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Caramel Apple Rolls

Months ago it was Missy's dishes day and Ryan made a deal with her. He said, "I'll do you dishes for you if you make me some cinnamon rolls!" So she made the deal with him but since part of the deal wasn't to make them that night she put it off.

I think Ryan expected them within the next day or so but being the busy teen that she is......they didn't come and they didn't come. I think Miss was hoping Dad had forgot about it all.

But then just a week or so ago he started bringing it up again! Missy decided she better deliver on her part of the deal. Since caramel apple is just part of the season right now I told her I would help he make a different kind of cinnamon roll.

So this past Monday afternoon we put these together and they were such a fun twist on the traditional cinnamon roll we thought we would share! My biggest problem was the fact that they where so sweet it actually made me tired to eat them and although I wanted more one was all my body wanted or actually I think it maybe was mad at me for eating a whole one. It's funny how we have slowly gone from healthified treats a few times a week to one or two times a week to once or twice a month.

It's been a really slow gradual process but even the kids just don't really crave the sweets. A piece of fruit is usually ample. I quit sweetening our smoothies with anything but fruit a long time ago. Honestly I have been surprised at how my kids will drink up a very unsweet smoothie without a complaint. It's been a process but when it comes to sweets less is more......but your family will love to splurge on these for a Halloween treat especially if they aren't going to eat all that crazy candy.


Caramel Apple Rolls
whole grain bread dough for 1 loaf
4-5 large apples, peeled and chopped
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup Sucanat
1 batch caramel sauce

For the bread we used The Best Yet Whole Wheat Bread Recipe and make dinner rolls out of the rest of the dough.

With one loaf worth of dough, roll out into a rectangle about the size of an average cookie sheet. Spread the coconut oil on top of the dough then sprinkle on the Sucanat and the apple. Roll from the long way just like you would cinnamon rolls. Slice into about 1 inch rolls I like to use thread or floss for this. Then place just touching on a cookie sheet. Place in a warm spot to raise until about double. Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes or until nice and golden brown.

While the rolls are rising whip up a batch of caramel sauce. When rolls are done baking you can drizzle immediately with the caramel sauce or you can serve them up individually on plate and then drizzle with the sauce.

My Weekly Meal Plan


I finished canning all the rest of our tomatoes by making another big batch of Spaghetti Sauce. I saved just enough to eat fresh for a few more weeks then that will be it for the tomatoes. It's always so sad to see the end of our tomato harvest. But we really can't complain because all our tomatoes ripened before it got too cold and I was able to do all the canning I needed to do with what we grew.....That's a first for us! We usually get a few bushels from extended family or gardening friends because we just couldn't produce enough on our own.

I think practice, adding good compost and growing our tomatoes like shown here is making a huge difference. Oh and LOTS of praying over the garden! ;)

All that's left in the garden are a few heads of cabbage that we are quickly using up. Some chard that we have been loving putting in soups and other dishes like stuffed squash. (recipe coming!) And then there is our carrots and beets. I will probably make some carrot butter with some carrots and save the rest for easting fresh. I am planning on freezing and pickling the beets.

It's so fun to see all our jars full of yummy food and our shelves nearly full would you like to see my shelves of canned foods in my food storage room?!

You are looking at dried pears, apples, apple pie filling, apple and pear butter and sauce barley soup, peach jam, spaghetti sauce, pickles, salsa, salsa verde, more spaghetti sauce, pickled beets and bread and butter pickles.

It's so fun to see the shelves fill up with yummy homemade food that we can enjoy all year long! If you would like to know what other things we like to keep in our food storage you can get my FREE food storage ebook when you sign up for my short and infrequent newsletter.

In other news this week Ryan took the boys along with their scout troops to Zion National Park on Friday night where they camped and then hiked the East Rim on Saturday. It sounded like they had a wonderful time!

