

At the end of the day it's about being pro-active, smart, and goal oriented. Make a list keep it on your person and when sales pop up take advantage for the necessary goods for your home. No need to panic just change your way of thinking and doing things to adapt to the current situation at hand. Prepping your home is the best insurance that always pays it forward to your benefit.


Saturday, August 21, 2021

Walnut Pumpkin Pie With Crumble Topping Recipe

 


I recently posted a photo of the Walnut Pumpkin Pie with Crumble Topping I baked on my Youtube Community page (https://www.youtube.com/c/OnlyInMyDreams/featured). I looked around my pantry shelves and gathered what I had. I chose a different boxed cake mix topping (spiced cake) because I didn't have vanilla cake. It turned our great. I didn't use a graham cracker crust either didn't have it on hand but it still worked out. As a prepper I am always looking for ways to use what I have into meals, bakes, and deserts. The pumpkin I used had a best by date of 2018. It was just fine. I have written articles on food safety and steps to follow when using canned goods past the best by date. Here is a link: https://www.afrugallifenow.com/2020/08/real-facts-dry-foods-vs-canned-our-new.html


1 can of pumpkin 15oz

3 eggs

1 can of evaporated milk 12 fl oz

1 cup of sugar (I used half)

1/2 tsp of salt

4  tsp of pumpkin pie spice

1 package of yellow cake mix (I used spiced cake)

3/4 cup of butter (melted)

1 cup of chopped walnuts

1/2 tsp vanilla

Graham cracker crust pie (pre-made optional)


Step 1

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease one 9 x 13 inch pan (preferably metal).  (I used a pyrex glass pie plate)


Step 2

In a large bowl, combine pumpkin, evaporated milk, eggs, sugar, salt, and pumpkin pie spice. Mix well. Pour batter into the prepared pan.


Step 3

Sprinkle the dry cake mix evenly over the pumpkin mixture. Melt the butter or margarine, and drizzle it over the cake mix. Sprinkle walnuts over the top.


Step 4

Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until done.

Monday, August 2, 2021

Dollhouse Miniatures Do What You Love

 

In this video you will see the before and after of my Buttercup kit house. I changed up the living room and bedroom of this charming little cottage towards a Christmas Winter Theme.

  Often times we forget the little things that bring us joy. I have been lovingly curating Dollhouse Miniatures 34 years. It all began at age 16 when I visited Franks Nursey that no longer is around. They had pre-built dollhouse's on display along with dollhouse kits, accessories, and more. Their dollhouse section was clearing out from its store. I jumped at the chance to buy my 1st dollhouse at age 16 with the money I had saved from doing odd jobs here and there. 


                                  This is my 1st Dollhouse that began my life long hobby.

  I remember the excitement of it all very clearly. I teeter tottered the huge dollhouse on top of a shopping cart. I had a small 2 door car. As I struggled to make it fit I tried every which way to make it happen ..at lass it didn't. I felt defeated. 

 I had to ask a friend with a SUV to help. He came and helped me load it into his vehicle and get home. This is when my life long love began for dollhouse miniatures. 

  As time passed and seasons changed in my life so did my ability to enjoy my hobby. There were  times I had to put them away for what felt like years while I worked full time and had children.

 Just within these past few years. I have been able to re-discover them once again. The peace of mind and relaxation I get from them is wonderful. 

Note: We moved around alot. Each move proved loss's of broken miniatures and houses. Basement floods that had even more loss's than I care to think about. The artisan hand made pieces are bitter sweet loss's to say the least. This still did not douse my fire and enthusiasm for my hobby. 


Thursday, July 15, 2021

Be In The Moment


What are the essential skills for homemaking?

I grew up in a home where my mother was never home. I was not shown or provided the steps how to make a home a peaceful, calm, or a loving place. As, I forged my way in the life. I picked up a little here and there. I never truly understood till later in life. What it was all about. I also found that every home will be different. We should appreciate the difference's in the families and their homes. Embrace the unique ways each home serves them.

Not every home will have a cookie cutter look. Nor will you find a picturesque view as above. We all are in different seasons. We should enjoy these times. 

