Suburbanmomcooks’s Weblog

July 20, 2008

Day 7 – PIZZA!

Filed under: Demarle,Recipes,sustainability — by CarrieK @ 3:57 am
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This morning I got the kids up, packed the lunch I described yesterday (in post Day 6) and headed off to pick blueberries. So wonderful being out in the field in the cool morning. There were very few people there and the berries were not all ripe (more picking next week I think) but I still managed to bring home 6 1/2 pounds of berries. The kids did great, L picked a lot, C ate a lot (yay! he ate! something good!) – not a diaper I was looking forward to – and we were home in time to go to swimming lessons.

Tonight I attended a westside get together of a Gooogle Group I belong to. We have all taken classes with Monique Dupre about sustainable living. Check out her website sustainablebudget.com. We got together to share ideas and information in person. I got some great ideas about canning and preserving (I have a lot of blueberries to put up this weekend!) It’s nice talking with other people who make their own yogurt and kefir and who preserve and garden. It was a beautiful night to be out.

Since I was going out, I made a pizza. L’s favorite! I used premade dough from Trader Joe’s, part of a jar of marinara and grated cheese (raw, organic jack) Pretty simple dinner. I shaped the dough on the Silpat, spread out the marinara and sprinkled on the cheese. I baked it in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 20-25 minutes. I’m so proud of my DH, he remembered to take the pizza off the Silpat before cutting it!

I’m going to skip Day 8 because we were invited to go to dinner at a friend’s house. I think I’ll take some blueberries….:)

July 17, 2008

Life in the Suburbs is under attack!

Filed under: Demarle,garden,grocery,Recipes,sustainability — by CarrieK @ 6:34 am
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Ok, here goes….my first blog. I have no idea what I am doing, so I’m just going to go for it. I am writing this blog to help me keep track of changes we are making in our lifestyle. Life in the Suburbs in under attack! With the mortgage crisis and high gas and food prices, life in the suburbs is becoming much more difficult. It’s one thing to dream about wide open spaces on a farm or easy access to everything living downtown, but life in the suburbs has it’s perks too. Our little slice of suburbia includes great neighbors, lots of kids, full grown trees, a 4th of July parade, easy walking and biking, sprinklers in summer, and very little traffic. We are walking or biking distance from 2 parks, 2 grocery stores, 2 books stores and Jamba Juice. It’s a nice life. But as it is, it’s not necessarily sustainable.

This blog is going to help me track progress on a new menu plan to help us save money, organize new recipes and help me plan our “Victory Garden. I want to keep track of how I use Demarle at Home baking/cooking products, and how it all fits together in a sustainable lifestyle. I think my journey towards healthy food, sustainable living in the suburbs and self sufficiency is worth sharing with other families living and struggling in suburbia. I hope this becomes a forum for exchanging ideas, information and resources.

I have been selling and using Demarle at Home Flexible Bakeware for over a year now. It has cut my time in the kitchen down, saved me time washing and helped me prepare healthier food for my family. Demarle’s flexipans are made of very high quality, food grade silicone. The thing that really sets the flexipan apart from other flexible, silicone bakeware is the woven glass. Sandwiched in between the silicone is woven glass. It’s brilliant because glass is a very good conductor of heat, so your food cooks very evenly. Because the outside is silicone, nothing sticks to it, not lasagna, not cake, nothing. You don’t need any spray, extra butter or flour in your flexipans. You plop the food right in and it slides right out.

Another big point for me is the reusability and safety of Demarle bakeware and cookware. There is no chemical transfer of any kind when you bake in a Demarle Fleixpan. It’s safer than nonstick or aluminum and easier to use. All the black flexipans have a lifetime warranty. You will not need to replace them. Can you say that about your current bakeware?

Most of the recipes I’ve been using in my Demarle Bakware are from Sally Fallon’s Nourishing Traditions. It’s a remarkable book with waaaaay toooooo much information about nutrition, the politics behind food and ways to prepare food in a more healthy and sustainable way. My favorite recipes to date are the waffles and pancakes (absolutely the best I’ve ever had), chicken stock(it was very hard to add the chicken feet the first couple of times….!), rice pilaf, Kombucha (Wow! I could drink this stuff all day and it’s so easy to make), cream cheese (yup, cream cheese, from whole, raw milk no less!) and crispy nuts. I’ve tried to start out slowly and make changes a few at a time. Each recipe has gotten easier over time; it’s really more of an attitude shift. I spend my time soaking grain, fermenting Kombucha, straining whey from milk instead of standing in line buying dead/processed foods, unwrapping it all and throwing half of it away. I don’t think I spend anymore time in the kitchen that I did before I started reading Nourishing Traditions. Using Demarle bakeware makes prepping and clean up easier. It’s a nice marriage: whole, real food cooked and prepared in reusable, safe bakeware.

My next step is a garden. We are going to cut down some sickly trees in our backyard in the hopes of bringing some sunlight into our very shady NW yard. I am going to reuse the cement chunks (it’s actually really beautiful aggregate) we pull up from around the sick tree to build the garden beds. I think we have room for about 3 beds measuring 4×10 or so. I want to have room for 2 blueberry bushes, some rasberry canes (from my neighbor) and some blackberry bushes (replanted “volunteers” left behind by the squirrels). I have been looking at a website called Squarefootgarden.com that teaches you how to divide up and plant in square foot areas. It discusses plant rotation and soil too. It’s the first website I’ve been to that explained things in a way that I could understand. Come fall, I should have some winter crops in the ground. I will miss frequenting the Farmer’s Market, but my priority is to get our grocery bill down. And I want my organic produce!! It’s all about self-sufficiency.

So, the bakeware, the food preparation and the garden are all my way of creating and maintaining a more sustainable lifestyle in the suburbs. That and being prepared for anything. It’s a nice feeling to be able to depend on yourself for food.

My future dreams include at least 2 laying hens, a booming garden with year round produce, and a group of like minded people to meet with, share ideas with and possibly barter with. I am creating a sustainable, suburban lifestyle.

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