Sunday, October 26, 2014

Blog moved - update your bookmarks!

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

A Few Rules Of Homesteading, Just In Time...

In my youth, still young to many at 44, I found that I had a drive that was matched by few. Only true people that had the same passion as I did could even keep up with my task. I pride myself on doing more than people expect of me and showing/sharing the fruits of my labor.

Like planting a garden, all the prep work that goes into it, the rewards come later. We live in such a society where people want it, want it now, and if they don't get it... Well you know....

With nearly 10 cords of hardwood split and stacked, my hands are sore, and each day I split a little more. It is a homesteading rule to do things, and I mean all things with pace. A pace makes it sound like I want to put things off or stretch them out over time as if I were lazy. But I assure you, that isn't the case.

I make rules with myself, rules that allow me to do more over a longer period of time without getting burned out to quickly. Sure, when push comes to shove I will double hands down and burn the midnight oil if need be...

So one of the rules I have is to split one wheel barrel or two a night from the second week of August until I have at least 9 cords completed. I split about 6 cords by hand, and the rest I will use a machine. This rule falls to many things here, do a little each day...

There are times when we must demand more from ourselves than normal, but I have learned to do more in each season before the next. It helps so much not to try to do everything that needs to be done in the season. 


Monday, September 22, 2014

Cornbread ( 1830's) Kitchen / Campfire Recipe


  • 3 c.  stone ground corn meal
  • 1 1/2    c.  white flour
  • 1 T. sugar
  • 2 t. baking soda
  • 1/2 t.  salt
  • 2 1/2 T. molasses  or  21/2  T. honey  or 11/4  T. of each 
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 c.  buttermilk
  • 3 T. lard
  • 3  T. veg. oil

While preheating 12 inch cast iron dutch oven to 375 degree (use oven thermometer inside Dutch Oven , remove thermometer before adding batter to oven)
Combine dry ingredients.  Add molasses, oil and buttermilk to beaten eggs.  Add to dry ingredients and mix to combine.
Melt (pig fat) lard in preheated Dutch Oven, add ingredients to dutch oven.  Cover and bake for 30 minutes or until inserted knife comes out clean.

Dutch Oven Cobbler Kitchen / Campfire Recipe


  • 1 box of yellow cake mix
  • 1 cold stick butter cut into cubes
  • 2 cans pie filling
  • 1 1/4 c. chopped or finely diced walnuts

While heating 12 inch cast iron dutch oven to 375 degrees (use oven thermometer inside dutch oven/oven ) Remove from oven before adding ingredients’  Lightly grease dutch oven with cooking spray

Cut cold butter into cake mix and add nuts (optional) and hand blend (cut) the butter into the cake mix until the butter is in small pieces.

Add fruit to bottom of dutch oven.  Spread dry cake mix with cut in butter over top of fruit.
Bake in covered dutch oven for 30 minutes.


Sunday, September 21, 2014

Traditional Buckwheat (no knead)


  • 3/4  cup buckwheat flour (3  1/2 oz)
  • 1  cup unbleached all-purpose flour (5 oz)
  • 2  cups whole wheat flour (9 oz)
  • 2  1/4 t. granulated yeast
  • 1  1/2 t. coarse salt
  • 1/8  cup vital wheat gluten (2 T or .6 oz)
  • 1  3/4 cups lukewarm water

Using glass bowl or cup, dissolve yeast in lukewarm water.  Put buckwheat flour, wheat flour, all-purpose flour and gluten into large plastic mixing bowl, incorporate salt into flour.  Using  a wooden mixing spoon, add water with yeast to flour mixture, making sure everything is uniformly moist.  Dough should be wet and loose enough to conform to shape of container.  Cover with a loose fitting lid.  Allow mixture to rise for approximately 2 hours, depending on room temp and initial water temp.  Longer rising time will not harm the result. 
You can use a portion of the dough anytime after this period.  However, flavor will be best after at least 24 hours of refrigeration.  Any dough not initially used can be refrigerated in same bowl with loose lid for up to 10 days.
To bake a loaf of bread, sprinkle flour on work surface, divide with your hands, a grapefruit size portion of dough, dusting a bit of the flour on the outside of the portion of the dough, not really mixing any of the flour into the dough.  Most of the dusting flour will fall off.  Gently stretch the surface of the dough around to the bottom on all four sides, shaping the dough into a ball.  No kneading required.  The entire process should take no more than 30 to 60 seconds.  Place on parchment paper, cut to size of dutch oven.  Cover loaf with towel and let rise for 40 mins.
 Before placing in heated oven, dust with flour and make 3 slashes, 1/4 inch deep, across the top, using a serrated knife.  (if refrigerated dough is used, allow more resting time before baking).
The method of baking to be addressed here is to use a cast iron dutch oven (10 or 12 inch size).  One of 3 methods can be used for baking.  At home in your kitchen oven; or outside using either charcoal or wood coals.
While dough is rising, preheat dutch oven to approximately 500 degrees.  Use a trivet in bottom of oven, and preheat with lid on.  When temp is reached, carefully place dough (with parchment paper on bottom) in oven and replace lid.  Use insulated glove while doing this.
Bake for 35 minutes at 450 degree.  When using indoor oven, remove lid for last 5 minutes.  Carefully remove loaf from oven and place on cooling rack.  Slice at will.

Stan has been using this recipe for 28 years.... 

