My name is Shannon and I am married and the mother of 2 boys. This is my journey and musings as a self proclaimed County Girl, living in town, or rather in the village. I try to live simple, with my motto as Back to Basics. Enjoy life and the little important things that make it worthwhile. Welcome to my world : )
Saturday, November 17, 2012
Lotion Part 2 and Baking Bread
Hi everyone, new to the blog and my trusty old friends alike. It has been a busy couple of weeks leading up
to the Holidays, both Thanksgiving and Christmas seasons. I have been hard at work
experimenting with making homemade all natural lotions and baking bread. In my
last post, I made lotion bars. They are really nice for rubbing on your elbows,
knees and heels ladies. Well men too, if they want. You can also rub them back
and forth between your hands and they warm enough for you to rub the lotion
into your hands.It is the ingredients
that make them hard. The Beeswax, coco butter and coconut oil are all hard in
their natural state. This past week, I have been working with different ratios
of adding olive oil to the mixture in order to create a softer lotion that
could be scooped out of a jar or put into a pump bottle type of dispenser.
The recipe that I came up with and tried out on my friend
Andrea and my mother, seemed to work the best. It is thick but could be thinned
out with more olive oil. The beginning is a bit greasy compared to the chemical laden store bought alternatives but this quickly absorbs
into your skin leaving no residue, only soft skin and a nice scent.
1oz of beeswax
¼ cup of Olive Oil
½ a cup of coconut oil
2 tablespoons of coco butter
For scent, I used sweet orange and tea tree essential oils.
I used 20 drops of orange and 3 of the tea tree but feel free to customize your
*The mixture needs to be stirred constantly as it cools so I
also used a mason jar.
In a pan of boiling water, put a glass mason jar.Add your beeswax first to the mason jar and
let that melt down. At this point it is important to mention, do not let water
get into your mason jar. The water will aid in breaking down your ingredients
and compromise their shelf life. This is an all-natural product and so it could
become rancid far faster than oils do if water is mixed in. That being said, I then
add in the coco butter and coconut oil. As those melt and come together I added
in the olive oil. Once all the ingredients have become liquid and are combined,
remove the jar from the boiling water and let it begin to cool. As it cooled I
then added in my essential oils. This mixture needs to be continuously stirred
to keep the ingredients from separating and becoming solid as they cool. I put the lid on my mason
jar and just shook it up every couple of minutes. This went on for about 20
minutes as it cooled. I just held the jar in a towel because it was hot.
An almost butter consistency
As it cooled and started to form into a semi-solid mixture,
I transferred it to jars that I bought at Hobby Lobby. They have a sealed top
and a little wooden spoon that is perfect for scooping. I have to say, I love this product. I use it
on my hands as well as in my hair. Just a little but smoothed away the frizz
that my hair is prone too. I love it!
This morning I woke up really in the mood to
make some comfort food after experimenting all week in the kitchen on non edible things. It was a cold start to the day, I was up early to
take my son to meet his church youth group who were volunteering at a local
homeless shelter, so why not? When I got home, I had a cup of coffee and decided to bake
some bread.This was all spur of the moment so I went with a new recipe that I kind of made up as I went.
3 cups of bread flour
1/2 cup of shredded
1cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tsp of salt
1tbsp of sugar
2 tbsp of soft butter
Beer I used
2 tbsp of sour cream
2 tsp of dry yeast
½ cup of beer
1/3 cup of water (check for consistency and more or less
depending) plus an additional ¼ cup of
water for the yeast to bloom in.
In a separate bowl, I added the yeast and ¼ cup of warm
water. Set this aside until the yeast is frothy.
I mixed the dry ingredients into my Kitchen Aide Mixture
with the bread hook. I mixed the dry ingredients all together before adding
Then to the dry I added the butter, Sharp Cheddar, sour
cream and the yeast filled water. Slowly I incorporated the beer first to be sure that all the beer was used and then added water until the dough formed a mass swirling around the mixing bowl
all attached to that trusty bread hook. I let this bead for 4 minutes.
In a bowl, covered with a damp cheese cloth or kitchen towel let this rise for about 45 minutes or until it doubles in
size. Then punch down the dough and knead it again for a few minutes. Into a greased 9x5 loaf pan it goes and let it rise again for half an hour. This
went into a preheated 350F degree oven and baked for 35 minutes.
The bread is good. It is a dense bread and not at all light
and fluffy but it is a good consistency and I like the flavor that the sour
cream and beer left. The cheese all but disappears in the baking and leaves it
with just the hint of flavors without any gooey-ness. Overall a nice bread for slicing and eating with
Pre-Thanksgiving dinners this week will not be elaborate meals. I am thinking beef stew tonight. Sounds good and its easy to make.