The girls and I enjoyed some girl time together......Charly was super excited to watch "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" since she had recently read the book. We watched the old movie together she thought it was lots of fun and decided to read the book again the next day......such a fun little girl!



My Weekly Meal Plan

Monday: 
Spaghetti

Tuesday:
Pizza

Wednesday:
Creamy Cauliflower Sandwiches

Thursday:
Quinoa Chili

Friday:
Dinner in a Pumpkin (we are actually going to try some sort of coconut curry soup in a pumpkin this year but the recipe is still in my head and we are not sure yet how it will taste. ;) We are thinking of making some doughnuts too probably ones similar to these but different ;) I haven't decided yet.

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday:
Taco Sundays

Mountain Rose Herbs. A herbs, health and harmony c
Mountain Rose Herbs is where I get all my bulk herbs that I haven't grown myself, along with other oils, beeswax, jars and things to make my herbal remedies! Don't forget to buy dried elderberries while you are there so you can make this elderberry syrup. We this it's super to take during cold and flu season!

No Knead Sourdough Artisan Bread

So before I get to the recipe I want to be sure to share with you where I learned about making this type of bread and then share a little about why I love this recipe so much.

Traditional Cooking School

I know I have talked about GNOWFGLINS before and that I have learned so much being a member. Wardee the founder is my go to source for all things fermented and sourdough! Did you know that she recently changed the name to Traditional Cooking School by GNOWFGLINS? I guess some people got a little confused as to what the name was all about and the new name just makes it easier. If you are curious to know what GNOWFGLINS means just click here and scroll down.

So far my very favorite class of the ones that I have gone through is the Sourdough Class. It's also the one that I keep going back to and trying recipes from. It has inspired me to do much more then just make bread. This past Summer we were doing some experimenting and tried out this recipe in the dutch oven I instantly grew very fond of making bread this way and we not only made it multiply times in the dutch oven cooking outdoors while camping or when we didn't want to heat up the kitchen.....but we have also made it in the oven and I plan to make it often all winter long.



What I love most is how simple it is to make. All it takes is thinking ahead just a little. The day before I want to make it I get out my start from the fridge and build it up throughout the day so have have at least 2 cups. (1 1/2 for the recipe and 1/2 to put back in the fridge for other things) Then that evening I quickly mix together the ingredients in a large bowl and put it in the fridge for the night. The next day as soon as I'm ready to bake the bread I pull it out of the fridge and divide it into the two loaves and throw it in the oven to bake. It may sound time consuming but all together it's only about 10 minutes of my time the rest is just the sourdough doing it's own thing and of course the bake time.

Just trust me......try it and you will think that it is the easiest bread you have ever made. In the class they also showed how you can use what they called the bucket method and keep the dough perpetually going so you always have bread dough in your fridge ready to use at a moments notice. Doing it that way though does require that you use and feed the dough at least every three days. Not something I wanted to do in the summer but may consider it this winter. We will see how it goes.

Sourdough A-Z

There were also so many ideas shared of what you could do with the dough and the video class demonstrated how to make each one and of course recipes where provided! Now some of you may not have the time or money right now to take the entire class so you will want to check out Wardee's Sourdough ebook.....It contains all of the recipes from the class including how to make your own start, how to care for it and many more details about sourdough! There are even a few bonus videos that come with the purchase of the ebook so it's a great option!

Now how about that recipe!















No Knead Artisan Sourdough Bread
3 cups water
1 1/2 Tablespoons Real Salt
1 1/2 cups sourdough starter
6-8 cups whole wheat or spelt flour

At least 8 to 10 hours before baking stir together all ingredients in a large bowl until just combined. Adjust the amount of flour so you have a wet but not too wet dough. I like mine to be a little wet and sticky but firm. Cover and place in fridge for 8-10 hours or overnight. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Take dough out of the fridge and sprinkle the top with a little flour. Divide dough into two large round loaves or whatever shapes and sizes you want. I bake mine in two round bakers (similar to round cake pans 9-10") I also use parchment paper to line the pans but you can choose to oil your pans if you want. Using a large knife make 2 or 3 slices in the top the the dough then place in the preheated oven. (Yep I don't even wait for it to rise it seems to rise up instead of out if I get it right in the oven while the dough is still cold) Bake for 25-40 minutes until nice and dark golden brown. Try to let cool a bit before slicing ( I know it's hard but the very center is still baking a bit as it cools.)

