Thursday, March 25, 2010

Old Fashioned Extended Butter

During the World War II food shortages, people were forced to make the most of what they already had. With today’s grocery prices, using hints from that time still makes a lot of sense. Here’s an interesting one: how to turn one stick of butter into two. This extended butter has the same taste and texture as regular butter. It’s frugal… half the cost… but it’s also healthier… because it has half the fat and half the calories of regular butter.

You can use extended butter almost anywhere you would normally use butter, except baking. Since it contains only half the amount of fat, so you cannot use it in any dish that depends on a certain fat content. This is why you cannot use it for baking.

Extended butter is easy to make. Just beat one half cup of lukewarm water into one softened stick (one half cup) of butter. If you use a mixer, start slowly to prevent splattering. Add small amounts of water at a time and keep beating until the water is thoroughly incorporated into the butter. The mixture will be smooth and fluffy, and you will end up with one cup of soft butter.

After this soft butter is refrigerated, it will become as firm as regular butter. I make up only one stick at a time and usually store the butter covered in a stainless steel measuring cup that lost its handle some time back. If your preferences run to something fancier, try shaping it or putting it in a pretty dish. This butter will also pick up detail nicely from a mold.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Starbucks Freebie Tomorrow!

If you like to treat yourself to a Starbucks beverage every now and then, write this one on your calendar and share it with your friends. March 23 is Free Pastry Day at Starbucks! You’ll have to act fast because you’ll only have until 10:30 on that day to claim your free pastry (with the purchase of a handcrafted beverage.) No sleeping in on the 23rd because if you snooze you lose!

Grab your free pastry coupon now and then plan to meet a friend/co-worker or take a family member to Starbucks.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Gutter Gardening

I love this garden idea! Great for tip for urban living. Attach gutters to the back of a house/building or to a fence. Gutters are available in many different sizes which makes them ideal for fitting into a small space.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Granny's Cinnamon Toast Spread

This is easy to make!  Keep some in your refrigerator all the time for a quick breakfast or snack!

Quick Cinnamon toast

¼ Cup Butter
¼ Cup brown sugar (packed)
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Beat all ingredients until fluffy. Refrigerate in a covered jar. Spread on hot toast or muffins.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Quick & Easy Breadsticks

Make quick and easy bread sticks from your old stale hot dog buns! 

Cut each bun lenthwise into 3 or 4 sticks.  Brush each stick with melted butter and sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese.  Bake on a lightly greased cookie sheet at 350º for about 10 minutes or until sticks begin to turn golden brown.  Serve immediately!

Quick Baking Tip

Here's something my own mother taught me a long long time ago: Shortening can be measured exactly. If recipe calls for 1/3 cup, fill measuring cup two-thirds full of cold water, add enough shortening to bring water to top of cup, pour off water and you have exactly 1/3 cup of shortening.