Friday, July 3, 2009

Weekend Link Luv

HERE'S a great article on how to frugally keep your kids clothed. We use a lot of these methods ourselves but there were a few new ones in there.

I've always wanted to make homemade vanilla and when Heavenly Homemaker did a tutorial that was all I needed to take the leap. I really liked her tutorial but I wasn't completely satisfied with the total cost so I found another article HERE that uses less vanilla beans, less maturing time and different alcohol options that might cut the costs. I would love to bottle these up for Christmas gifts.

Several of you sent me a link to a great article on determining whether you're getting a good deal on your toilet paper purchases. HERE'S the link to figure out whether you're getting the best wipe for your mean BUCK!

Amy in Horseshoe Lake, AR was looking for a recipe for homemade Nestle Quick to make cold chocolate milk. I scoured the Internet and all the recipes I could find were for a chocolate syrup, or using powdered milk. (sorry Amy, that's what's been taking me so stinking long to answer your e-mail.) Does anyone have a recipe for the powder that you stir into a glass of milk?

Have a great weekend and we'll see you on Menu Plan Monday!


flowerpower said...

try this link it has some info

Steph (My Country Haven) said...

I've been making homemade vanilla for years. I usually buy the big bottle of vodka and add about 10 to 15 vanilla beans (depending on the size). I cut open the pods and scrape the beans out in put into bottle, then add in the pods themselves. I let it set in a cool dark area of my pantry and give it a good shake about once a week or so. It's usually ready in about a 2 to 3 months. When that bottle is empty, I buy another bottle, add fresh beans, and pour as much vodka as will fit into the older bottle, reserving the remainder to add in as a use the vanilla.

I also keep a smaller bottle of vanilla in my cabinet to use and then refill from the larger one as needed. It's very simple and I haven't bought a bottle of store bought vanilla extract in years!

Brianschef said...

These are a few I have gathered over the years.

Homemade Cold Chocolate Milk
11 ounces milk
1 ounce water
1 1/2 teaspoons cocoa
2 tablespoons sugar
Put sugar, cocoa, and water in microwavable 12 oz glass.
Microwave for 30 seconds or until sugar and cocoa dissolve.
add cold milk and stir.

Cold Dark Chocolate Rice Milk
2 pieces of Green & Black or your favorite 70% plus dark chocolate
Unsweetened cocoa powder (3 teaspoons)
Agave Nectar or Maple Syrup
Rice Milk
In a bowl, mix chocolate with half a teaspoon of rice milk and heat until melted (40 seconds in the microwave should do it)
Add 2.5 teaspoons of unsweetened cocoa powder along with maple syrup in a wide container.
Add Rice Milk
Use an automatic stirrer or frother in order to blend in all the ingredients.
Add 3-4 ice cubes.

Cocoa Mix

15 cups Instant powdered milk
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoon salt

Makes enough for 10 quarts or 40, 1-cup servings. To use the mix, stir 1/2 cup of mix into 1 cup hot water for a warm drink or ice cold water for chocolate milk.

Chocolate Milk Mix
4 cups Instant Non Fat Dry Milk
1 cup cocoa powder
3/4 cup sugar (or equivalent sugar substitute)
1/2 teaspoon salt
Combine ingredients and store in a tightly covered container. To make 1 cup chocolate milk, use 1/2 cup dry mix and 1 cup water. Combine the dry mix with a small amount of the water and stir to make a smooth paste. Add the remaining water and chill.

**Or you can do what I do and add a bit of dry chocolate pudding mix to a glass of ice cold milk and stir until you are happy with the flavor. 

DeeDee* said...

Vanilla extract makes a great gift, you can make many recipes from this core recipe.
My recipe for vanilla extract is similar to yours, you can see it below, it also includes a recipe for vanilla sugar.

Another great use for vanilla extract is to make vanilla simple syrup, which is great for use in coffee, and to use to sweeten whipped cream.

Now is the time to start making the extract as the longer it is allowed to sit, the more complex the flavor. I haven't thought to try different types of vanilla beans so I will add that info to my recipe for future use. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Thanks Gayle and Brianschef! I will be making my own mix when I get home from vacation!

Stephanie said...

I also make my own vanilla and I love it. Heres is the post I did on it: