mooretrees journal

Where are you and where are you going?
mooretrees
Posts: 409
Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2019 1:21 pm

Re: mooretrees journal

Post by mooretrees »

Ha, challenge accepted!

ertyu
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Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2016 2:31 am

Re: mooretrees journal

Post by ertyu »

Personally, I am not a bitterness supertaster (which is why I happily mainline black coffee), but my mother who is swears by this method of preparing eggplant. Happy cooking!

NewBlood
Posts: 23
Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2020 3:45 pm

Re: mooretrees journal

Post by NewBlood »

@mooretrees, my Romanian friend taught me a great eggplant recipe:

Bake on a pan basically until they explode. At 400F, about 50 mins.
Then you take them out, you peal them. You let them cool down, and drain if they are watery. If they are very soft, just mash them in a bowl with a wooden spoon. Otherwise use a blender for a bit. When it's mushy enough (the texture of a spread), add olive oil (you can adjust the quantity to your taste), salt and a bit of lemon juice. To finish you can add either very finely chopped onion or pressed garlic.

It's just great as an appetizer on bread.

mooretrees
Posts: 409
Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2019 1:21 pm

Re: mooretrees journal

Post by mooretrees »

NewBlood wrote:
Wed Aug 26, 2020 12:01 pm
@mooretrees, my Romanian friend taught me a great eggplant recipe:

Bake on a pan basically until they explode. At 400F, about 50 mins.
Then you take them out, you peal them. You let them cool down, and drain if they are watery. If they are very soft, just mash them in a bowl with a wooden spoon. Otherwise use a blender for a bit. When it's mushy enough (the texture of a spread), add olive oil (you can adjust the quantity to your taste), salt and a bit of lemon juice. To finish you can add either very finely chopped onion or pressed garlic.

It's just great as an appetizer on bread.

Wonderful, making this tonight with the last of the homemade bread. Sounds amazing, thanks!

NewBlood
Posts: 23
Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2020 3:45 pm

Re: mooretrees journal

Post by NewBlood »

Hope you like it! It's very healthy and cheap anyway 😁

Cheepnis
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Re: mooretrees journal

Post by Cheepnis »

I think you unwittingly flashed an ERE bat-signal, mooretrees, for I too come presenting cooking recs!

Just wanted to say that I think BudgetBytes is a great website for easy/medium difficulty recipes that are easy to bulk. I've been following Beth since BudgetBytes was a wordpress blog. My GF and I joke that she's my second GF since I just refer to what I'm making as a "Beth recipe" or "Beth inspired".

One great meal-planning strategy I learned from her is to get good at just a couple base recipes you make in bulk and then use in other subsidiary recipes. Being able to make a killer red sauce is half the battle for most Italian dishes for example. And it freezes well! Pinto beans, fried rices, or carnitas are other examples of good versatile base recipes.

Viktor K
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Re: mooretrees journal

Post by Viktor K »

mooretrees wrote:
Fri Aug 14, 2020 12:06 am
realizing that while I spend a lot of time thinking about money and reading the forum, our lives have only changed
...marginally in real world.

Relation to COVID?

mooretrees
Posts: 409
Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2019 1:21 pm

Re: mooretrees journal

Post by mooretrees »

@Viktor K, that quote was really about how we haven't made significant changes to reduce waste and learn to solve problems without money since I've stumbled upon ERE. For me, COVID has dramatically reduced my social life. And we're not going to send out son to preschool this fall. For my DH, life is the same.

@cheepnis I totally go to budgetbytes when I'm needing inspiration. What I'm trying to do now is learn the basics of cooking so I can make something good with whatever is on hand. I make most meals without a recipe, but they are mediocre. If I can learn some fundamentals about cooking then I could have more options when cooking. Or at least make something that tastes better.

I've also realized that we cook the same things day in and day out. Now that we're bursting with veggies here, I'm trying to expand my dinner options to use what we've got. I've read for years that it's cheaper to eat in season, but I haven't really practiced that.

The book that prompted this cooking interest is Salt, Fat, Acid, and Heat. One of the jobs the author had at a famous restaurant was to take stock of what they had. So, last night I crouched down in front of the fridge to do the same. Somehow the fridge is bursting right now. Turns out, tonight will be a 'must-go' night. That's what we call leftovers in our family.

Biscuits and Gravy
Posts: 59
Joined: Thu Aug 06, 2020 1:38 pm

Re: mooretrees journal

Post by Biscuits and Gravy »

+1 Budget Bytes! Love that lady. I’ve found recently that great cooking comes down to great sauces, and different sauces make the same ingredients into entirely different meals. A lot of my meals are just tossing whatever veggies we have into a skillet and mixing it up by doing different sauces. If someone has a good rec for a book on sauces I’m all ears.