Regardless if you live by yourself, partner/husband, or family (with kiddos). We can be in the moment everyday when cooking, reading, laughing, crafting, walking, talking, washing dish's...or simply looking at the sky. Retraining our thoughts to savor the simple moments in life that have been given to us. I know this is not what you expected.

Especially, with the subject of essentials of homemaking. I feel it's extremely important to start where it all starts BEING IN THE MOMENT.

I struggled today to write this. I found myself not truly being in the moment. I kept looking around at everything that had to be done. Listening to my children their banter. Worrying about the 100 plus degree weather today. The dish's in the sink. The bank run that has to be made. Dinner for this evening. The laundry in the basket, mirror to be cleaned, vacuuming and the list goes on. I had to truly stop clear my mind and be here for this moment. So, it can be done my friends. Enjoy these moments in life every single one counts.



 

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Look At Your Pantry What Do You Really Have? U.S. Food Prices Sky Rocketing

In real life our pantries may look like these photos. A bit disorganized and haphazard. It's not do to lack of trying but busy lives, kiddos, or stress. Taking 15  minutes a day to work on your pantry will allow you to see what you really have. You might find you have bought the same thing many times over. Now you can really see what your family needs. Make a list of needed items to keep you on track while shopping. 

Sticker Shock
As you go to the store you see prices are rising and packages getting smaller in ounces or pounds. The level of stress rises a bit as you struggle with the amount at check out shaking your head. You begin to wonder if you will be able to make these choices stretch. Now, those fun go to items are not as many. You begin to watch the news to see what exactly is happening? Will this be a short time of increased food prices? The Answer No. Watch my video below.




Now that you have a clearer picture of what is happening in the world with farming, weather, cyber attacks, droughts, and inability to import enough. Now you find yourself making more meals at home. This may not be something your used to so you stress a bit it but push on. Important: if you lost your job/work part time/ or full time and cant make ends meet. Food prices are hurting your ability to pay other bills. Consider going to a food bank, church, food pantry or getting state assistance. Till you can get back on your feet. 


 I know I have given you alot to think about. Now is the time more than ever to go through your shelves and truly see what you have. Look for simple recipes of 5 ingredients or less. These can be found on the internet, magazines, cook books, and family/friends. Making a menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner may help to guide your usage of pantry and time. Larger crockpot or pots of stews, soups, and other meals will carry over for a day or more. Have containers for left overs that can be used for other meals or in between snacks. Some may have box mixes that have sat unused. Pull them off the shelves and make those breads, muffins, biscuits, cakes, scones, cupcakes and cookies. These will hold over little tummies and provide a pick me up when times are hard.  Lastly, we will all have to rethink what we do and adapt to the ever changing times. You may run across empty shelves again but not do to Covid and unpreparedness. But do to inability to farm, inport/export shortages, weather, droughts and more. Be prepared buy a little more here and there and it will add up quickly. Check out my other prepping articles.

Monday, May 10, 2021

Herb Garden Forget the Grocery Store Fresh Is Best


 Herbs are one of the easiest plants to grow. Being able to take a few steps outside your door to get fresh herbs is amazing. With rising cost for herbs this is a major money saver. Our meals are more flavorful and aromatic. 

Monday, April 26, 2021

Dollar Tree Prepping

 


Yes, you can prep at the Dollar Tree. Here in my video above you will see the items I bought for our prepper pantry.

Shelf Stable Gossner Milk and Almond Milk

Barilla Angel Hair Pasta

Barilla Thin Spaghetti

General Mills Cereals

27 Cans Campbells Soup (Chicken Rice, Tomato, Chicken Noodle)

Other Foods

Hungry Jack Dehydrated Hash Browns

Seeds

Children's Battery Operated Tooth Brush's

Regular Tooth Brush's 

Ropes (Hanging Clothes to Dry) or in a emergency a Dollar Tree Tarp and Rope use as shelter between 2 tree's

Mop Heads Cotton for Wicks in Oil Lamps

Mouse Traps (Just in Case)

Hand Soaps Name Brand

Cleaning Products

Hair Products Name Brand Full Size

Antifungal Foot Cream (Compared to Lotrimin)

Anti-Diarrhea Caplets (Compared to Imodium AD)

I always take advantage of great deals for home decor, books, along with crafting supplies as well. As I am a avid crafter this is greatly appreciated. I will be sharing in my next video 2 deals from CVS where I got Toilet for Free! Im always on the hunt for deals. I watch Youtube Couponers that list the deals and all you have to do is find them and make sure your coupons online/paper are clipped and go!