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you want a thicker more chewy traditional type crust....take a spray bottle with water and spray the bread a few times while cooking. I like the crust this way and usually do this spraying the dough three or for times throughout baking.

My Weekly Meal Plan


I really do have new recipes that I want to post and I hope to get some of them posted soon. Right now I'm spending a lot of my time in the kitchen finishing up preserving our wonderful harvest or outside enjoying nice Fall weather. Thanks for being patient with me!

We had a fun more on the go time last week. I did manage to make a couple batches of Salsa, I tried 2 different recipes both are totally edible but this recipe is still our favorite.


I did find great way to use up bunches of our cherry, grape and pear tomatoes that needed using up quickly. I roasted them in the oven and then blended them up to make a roasted type salsa. The recipe has potential but will need more work before it can be posted.


The kids got to go spend some time this week with their cousins and grandparents. They had lots of fun some of them went to a children's museum and some went skating from the sound of it lots of fun was had by all!


Ryan and I made it down to my 20 year high school reunion. It was so much fun to see many of the people that I spent a good part of my childhood with and catching up on lost time. Wow how time flies! But it is so funny how time seems to melt away when you take time to get together. I only wish there had been more time to spend. ;)


Right now I have a big crock pot of pinto beans cooking that will be part of dinner tonight and some lunches and dinners during the week. It will kind of be a taco week unless we get tired of it and decide to freeze some of the beans. ;)

My Weekly Meal Plan

Monday:
Taco Sundays

Tuesday:
Tacos

Wednesday:
Pinto Bean Salad

Thursday:
Crock Pot Sloppy Joes

Friday:
Taco Soup

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday:
Crock Pot Ratatouille

My Weekly Meal Plan



Just thought I would share a couple things that maybe some of you may be interested in before I share my weekly meal plan!

First starting today and going all week is the Wellness Family Summit......Registration is free and there looks like a great line-up of speakers I have already listened to a couple today and learned a few things a taken some notes. Excited to learn more! (Please note that even though I recommend you check out this summit please don't assume that it means that I totally agree with everything being presented.)

https://pd199.isrefer.com/go/summitreg/ryandtam/

Also on sale until this Friday October 17th is the Spa Party Planning Package! I have reviewed all that is included and I love the idea of getting the party license of 20 copies of the recipe books so you not only have a fun spa party with your friends but you get to share with them all the fun natural skin care recipes so they can be a little crunchy like you!


Fresh Facials and Scrumptious Scrubs

These days I don't think we spend enough time with the actual people that are around us. With all the social media and things I think we forget to spend time face to face with people. Also we don't seem to take much if any time for ourselves these days.....This is a great way to take care of both of these problems in a super fun relaxed way and even help those around you get to know you and your crunchy wholesome side just a little more.

I'm finding most people are pretty open and interested to healthier options nowadays especially if it's simple, more affordable and healthier! A Spa Party might just be the best least pressure way to introduce your friends to a healthier way of life.

 
My Weekly Meal Plan

Monday:
Summer Squash Patties

Tuesday:
Sweet Potato and Mango Tacos

Wednesday:
Garden Skillet

Thursday:
Pizza Casserole

Friday:
Artichoke Tomato Alfredo

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday: Lentil Soup


Sale ends Thursday the 16th on my all time favorite dehydrator!


Spaghetti Sauce, Humungo Batch

My Mom and Sister came up with this recipe years ago and we have loved it ever since. It is by far our families favorite spaghetti sauce. Because we like it so much I'm always sure to bottle some each year when the tomatoes are ready to harvest. 