Good job on the homemade bread, Mooretrees! I take one look at the time to proof on bread recipes and I’m like f*ck that, kids, who wants some wonderbread?

horsewoman
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Joined: Fri Jun 07, 2019 4:11 am

Re: mooretrees journal

Post by horsewoman »

We are having baked veggies twice a week these days. Just cut and throw whatever needs to be eaten on a oiled baking tray, brush some more oil on it, ad liberally salt, pepper and herbs and put it in the oven for 45 minutes. So delicious!

mooretrees
Posts: 409
Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2019 1:21 pm

Re: mooretrees journal

Post by mooretrees »

Haven't made much progress on learning about cooking, but appreciate all of the veggie ideas. I am convinced that pre-salting my 'wet' veggies before roasting is making all the difference between eating a soggy mess and eating a nicely browned, crunchy delicious meal.

My sister came to visit for two nights. If we get sick from her (or get her sick), then we'll deserve it. If we don't get sick, then we got lucky. She was really motivated to help me finish some projects. Yesterday she and I put together a 10' x 3' raised bed in the backyard. It was our first real building experience. DH had shown me how to use a chop saw a few weeks ago, so I'd already cut all the wood. DH provided important guidance, but we put it all together. Now we have two large raised beds in the back yard. The first bed DH built, and it's clearly the better of the two. But, ours is holding together and I'll be planting some fall crops in the next few days. The first bed has two rows of kale already growing and looking very kale-like.

The other project was dealing with our one apple tree's harvest. We haven't managed it at all in years past, but this year we've dried a lot of apples already-that fruit is already gone. Now I've got about 19 pounds of cut apples in the freezer ready to dehydrate when I can borrow a dehydrator. There are more apples higher up on the tree and a pear in the front yard that is starting to produce. Mostly, I'm just happy we've made a decent sized addition to the food stores with something we've grown. I'd like to can the pears but am not sure about how to manage them as they're ripening at different rates. Maybe I'll try and store some in the cooler basement so a large number will be ready at the same time?

DH has switched projects from the school bus to building a roof rack for our car. We're planning a week long camping trip and it will be much more comfortable if the roof rack can handle some of the camp supplies. He's going to try and make what he calls the 'poor man's fiberglass' out of sheets and wood glue. The box is built, the fiberglass is to water proof it. He built it so it can handle skis, that's going to be awesome come ski season. So far he's only had to buy some hinges and screws for this project, maybe a sheet or two from the second hand store tomorrow.

I can see that he's also researching building a camp box. We'll see if he can pull it off as I work a lot right before our trip.

Seems like part time life will happen after October. My boss won't post the position until the fellow retires. And the October schedule has to be up soon. It's good and bad that I'll work full time a month longer. Good money wise. Bad health wise. I'm tired.

@horsewoman, what kinds of herbs are you using? I'm not fluent in herbs, so I default to s/p primarily.

horsewoman
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Re: mooretrees journal

Post by horsewoman »

I'm pretty traditional with herbs, actually. In my "herb bath tub" I grow basilicum, parsley, oregano, rosemary, chive and chinese chive (which tastes like garlic).
Whatever needs to be cropped gets into the veggies. Sometimes I finely chop everything and put it into the oil to coat the veggies with a silicone brush, at other times I simply sprinkle the herbs onto the veggies. Either way tastes good.

Pears are tricky, I have the same problem with preserving them.
so far we have been eating most of them straight away. I made blackberry jelly and added 1/4 pureed pears, that turned out well (but ultimately used up only 4 pears :lol:).

You could also preserve the pears in mason jars, with sugar water. I like to preserve small amounts that way, since it is easy to prepare the right amount of sugar water, and pop the jars into the oven on a small tray when baking something else.

mooretrees
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Re: mooretrees journal

Post by mooretrees »

horsewoman wrote:
Fri Sep 04, 2020 2:19 am

You could also preserve the pears in mason jars, with sugar water. I like to preserve small amounts that way, since it is easy to prepare the right amount of sugar water, and pop the jars into the oven on a small tray when baking something else.
Is this a different version of canning? I'm used to water bath canning, so this is new to me.