Honey Wheat (no knead) Dutch Oven


  • 1  1/3  cups lukewarm water (approximately 100 degrees)
  • 2  1/4 t.  granulated yeast
  • 2  1/4 t.  coarse salt (.6 oz)
  • 1  1/2  cups whole wheat flour (6.75 oz)
  • 1  1/2  cups  all-purpose white flour (7.5 oz)
  • 1/8  cup of vital wheat gluten ( 2T or .6 oz)
  • 1/4  cup honey (2.8 oz)
  • 1/4  cup lard (melted and cooled) (1.6 oz)

Using glass bowl or cup, dissolve yeast in lukewarm water.  Put wheat flour,  all- purpose flour and gluten into large plastic mixing bowl, incorporate salt into flour.  Using a wooden mixing spoon, add water with yeast, honey and melted and cooled lard to flour mixture, making sure everything is uniformly moist.  Dough should be wet and loose enough to conform to shape of container.  Cover with a loose fitting lid.  Allow mixture to rise for approximately 1  1/2  to  2 hours, depending on room temp. and initial water temp.  Longer rising time (even overnite) will not harm the result.
You can use a portion of the dough any time after this period.  Divide in half for 2 loaves. Recipe can be doubled for 4 loaves.  Any dough not initially used can be refrigerated in same bowl with loose lid for up to 14 days.
To bake a loaf of bread, sprinkle flour on work surface, divide with your hands a grapefruit size portion of dough, dusting a bit of the flour on the outside of the portion of the dough, not really mixing any of the flour into the dough.  Most of the dusting flour will fall off.  Gently stretch the surface of the dough around to the bottom on all four sides, shaping the dough into a ball.  Then stretching in gently to elongate it and taper the ends.   No kneading required.  The entire process should take no more than 20 to 40 seconds.   Place on parchment paper, cut to size of dutch oven.  Cover loaf with towel and let rise for 40 mins.
Before placing in heated oven, dust with flour and make 3 slashes, 1/4 inch deep, across the top, using a serrated knife.  ( If refrigerated dough is used, allow more resting time before baking).
The method of baking to be addressed here is to use a cast iron dutch oven (10 or 12 inch size).  One of  3 methods can be used for baking.  At home in your kitchen oven; or outside using either charcoal or wood coals.
While dough is rising, preheat dutch oven to approximately 500 degrees.  Use a trivet in bottom of oven, and preheat with lid on.  When temp is reached, carefully place dough (with parchment paper on bottom) in oven and replace lid.  Use insulated glove while doing this.
Bake for 35 min. at 450 degree.  When using indoor oven, remove lid for last 5 mins.  Carefully remove loaf  from oven and place on cooling rack.  Slice at will.

Artisan Dutch Oven White Bread (no knead) Kitchen or Campfire


  • 1  1/2 cups lukewarm water (approx. 100 degrees)
  • 2  1/4 t. granulated yeast
  • 2  1/4 t. coarse salt (.6 oz)
  • 3  1/4 cups all-purpose white flour (16.3 oz)

Using glass bowl or cup, dissolve yeast in lukewarm water.   Put flour in large  bowl, incorporate salt into flour.  Using a wooden spoon, add water with yeast to flour, making sure everything is uniformly moist.  Dough should be wet and loose enough to conform to shape of container.Cover with a loose fitting lid.  Allow mixture to rise for approximately 2 hours, depending on room temp. and initial water temp.  longer rising time (up to 5 hrs.) will not harm the result.  You can use a portion of the dough any time after this period.  Divide in half for 2 loaves.  Recipe can be doubled for 4 loaves.  Any dough not initially used can be refrigerated in same bowl with loose lid for up to 14 days.

To bake a loaf of bread, sprinkle flour on work surface, divide with your hands a grapefruit size portion of dough,dusting a bit of the flour on the outside of the portion of the dough, not really mixing any of the flour into the dough.  Most of the dusting flour will fall off.   Gently stretch the surface of the dough around to the bottom on all four sides, shaping the dough into a ball.  No kneading required. 
The entire process should take no more than 30 to 60 seconds.  Place on parchment paper, cut to size of dutch oven.  Cover loaf with towel and let rise for 40 mins.
Before placing in heated oven , dust with flour and make 3 slashes  1/4 inch deep across the top, using a serrated knife.  (If refrigerated dough is used, allow more resting time before baking.)
The method of baking to be addressed here is to use a cast iron dutch oven (10 or 12 inch size).  One of 3 methods can be used for baking.   At home in your kitchen oven;  or  outside using either charcoal or woods coals.  While dough is rising, preheat dutch oven to approximately 500 degrees. Use a trivet in bottom of oven, and preheat with lid on.
When temp is reached, carefully place dough,(with parchment paper on bottom) in oven and replace lid.   Use  insulated glove  while doing this.  Bake for 35 mins. at 450 degree.  When using indoor oven remove lid for last 5 mins.  Carefully remove loaf from oven and place on cooling rack.  Slice at will.

Stan has been making this bread for 28 years and this is a time tested recipe. 

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Meal Planning - 6 weeks at a time!

6 Week Meal Planner

My wife, Danielle, has recently created a 6 week meal planner, along with recipes, shopping lists and templates.  This is available as a PDF download that you can print off, and a printed version in a ring binder that you can add to with your own recipes. Order here: http://modernpioneer.highwire.com/product/6-week-meal-planner

This 6 week meal planner comes as 2 options:
  1. downloadable PDF for you to print at home, or
  2. a paper version that we can mail to you. The paper version comes in a ring binder.
This meal planner includes:
  1. More than 30 recipes, organized by cooking time
  2. 6 weeks of planned meals
  3. shopping lists
    • shopping lists are coded so you can easily edit for recipe changes or changes in schedule
    • includes pantry list for your staple food and non-food items.
  4. Extra templates to add your own weeks of plans
  5. Suggestions (but not recipes) for side dishes and breakfasts,.
The meals use a variety of cooking methods and times. They are adaptable and include freezer recipes for future prepping. Most are from-scratch recipes, but allows for you to substitute in your own recipes or pre-prepared versions.

 Order here: http://modernpioneer.highwire.com/product/6-week-meal-planner

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