Since I always want to make more than the three quarts the original recipe makes I would always have to double or more the recipe but then found I was having to adjust certain ingredients especially when at least quadrupling the recipe.



So after playing with the recipe a few years in a row and taking lots of notes I think this is my favorite version for making a great big humungo batch that makes about 14 quarts sometimes a little more or less. That's the beauty of homemade.

Note that some years tomatoes are sweeter or juicier than other times don't be afraid to taste before you place the sauce in the bottles and adjust say the salt, Sucanat or vinegar. Also note that I like plenty of fennel and oregano and I'm not afraid to use lots of herbs......I LOVE HERBS! But if you don't love them like I do maybe half the amount and work up from there.



Bottled Homemade Spaghetti Sauce Humungo Batch
6 cups chopped onion
2 cups chopped green bell pepper
10 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup olive oil
16-20 pounds tomatoes, scalded and peeled
48 oz. tomato paste
3/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup Sucanat
4 heaping Tablespoons Broth Powder
1/2 cup oregano
2 Tablespoons basil
1/2 cup ground fennel
3 Tablespoons Real Salt
2 teaspoons white pepper
2-5 cups water (optional)

In very large pot (at least 15 quart pot) lightly saute onion, peppers, garlic in olive oil. Take peeled tomatoes and either squish with clean hands or chop with a knife. Add them and the rest of the ingredients to the pot. Depending on the type of tomatoes you use and how juicy they are will depend on how much water if any you want to add. When I use Roma Tomatoes I will use a cup or two of water because Roma's don't have as much juice. You can also cook it down if you think it is too thin to be spaghetti sauce.

Once sauce is simmering and at the thickness you want. Place sauce into clean hot canning jars (I just run mine through the dishwasher with heat dry so they are good and hot.) Clean rim and put lids and rings on tight. Water bath can for boiling 30-40 minutes depending on your elevation. Makes about 14 quarts.



My all time favorite food dehydrator is on sale!
When I still have tomatoes that need using I love to slice up a batch a put them in the dehydrator. Voila simple "sun"dried tomatoes. Great for soups or raw sauces or thickening sauces or many things I haven't yet thought of. ;) 

My Weekly Meal Plan

Spa Pamper Party Package

Before I tell you about my week and my meal plan I quickly want to share this very fun idea to have a natural spa party. I think it would be so fun to have one of these! I'll share a bit more about it soon or you can just go to the site and learn more!

Tomatoes, Peppers, Beans Oh My

Last week we noticed that there was one night that temperatures were going to drop but then they were going to come back up for at least a week or more so we decided to cover some of the less cold loving plants like the tomatoes, peppers and a few other things.

We also picked everything that was ripe or nearly ripe. I'm still amazed at how much bounty our small garden has produced this year. It makes me very hopeful for years to come and our plans of expanding it in the future!

It can be a bit of work but it's the good healthy kind of work and when it does well it saves us bunches on our grocery bill. Mine has been cut by more than half the last 3 months and with everything I'm putting on the shelves it will save us quite a bit throughout the year too!


Big Batch of Speghetti Sauce
This week I canned a big batch of spaghetti sauce. This recipe only makes about 3 quarts but I will post my humungo batch recipe ASAP. It's by far our favorite spaghetti sauce. We are always sad when we use the last bottle because it's best with our garden tomatoes although in a pinch canned diced tomatoes will work.


Me with my girls
We spent some of the weekend at my parent's house visiting them and my grandma. We also enjoyed watching General Conference while we were there.

