Saturday, February 14, 2009

Selling on eBid







I am looking around for other selling venues to use other than eBay. I found eBid and have started working with it listing a few items. I will list more, but it is so very time consuming! Every selling venue is different and the differences make it work since you must adjust to fit the platform.



Check out my store on eBid. I have almost 300 items on eBay at this time and plan to switch over as eBid only charges you after you have sold! How cool is that!!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Easy Basic Bread and Pizza Dough


Basic Bread and Pizza Dough

I have used this same recipe for years with excellent results. Sometimes I switch out some of the white flour for mixed grains or wheat flour. It seems to be a very forgiving recipe that allows my creative urges to work. I have discovered that making my dough early in the morning gives the dough time to get a life of its own. When I rush the process, I am always somewhat disappointed. I often just use unbleached all-purpose flour because that's what in the pantry, but bread flour will give the bread a better flavor and texture.

I cannot emphasize enough to check the date of your yeast and don't buy in large quantities unless you are a weekly or daily bread maker! Yeast does not live forever. There is an expiration date on the package.

I always double the recipe because you will never know when I'll make bread again!


Preheat the oven to 500 degrees


Ingredients:
  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 1/3 cups lukewarm water...not too hot or it will murder the yeast!
  • 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt (but in reality any salt works)
  • Approximately 2 3/4 cups or 1 lbs of bread flour
I use my reliable trusty Kitchen Aid mixer with the bread hook.

Combine:
  • yeast
  • sugar and water
  • Stir just to blend and let it sit till foamy about 5 minutes.
  • Stir in the oil and salt
  • Add the flour a bit at a time making sure it is absorbed each time.

Keep the mixer running at medium speed while adding a little flour at a time until a ball forms around the hook. (turn the mixer down or off if you find flour flying about)

Now the magic of the mixer takes place while you continue to run the mixer for at least five minutes kneading the dough without the flour all over the counter top!


  • Turn the ball out into a bowl that has a tad of olive oil in the bottom turning the ball over to coat all sides
  • Cover with plastic wrap and sit aside either on the counter top or even in the fridge until doubled or tripled in size.

Some say that the slower method in the fridge makes a better dough, but I seldom if ever take the time to try that method. You would make the dough the day before baking if you used the fridge as a home to rise the dough. It can be left in the fridge for 2 to 3 days before baking.


Punch down the dough as it doubles and triples to get a live vibrant bread dough. You can do this several times. I love feeling the life of really good dough. You will recognize what good dough feels like once you make "bad" dough! LOL


Either place in bread pans to bake or roll out into pizza crust.
I use a pizza stone to either bake the pizzas or even to make a giant double sized loaf of fabulous bread. I coat the stone with a sprinkle of corn meal and slide the dough onto the pre-heated stone from a pizza paddle that I use after also dusting that with some corn meal to keep the dough from sticking. I roll each pizza out on the paddle, put on the toppings and slide it onto the stone.

Tip: I find that spraying water into the oven sides and bottom while baking bread gets the crusty top that we all love so much.


The last time I made pizza's my guest all wanted to take home the unused dough so they could have pizza all week. Since I had made two batches, there was plenty to share. They asked me for this recipe. I figured that there may be others out there on the internet wishing they could be inspired to make their own pizzas and breads.

I love using goat cheese along with other cheeses, eggplants that I have canned covered with olive oil, roasted peppers, lots of roasted and/or fresh garlic, chicken, sausage or whatever makes very yummy pizzas. Spinach is also a nice addition. Think about how healthy you can make a pizza.

I love beer with most of my store bought pizza's, but my pizzas taste better with red wine.

Happy Baking!

I remember years ago making bread into a naked woman by forming balls and pieces. She turned out really good since she grew as the bread was rising. I coated her with beaten egg whites so she glistened like the heavenly body she was! You could do this with your dough and make a cupid for Valentines Day or just a heart shaped loaf of bread for someone you love.

Bread making can be fun and an adventure working with a life force of rising dough. It makes you appreciate the cycle of life and the warm feelings of feeding friends and family something they love.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Do You Use Cloth Napkins?