Thursday, April 1, 2021

Home Series What I Do Every Month

                                                                 

The 1st day of every month is a fresh start for everyone. You can take time to reflect and re-group. Get your favorite drink find a cozy spot to sit get notebook and pen. Now with a clear relaxed mind write your goals and thoughts. Your list will change as you go and will be different every month. Depending on life and its events.

My goals and thoughts:

Time with God/Meditation: find a good time either during the day or night to dedicate at least 15 minutes

Organization: work in 20-30 minute intervals in certain sections of my home everyday 

Finances: set up my budget and goals

Health: continue to work on

Prepping: go through my pantry and storage see what we need to replenish

Business: work on my business(s) and it's passive incomes

Donate: every month (clothes, shoes, kitchen items, home decor misc)

Study: economy/agriculture and its effects on the world so I better prep at home

Home: change out decor, bedding, curtains, and candles to suit the weather and time of season with what I have at home.

Crafting: make time for my hobbies dollhouse miniatures, jewelry, wreaths and paper crafts

Recipe Books: pull some books out and do recipes







Thursday, March 4, 2021

Prepping Dry Goods Low Cost & Easy

 

                                                Dry Goods 

You can prep with what you have economically. Most homes have rice, sugar, beans, corn meal, oats, and salt. Storing dry goods is easy. Using recycled jars from other goods like pasta sauce jars, jellies, coffee, or pickles. Wash them and dry thoroughly. Re-cycling glass containers are a cost free way to ensure longer shelf life. TIP 1: place your dry goods in the freezer for a few days before placing them in containers this will lessen the chance for weevils and insects.  TIP 2 Did you know dried bay leaf's help keep insects away. By adding a few dried bay leaf's in each container this can help keep insects and weevils at bay. The glass helps with rodents like mice. 

What are dry goods?

Rice   

if stored properly can last indefinitely in a cool dry dark place 

(White Rice) 

NOT brown rice this has a short shelf life. 

Oats

dry oats can be stored a long time if stored properly in a cool dry dark place

Sugar

if stored properly can last indefinitely in a cool dry dark place (never add oxygen absorbers this will turn the sugar into a hard block) 

Beans

if stored properly can last a very long time in a cool dry dark place

Wheat Berries (Flour)

if stored properly can last a very long time in a cool dry dark place

Salt

if stored properly can last indefinitely in a cool dry dark place

Pasta

if stored properly can last a very long time in a cool dry dark place

Corn

corn kernels can last indefinitely is stored in a dry cool place (never add oxygen absorbers the kernel needs the moisture to pop) 

Corn Meal

if stored properly it can last a long time in a cool dry dark place


 










Saturday, February 6, 2021

Preparing For A Snow Storm

We have a Winter Snow Storm headed our way tomorrow.  I'm glad I went to the grocery store to get a few odd's and end's. The video below.

It feels good knowing my family is well taken care of. When simple things like making a meal, bread, or yummy dessert bring's smiles. I will be going through my stock pile and pulling out some Organic Tomato Soup that needs to be used. To complete with a side of grilled cheese. I have some ground beef I have been de-thawing. This will make a great meat sauce with  pasta topped with grated cheese and side salad. The remainder of the ground beef can be used for a meatball soup with some left over herbed rice. I always change up recipe's. I will add my herbed rice and only use beef for my meatball's. I don't enjoy celery so that will not be used. The base recipe is a great one with a few personal taste tweeks.

Here is a recipe by Rachel Ray that looked really good: https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/rachael-ray/mini-meatball-soup-recipe-1941150

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 47 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Cook: 27 min
  • Yield: 4 big servings 
  • Ingredients

Grilled 4 Cheese Sandwiches