Enchilada Casserole


My Weekly Meal Plan

Monday:
Orange Veggie Stir Fry

Tuesday:
Easy Enchilada Casserole

Wednesday:
Smoky Black Bean Beet Burgers

Thursday:
Garden Skillet

Friday:
Crock Pot Ratatouille

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday:
Lentil Soup


My Weekly Meal Plan

This past week we have been just taking in a savoring all the fall we can get! This week was full of harvesting, family time, eat some of the harvest, sharing some of the harvest and preserving some of the harvest. Along with a few other fun details. ;)

Flowers from the herb garden
We picked a few flowers from my herb garden to enjoy and a nice little very humble centerpiece for the table this week. Missy called it redneck but I preferred to call it a Little House on the Prairie arrangement. ;)  Either way we enjoyed it!


I heart Homeschooling
The week started off with our Pajamarama and then lots and lots of canning. I did a triple batch of salsa this week! It's so fun to see those empty jars that have been hanging out in the food storage room almost all full now!

Large Tomato Harvest
I can't believe how well the garden has done. I dare say that this year is the best garden we have ever had.....It has been such a blessing. And the cool thing is that it is all done well for the most part. I have been able to use all our own produce for my canning of salsa, soup and things this year. I think that's a first I usually end up having to go buy a few peppers or onions or things because we don't have enough but not this year. It has been awesome!


Tasty Garden Tomatoes
And what's even better is that even after a triple batch of salsa I still think I will be able to make another large batch of barley soup and maybe even some spaghetti sauce. We are watching the weather and may need to cover the tomatoes this week just so the last of the green ones can be sure to ripen. We still think this is the best way to grow bunches of tomatoes, especially when you have a short season like we do here.

I also tried out a couple different kinds of salsa verde this week and bottled about 15 pints. We planted one tomatillo plant this year and we will be able to make all the green salsa we want and plenty of this! We also dried a bunch of our jalapenos so I can make some more jalapeno powder.

All in all it was a great week I went with all my boys to a Court of Honor on Thursday......took the camera but left the memory card in the computer. :( Curt got his first class and some merit badges. Then on Saturday I went with my Girls to watch the General Women's meeting.....it was so fun to be able to have both my daughters we me.

This week I have a few days before more harvesting and preserving needs to happen so in my down time I'm trying to clean house a bit cause boy does it need it! As usual we are keeping dinner SIMPLE!

A yummy way to use eggplant!


My Weekly Meal Plan

Monday:
Vegetable Thai Curry (still working on this and the garlic sauce when I have a recipes perfected they will be  huge favorites!)

Tuesday:
Fajitas (with our own peppers, onions, cabbage and zucchini right from our garden!)

Wednesday:
Split Pea Soup

Thursday:
Pan Fried Eggplant with Marinara Sauce (yep there are even a few eggplants in the garden ;)

Friday:
Quinoa Chili, vegetable garden style

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday:
Crock Pot Sloppy Joes


Spa Pamper Party Package

Quinoa Chili, vegetable garden style


On Saturday I was looking through the fridge to see what leftovers would work for dinner. I noticed that we had lots of cooked quinoa and black beans in the fridge and lots of garden veggies needing to be used.

I have tried a few versions of Quinoa Chili where you add the uncooked quinoa. My experience has been that either the quinoa wasn't all the way cooked and a bit crunchy or that it had cooked so long (when I tried it in the crock pot) that it was basically mush.

So I had been thinking about just adding it precooked right at the end.....when I saw the leftovers in my fridge I knew it was a good time to give it a try. When my teenage boy and husband had 4 or more helpings and the rest of us ate it up too I figured I had better hurry and write it down before I forgot what I did.

For sure a recipe we will be making a lot when cold weather sets in. A great way to use up those leftovers!