I think you're right, we'll likely eat most of the fresh. Just need to keep up with collecting them. I'm going to spread a tarp out under the tree to make it easier to be on top of the ones that fall.

horsewoman
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Re: mooretrees journal

Post by horsewoman »

It is called "oven canning" Google informs me.
https://morningchores.com/oven-canning/

I like it because I can just pop a few glasses on a smaller baking tray into the oven with a loaf of bread or veggies or whatever!

horsewoman
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Re: mooretrees journal

Post by horsewoman »

Huh, I was just googling how to can carrots and came upon this site about oven canning. Apparently it is not safe. I definitely fall into the "my MIL has done it for years and nothing happened" camp but I don't want to give out bad info, so proceed at your own risk:
https://www.healthycanning.com/oven-canning/

mooretrees
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Re: mooretrees journal

Post by mooretrees »

Thanks. I checked it out earlier and saw it wasn’t recommended by some national food safety groups. wish it were safer as it seemed so easy.

mooretrees
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Re: mooretrees journal

Post by mooretrees »

We're heading out to Zion National Park tomorrow. I have 10 days off. We'd thought of taking a mellow trip down to SE OR, but the fires are just too much. Too much smoke. My throat is sore.

DH finished our "Beverly Hillbilly" roof rack. That's what my friend called it anyway. Here's a few photos of it. He didn't have time to do the 'poor man's fiberglass.' Hope it doesn't rain on us!
From the front of the car with it open:
Image2694A36D-AFD5-4301-BD55-AB708D1D1726 by , on Flickr

Side view (also can see the caboose raise in the background):

ImageE67D9768-0977-4E50-89E8-E895A466CEA1 by , on Flickr

Caboose Raise:

Before facing the rear:
Image2FEA019D-5CC7-4542-984D-47F8BEB32899 by , on Flickr

During the lift:
Image7FF19735-1935-4A69-8790-0AC542257B97 by Meghan Moore, on Flickr

After, facing front of bus:
Image4D64CFA9-CB3E-45E0-B600-9C4630E1AFDB by , on Flickr

I'm going off line during this vacation. I need a digital break. Take care all, talk in a week or so.

mooretrees
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Re: mooretrees journal

Post by mooretrees »

Back from our epic road trip adventure. Went to Bryce Canyon and Zion Nat'l Park for about 8 days. Camped for most of it in free spots and hiked, watched birds, caught frogs in a stream (they really were there!), avoided people, had a meltdown about covid, and drove a lot. I couldn't help thinking about the irony of escaping in a car the bad smoke caused by forest fires caused by climate change....Maybe irony is not correct, maybe sad is a better word.

I'm struggling with the reality of starting to live in two worlds. One is the 'normal' world with careers, homes, investments, consumption, etc. The other is the dark age world, the peak oil world that I don't know exactly how to prepare for. And I'm trying to succeed in both worlds. While I don't know exactly how to prepare for the peak oil/collapse world, I keep returning to ERE for solace. I can live in both if I push forward on learning about skills, living with less waste and focusing on pursuing a high quality of life over a large pile of money or goods.

I think the fires out West really started my grieving process for how terribly we've treated our home. I thought a lot on my trip about how to get our little family ready/better prepared for the changes ahead. I'm 44 now, and while I do think my quality of life will be negatively impacted by climate change, I really feel motivated to teach our son real skills and do what we can to get him set up to have a good life. I realize this is a classic example of only focusing on those around me, but I'm early in this journey.

I'm reading Pema Chondron's How To Meditate in the mornings and trying to do 10-20 minutes of meditation a day. Boy is it crazy how wild my mind is. I'm trying to just establish a practice without reading too much into how upsetting it is that I'm an adult who has very little awareness of her own mind.

Both DH and I basically turned our phones off, except for limited directions or searching for campsite/park information, for our trip. I could tell I was losing my ability to focus and control my phone/computer usage. It was good, and I'm thinking of trying a digital sabbath or something similar. I'm tired, I need to update August spending and get Sept money tracking caught up. Maybe this weekend with a glass of wine and some good music.

classical_Liberal
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Re: mooretrees journal

Post by classical_Liberal »

Sounds like a good road trip! I'm itching for one, but trying to hold off because the weather is still holding up in the great white north.

I rarely comment about kids, because I feel it's not my place and I have little experience of my own. However, I really think that anyone here who is focused on a sustainable ERE lifestyle is giving their kid(s) so much grounding for success in whatever world they find themself(ves) in. So much more than the Ivy league edu/connections everyone else seems so focused on. Be sad, but don't let it define you, no one can ever take away the trip you just had.

Hristo Botev
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Re: mooretrees journal

Post by Hristo Botev »

mooretrees wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 10:57 pm
I'm struggling with the reality of starting to live in two worlds. One is the 'normal' world with careers, homes, investments, consumption, etc. The other is the dark age world, the peak oil world that I don't know exactly how to prepare for. And I'm trying to succeed in both worlds. While I don't know exactly how to prepare for the peak oil/collapse world, I keep returning to ERE for solace. I can live in both if I push forward on learning about skills, living with less waste and focusing on pursuing a high quality of life over a large pile of money or goods.
Well, I certainly picked the write journal entry to read to start my day. Thank you for this; it's beautiful and it put me at peace.

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