Weekend in Review

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How was your weekend? Last week was very hectic for me and I was really looking forward to some time off and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of my weekend.
We’ve made great strides with Grove House. The architectural design and plans are finished and into plan check with the county. Yay! Those aren’t the blueprints above (they don’t use this type anymore) but I will be sharing the real plans and my design process & inspiration very soon.

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Saturday morning called for a solo trip to the farmers market. It was quiet, as I went early to avoid the crowds, and the produce was positively beautiful. My favorite farmer was trimming the lettuce ends and gave me a giant bag for my chickens.

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 I came home very inspired by the market and have a couple recipes to share with you this week. I also started making my homemade Vanilla Extract for gifts this Christmas. It takes 4-6 months (or longer) to make really good vanilla so I set to splitting, scraping and cutting…

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There are lots of recipes available online for making vanilla extract, most are about the same.
I use more beans and cure my vanilla longer compared to many of the recipes. Some call for only 1-2 months of curing and I feel it needs to be longer to create a more syrupy consistency.

I buy these Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Beans. And I’ve also used this brand.

The reason I buy Premium or Grade A instead of Grade B, is I typically don’t use the entire bag for a batch of vanilla and this leaves me with gorgeous beans for other uses such as sugars, baking and ice cream. And they’re good to have on hand when a recipe calls for one.

I also don’t cure the extract directly in the bottles I’m going to gift. This is because you have to strain everything before use and I’d rather strain one large bottle as opposed to 12 little ones.

You’ll have to let me know if you make extract and share any of your tips in the comments!
Have a great Monday everyone!

Comments

  1. Yay! I can’t wait to see what kind of house you have planned…are you downsizing? or will it be bigger? whatever it is it will be gorgeous amoung those orange trees! It is 20 degrees in Minnesota today with a 5 degree wind chill…I enjoyed all the lovelies on your site! looking forward to Junk bonanza to help with the winter blahs…will you be there this time? take care, Gail