Quinoa Chili, garden vegetable style
1 Tablespoon coconut or olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 anaheim and/or jalapeno pepper, chopped
1 large carrot, grated or sliced
1 small zucchini, coarsely chopped (optional)
1 1/2 cups corn
4 cups cooked black beans rinsed and drained
2-3 Tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon Sucanat (optional)
1 cinnamon stick
2-3 teaspoons Real Salt or to taste
pepper to taste
1 can diced tomatoes, or fresh chopped (may need to add more broth)
3 cups vegetable broth (3 cups water with 2 teaspoons Broth Powder)
6 leaves of kale, thinly sliced stems removed
4 cups COOKED quinoa
Juice of 1 lime
Cilantro chopped for garnish (optional)

In a large pot lightly saute onion, peppers and carrots. Add corn, beans and seasonings, vegetable broth and diced tomatoes. Bring to a good simmer stir in the kale and quinoa just until the kale is barely cooked the the quinoa is warm. Stir in the lime juice. Remove the cinnamon stick before serving. Garnish with Cheezy Sauce and cilantro if desired.


My Weekly Meal Plan

Another week of food preservation mostly but we are also getting back into the swing of things with recommitting to be a bit better with our chores and our schedule. September is more my time for renewal and fresh starts more so than New Years.

It was so nice and even with the hubbub of canning and Ryan being gone with work for half the week . I think everyone was much happier and more productive and we even had more time.....rhythm is a good thing.



Missy had her dance this weekend dress hunting was part of the week also it was a little tricky and shopping is not on my list of favorite things to do but it was fairly painless and I thought she look absolutely beautiful!


Food preservation last week consisted of making Barley Soup, Pear Butter and drying LOTS of pears and apples!


Dried Pears
Dried Pears coming out of the dehydrator......better than candy!
I love my Excalibur Dehydrator and this time of year it keeps really busy. My only wish is that I had another one. I have had my eye on a new all stainless steel one for a while and my hope is to have it by next fall. The reason I want another one is because that even though dehydrating food saves me tons of time and space it does take quite a few hours for certain foods to dry and sometimes a day can make all the difference in the readiness of your fruit etc.


Yummy Dried Apples
Apples ready to be dried.
I also save a lot of time dehydrating foods because it is easy to have everyone even little ones help. There is not hot stove and things to worry about. With me and 3 or 4 of the kids it takes us about 20 minutes to do a batch. Of course that doesn't include drying time but the Excalibur does all that work.


Preserving the Harvest

This week I hope to have more tomatoes ripe enough to do some more Salsa and I have some cucumbers ready to do these Bread and Butter Pickles today!


Tonight is our annual family Pajamarama! It's our little family "back to homeschool" party (yeah it's a little later this year than usual). We have a big breakfast for dinner in our pajamas (symbolic of we could "do school" in our P.J.'s if we wanted to the kids usually don't but Mom has been known to at times ;) We have a lesson and talk about our theme for the year then watch a really inspiring movie and just enjoy having fun together.

Menu Planning

My Weekly Meal Plan

Monday:
French Toast Stix, hashbrown, fruit, and we are trying to decide between milkshakes or soft serve for dessert ;)

Tuesday:
Quesadillas 

Wednesday:
Quick and Yummy Stuffed Peppers

Thursday:
Falafel Flatbread Sandwich

Friday:
Taco Sundays

Saturday:
Leftovers

Sunday:
Our Favorite Lentil Soup in the Crock Pot


Bruschetta


One day last year I was at my Mom's and she had just mixed up something that looked like salsa only it tasted different. She said it was Bruschetta and that you have it on toast or crackers. I had heard of Bruschetta and maybe even had some before but not that tasted like this.

I just love the way fresh basil and tomatoes taste together and right then I knew that I was going to have to be sure to plant plenty of basil so I could make some fresh Bruschetta. It's so simple to make and has a yummy Italian flare you could add balsamic vinegar instead of lemon juice which is good. I just like the fresher flavor of the lemon.

And just so you know I have plenty of basil still growing if you need some! ;)



Bruschetta
6-8 large fresh garden tomatoes, chopped
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons lemon juice (or to taste)
8-10 leaves of fresh basil, sliced into thin ribbons
1 teaspoon Kosher Real Salt (to taste)
fresh ground pepper (to taste)

Mix everything together in a bowl. Spoon onto toasted baguettes or sourdough artisan bread.