Sunday, February 22, 2009


As a Californian, I was inundated with the "whole foods" craze. Now that I'm connecting with my pioneer roots here in Utah, I find myself doing some real life whole food cooking. The results aren't always what I thought they'd be but I feel good for trying. In addition, I've been attempting to recreate some of our favorite things at home from scratch to be more provident shall we say. Let's just call this process "scratching".

Here are some of my scratching projects...

  • I never buy any premade cookie at the store. Using only whole chocolate chips, and a whole lot of sugar and flour, I make plenty of cookies from scratch.

  • In lieu of premade chocolate milk, we had been using carnation instant breakfast chocolate packets mixed with milk. To bring it down even more, we started buying cans of hot chocolate mix. Then, I found a recipe to make our own hot chocolate mix using cocoa, creamer, powdered milk and powdered sugar so I sent Scott to retrieve me a can of our never used powdered milk from our food storage supply and whipped us up a batch. The jury is still out on whether this is passing muster with the kids. I gave some to Emma this morning who exclaimed, "this tastes we-od".

  • The Creamery on 9th Street makes the yummiest hamburgers. Scott was the cleverest one day and watched how they make them. I got him on the job of making some at home. Using an ice cream scooper, put a scoop of raw and unspiced hamburger on the stove. Cook it for a minute, squash it down with a spatula and salt and pepper. After it's fully cooked, serve on a homemade roll. I used a Rhodes roll from my freezer that I had let raise for the prescribed time and baked. It was perfect!

  • Scott and I have never bought premade maple syrup. We only use mapleine with lots of whole sugar. I don't use Bisquick either. I have the best recipe for waffles and pancakes.

  • Our microwave still is outside because of the popcorn incident which stunk it up big time so everything gets heated on the stove or in the oven these days. It's very wholesome not having any of those micro-waves breaking down plastic or giving us cancer. This may change when it gets warmer outside. I use a lot of whole dishwashing soap to clean all of the extra dishes this requires.

  • Speaking of popcorn, we only pop popcorn on the stove now using whole popcorn kernels and whole melted butter on top.

  • Scott uses only organic grapes homegrown on the vines from our yard (and a whole bunch of sugar) to make jelly. No pesticides people.

  • Sundays are Cinnamon Roll Sundays around here. I usually buy frozen Rhodes cinnamon rolls from Costco but I decided to give it a try myself. This weekend was my third try at the matter. I'm glad to report that the third time is indeed a charm. Thanks to my cousin with a really good (& easy) recipe along with some excellent tips, it finally worked!

  • People, hold onto your hats here but I will confess that I have made my own laundry detergent. I'm obsessed with the Duggar family (the ones with 18 children and now a daughter-in-law...yes I keep track and secretly wish I could live with them or have that many children) and in their book recently released (which I highly recommend), they shared their recipe for homemade laundry detergent. We are still studying whether or not this is an acceptable 'scratching' event for us. The cost savings is so huge I'm very hopeful but I want to be sure that the Jacobs family doesn't smell before I can fully recommend the experience to others. I made the mistake of confessing this to a couple of my California friends--the first laughed so hard she couldn't speak and the second said she needed to get me out of here if I'm going to start doing stuff like that.

  • When we have a true hankering for ice cream, we have homemade it using whole cream, whole milk and pouring melted chocolate chips at the end to make chocolate crackle. It's very wholesome.

Just in case my Weight Watcher friend reads this, please note that just because I make it doesn't mean I always eat it. I do feel it's a major bummer that when eliminating processed foods, I may be healthier but I'm not necessarily skinnier. I still have to eat in moderation. What a jip!

Recently, Scott needed a new picture in order to renew his passport. Remember the days you had to go get your picture taken at like Kinko's or someplace? Not anymore! I took this picture of Scott from scratch.

I'm always up for new "scratching" ideas of anyone wants to share them with me!


katielyn said...

Ask my dad- he makes hot chocolate from scratch. Angie claims it's her favorite.

katielyn said...

Wow! You are quite the scratcher. When I first read the title and saw Scott's picture, I thought you were asking for ideas how to deal with a rash of Scott's. Boy, am I glad he is not suffering (at least not visibly).

Celia Fae said...

Still giggling here. I wondered when the laundry detergent truth was going to emerge. I'd like to see some pictures and the recipe, please.

Paige said...

I hear you can make your own soap too. Go get some leftover fat from your local plastic surgeon.

Kath said...

this is weird...I swear I put a comment on this post earlier today. It wasn't even so offensive that you would delete it. Anyway, I am thinking that I need more itchin' before I start scratchin' are an inspiration!! fun post.

Paige said...

Explain your only yuppies have couple friends comment. I don't get it. I'm willing to entertain it, but please explain. Am I a yuppy? My parents? Just conspicuous consumers?

Layne and Teresa said...

I'm impressed with all the 'scratching' going on at your house! We do a couple of things - just not ambitious enough to add anymore right now. (Although, after doing some budgeting - we might add one or two.) Inspiring post.:}
I just have to say something about helping in the classroom. My kids are at a charter school where parents are required to go in once a week. I love it. I have to admit I was laughing about kids trying to deceive you. I guess I like it because I can see right through that stuff and they know they need to show me their work no matter what the excuse is, I'm good at saying - 'I don't know, let's figure it out together.', I'm in there enough that the kids and I know each other AND it's great to spend a little bit of time with my kids - oh, and I know their teachers, parents of fellow students and have an idea of how the classroom works. So, it ends up being worth it. If you lived closer - I'd recommend it. Truthfully - not sure what we'll do when they have to go to a school where I can't go too. I also completely 'get' that it's not for everyone.