Thursday, February 27, 2014

My Favorite Salad Dressings

So I've been on a writing hiatus for the last few weeks.  It's been made public on my family blog, Facebook, and now here on Sports Bras and Aprons:  I am expecting!  Right now I'm 12 weeks and finally getting past the yucky phase.  I've been pretty unmotivated to do anything but sit on the couch, take a bunch of hot showers, and eat.  And eat.  And eat!  

It seems fitting then that I share a recipe today.  Actually a couple recipes.  They are not my own recipes, however, they are FANTASTIC!  I make them all the time and frequently get compliments and requests to share the recipe.  

Salad Dressings are some of the easiest condiments you can make on your own while avoiding all the extra nasties found in processed foods.  I have not mastered ranch dressing yet but it's on my list of things to try.  Vinegar and oil based dressings are so simple and you most likely have all the ingredients on hand.  

I stumbled on this recipe through  You can find the recipe HERE.  I fell in love with it and made some of my own adjustments just to make it easier.  I use my dehydrator to dry red peppers, onions, and garlic and keep them on hand.  For Christmas I made packets of a mix for this dressing with instructions. It was such a hit, that I have made some for myself too.  Now we can have Zesty Italian Dressing whenever we want.  

To make packets, simply combine all dry ingredients and store in a baggie.  When you are ready to use, add the olive oil, red wine vinegar, water, and lemon juice.

The second recipe I use all the time is a basic Balsamic Vinaigrette.  This recipe is found out  This is a great dressing for any spinach salad.  I also love to use it on Greek style salads as well.  It is really quick and easy to throw together.  It also saves well and keeps for a while in the refrigerator.

You can find the recipe HERE.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

10 Helpful Potato Masher Uses

One of my favorite hand held tools in the kitchen?  My potato masher.  There are many types of potato mashers and they come in all different shapes and sizes.  Mine happens to be a little old fashioned.  It could be why I adore it so much.  It came to me in a box of random kitchen items passed on from my Great Aunt Obbey and it looks a little like this: 

Monday, February 10, 2014

How to Make Your Own Brown Sugar

Have you ever gone to make some cookies only to find out that you are out of brown sugar??  NO!!!!  That's the worst.  But it's totally fixable.  There's an easy substitution that actually works so well you may not buy brown sugar anymore!

White refined sugar has been stripped of anything useful for the body and molasses is actually a bi-product of the refining process.  Brown sugar is basically white sugar that companies mix molasses back into.  So why not make it yourself.  Who knew it was that easy?

Here's what you need:

1 cup regular white sugar (preferably organic variety)
1 tbsp organic unsulfured molasses (or more if you want a darker brown sugar)

Simply add the molasses to your sugar and blend away.  I've found using a potato masher works great.  You can also use a spoon or a mixer.  Just make sure you get it all worked in.  

So it's still not the healthiest of sugar choices, but YOU control what goes in it.  The best part is, you can add more or less molasses to get the darkness (flavor) that you want.  

So happy baking.  And may your pantry be ever full of homemade brown sugar.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

H2O Here We Go

Drinking enough water in a day can be tough.  Unless you are actually keeping track, who knows how much water you actually drink?

In an article by CBS News it is stated that, "According to a survey of 2,818 Americans, conducted in 14 US cities by Yankelovich Partners for the Rockefeller University and the International Bottled Water Association, only 34% are drinking the recommended daily amount of water."  That's a lot of people not getting enough water each day.