My internet selling class is going very good! My students are now signing up with various selling venues to see how they work and love sharing their work with all of us. I have a lady in class, Lucille's Linens. That is her with her husband, Perry, in the second picture. She is making napkins and other table linens that are really first class with very large napkins that are lined and come in cute containers matching the design of the fabric. She signed up with that site for hand made items, etsy.com. She did a great job and I wish her well. It is hard to sell her linens where she is competing with Chinese made items. So, if any one out there is a lover of cloth napkins, Lucille Linens can help you out. Help our economy and buy local! She also has her own website, Lucille Linens.



Lucille figured out that if a family of four bought mid priced paper napkins and used one per person per meal, one would spend over 500.00 a year on paper napkins! Suddenly, her cloth napkins look like a deal!!....and fewer trees are cut down to support the product. Lucille includes this with each order. It was written by a relative and inspired her to create her napkins.

Evidence of a Good Life
By Barbara McCranie
Copyright © 2008 Lisa Haneberg

I feel good about the weirdest things.
This week I'm wallowing in the recognition that our worn table napkins validate a fine lifestyle:
not just great dining but a higher level of living.
It started when my husband suggested new napkins.
The dozen white cotton dinner napkins that we use daily are thin and frayed around the edges.
But they're soft, feel good, and proof of thousands of dinners for two.
The same old couple dabbing and wiping until their napkins are threadbare.
You can't replace that.
Worn table napkins are symbolic of: the soft touch of wrinkled hands,
worn elbow patches on a favorite sweater, a book with eared pages, a fireplace stained by smoke.
Testimony of a meaningful life.
New napkins would offer a promise; old ones are evidence.
On my list of wishes for my children: worn napkins.

Marjorie, who is the blond in the first picture, is using Etsy.Com to sell her hand-made cards. She is very talented. I could see her and Lucille getting together selling cards to go with napkins given as gifts! Marjorie is celebrating her Christain faith by creating her cards sharing inspirational messages. heARTforChrist's is the name of her Etsy.Com Store.

There is so much to learn and so little time! I am still adding to my Winchuck Training site with information that I have run across and my friend Jude also is doing a website sharing tips for working on the net. I will be posting the link to her site on Winchuck Training. More later!

Monday, February 02, 2009

Creating a Rustic Lodge Style Cupboard

My new business venture, RusticLady is both a retail location in The English Village Mall in Brookings, Oregon along with the name being a redirect to my Winchuck River Store website



Creating a new image of myself took a bit of work on my part. Above is the wooden sign I made. I will use it as a logo along with hanging it in my new retail area.
  • My husband used his router to round off the edges
  • I painted the board a deep salmon color
  • painted on a layer of crackle medium
  • a top coat of beige was the last coat
  • I used a putty mix with a stencil of aspen leaves to place two leaves on the sign.
  • I then kept painting the leaves with copper glaze, green and yellow and then a dry brush of the beige to soften the look.
  • I had aspen leaf drawer pulls and a garden tool drawer pull that I screwed into the board making sure that they were not evenly spaced.
  • I wanted a random loose almost thrown together look
  • a rustic sign is the end result.
  • The black trim in the picture is only for the image to help it pop
Now for the big job of painting my vintage pantry cupboard.
  • I removed the doors
  • filled most of the random screw holes from years of use
  • sanded it well using my most loved palm sander
  • painted the complete cupboard the deep salmon color
  • put on a coat of crackle medium
  • after the crackle was dry, a coat of soft tan



I then took some putty mix and a stencil for aspen leaves and added a row of them down each side of the cupboard. They took more than 24 hours to dry! I then coated them with copper glaze with dark stain and then a dry brush of the same color of the cupboard's top coat.





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We blog about our rural area in the Pacific Northwest . This blog is all about my life and the places where my mind wonders from day to day. Have fun reading and looking at pictures. We welcome comments.

Be sure to watch, just above this blurb, my husband, Jim, using his 10 foot hands-free electric fishing kayak

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Be sure to check out the separate blog to find out about our electric kayak, Kingfisher 10! You can find the blog at http://electrickayakkingfisher-10.blogspot.com . You can also read the features list on this kayak and purchase building plans and building kits at www.winchuckriverstore.com .

About Me

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We moved to our current home on the Wild River Coast of Southern Oregon from San Jose, CA. Our family consist of Jim and Karen, two dogs and two cats. Karen's passion is gardening. Jim's obsession is building electric powered fishing kayaks and fishing.