Friday, January 23, 2009

The Newest Member to our Farm

Assalam alykom:

We now have a male sheep for our little farm. We have 1 white female hair sheep and 1 female wool sheep. We just got this little guy who is a hair sheep. We are going to slaughter the wool sheep for meat and keep our herd all hair sheep. They will be much easier to take care of in the summer because you do not have to clip the wool. Our goats still have not had their kids. We will be so excited when they do. Every day we go and feed them and think that they had them. I will be posting the pictures as soon as they arrive.

My Pita Bread

Assalam alykom:
Well, Pita bread is an essential staple to an Arabic household, and since the nearest Arabic store is 2 hours away, I needed to learn how to make my own. I have a bread machine and this makes it a little quicker and a lot easier. Here is the recipe I use. I got it off the Internet.
*3 1/2 cups of white bread flour. I also made brown pita bread. I made it with half brown flour and half white bread flour.
*1 1/2 cups of warm water
* 1 teaspoon of salt
*1 teaspoon of sugar
*1 teaspoon of olive oil
*2 1/4 teaspoon of yeast
I put all of the ingredients in my bread machine on the dough cycle. This cycle mixes it, kneads it and rises it one time. Once it is finished, I take it out on a floured surface. I then divide it into 8 small balls. I let these balls rise for about a half an hour. They will rise a little and then I will roll each one out. The oven must be very hot. I put it on about 500 to 525. I have an iron skillet inside the oven getting hot. I place each bread one at time to cook. It only takes about 1 minute or two. You have to watch it. The puff right up and look real nice. I let them coll and they taste really wonderful. Because I do not add any preservatives like in the stores, they are fresh for about a day or two at most. I tried making a whole bunch and freezing them, but they where not so fresh. Now, I just make a batch every other day and we always have fresh bread.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Yougart Balls

Assalam alykom:

Well, with the closest Arabic market being two hours away, you need to either stock up or make your own. At first, I stocked up. The stock is gone and now I need to make my own. I make my own yogurt and I can do many things with it. This is how I make my own yogurt:

1. You bring milk or cream or half/half to a boil. If you use cream, it will be very rich and tasty.

2. Let the boil milk come to room temperature. I do this by sticking my finger in it and counting to ten. If I can tolerate the heat up to ten it is good.

3. Once it is room temperature, add store bought plain yogurt. I use Dannon or Stoney farms. For a small pot , I use 1/2 the tub of yogurt. Stir in the yogurt, put a lid on it and wrap it in a towel. Keep it covered for at least 24 hours. You can keep it covered for up to three days. The longer you leave it the more sour it becomes.

4. Once the yogurt has set and finished, I start my balls. I drain the yogurt in a cloth or paper towels for at least 2 days.

5. Once it is drained and of clay consistency, I roll them into balls and set them on paper towels. I leave them for another day.

6. Once they are dried a little, I put them in a jar of olive oil.

It takes a while to make, but they are worth it. They are very tasty for breakfast with a hot cup of tea and pita bread. I just started making my own pita bread too. When I have a chance I will load up the pictures.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Our Snow Man

Assalam alykom:
Here is our first snowman! The kids had a bunch of fun making him