Choosing the Perfect Tortilla Press

...the smaller, 6 1/2 inch press as small tortillas are used in authentic Mexican street food. Making corn tortillas is much simpler than I expected. All you do is get masa harina (a limed corn flour), mix it roughly 50/50 with water and let the dough rest for a half hour to an hour. Next, you roll the masa into little 2 inch balls and press them between a plastic bag inserted into the tortilla press. The last step is to heat them on the stove for...

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A viewing suggestion from the media arm of Root Simple

...cover goodies like: Coppicing How to make two type of fences: a hazel wattle fence and a dead hedge fence, both of which can be made with a machete and a club Treadwheels: Giant human powered hamster wheels which, along with water wheels, were the engines of their time. How to make rush lights out of sheep fat and rushes. An almost forgotten food plant called Alexanders, which is a Mediterranean plant related to parsley, which I’ve never h...

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Saturday Linkages: Can We Please Have More Underpass Chandeliers?

...p://gu.com/p/3mb4a/tw  The secret light of plants by Elizabeth Licata http://feedly.com/e/_hlIqNZG  California Legalized Selling Food Made At Home And Created Over A Thousand Local Businesses http://onforb.es/1e8mNCY  Massive Water Reduction http://feedly.com/e/v787ggKN  Fodder System Updates http://feedly.com/e/dKXb-Y-Q  It’s Not the Snow, It’s Not the Politics: Blame the Car-Dependent City http://gizmodo.com/its-not-the-snow-its-not...

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Fruit Tree Maintenance Calendars

Where we live, it’s the time of year to prune and deal with pest issues on fruit trees. The University of California has a very helpful page of fruit tree maintenance calendars for us backyard orchard enthusiasts.  The calendars cover everything from when to water, fertilize, paint the trunks and many other tasks. You can also find them in one big handy set of charts in UC’s book The Home Orchard. The permaculturalist in me likes ou...

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Campfire Cooking: Fish in Clay (& Vegetarian Options!)

...tation. If you do dig your own clay, and find that it is not pure enough to hold together well, try adding an egg white to the mix. Once you have your clay and are ready to start cooking, soften up the clay by adding a little water to it and kneading it until it’s soft and pliable: The next step is to find yourself some big leaves for wrapping your food. We were using big sycamore and curly dock leaves. If you can’t find any big leav...

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Recipe for the World’s Best Whole Wheat Pancake

.../2 teaspoon sea salt 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1 teaspoon baking powder The night before making these pancakes I take a tablespoon of mature starter and add it to 100 grams of freshly milled Sonora wheat flour and 110 grams of water. This mixture will be the 200 grams of starter you’ll use in the recipe. The next day mix all the ingredients together, fry them up in a pan and get ready to have your pancake paradigm shifted. New frontiers in b...

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Smurfs Team Up With US Forest Service

...mer. The DiscoverTheForest website explains it all: As inhabitants of the forest, Smurfs are the perfect ambassadors for forest recreation. As these new PSAs remind us, the forest provides benefits such as clean air and fresh water, and provides children with the ability to explore, use their imaginations, discover new wildlife and engage in unstructured and adventurous play. The Smurfs’ enthusiasm for their environment hopes to inspire families...

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Radish Surprise

...The radish plant really is quite pretty,  the equal of any ornamental flowering shrub–but as bad is the picture is, it gives you some scale. See the bales of our straw bale garden behind it?  I think it must be pulling water from there, which accounts for its size and longevity. It’s gone a little past its prime now– a couple of weeks ago the blooms were thicker. By the way, radish blossoms are tasty food for people, too....

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How to Cook Broadleaf Plantain

The last plantain in our yard–the only one which survived the long, brutal summer without water. The winter rains, which are just beginning, will have plantain sprouting all over Southern California soon. We’re big fans of foraging teacher Pascal Baudar. He approaches wild foods like no one else we know–as a gourmet experience. Combining Old World traditions, Native wisdom and a good deal of culinary invention, Pascal and his p...

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How to Cook Perfect Scrambled Eggs

...I read the rest of the book, but the double boiler egg method sure works well. You melt some butter in a double boiler first to help keep the eggs from sticking. You can also use a pan held over (but not in) a pot of boiling water if you don’t have a double boiler (and I don’t have a double boiler). It takes longer to cook eggs this way, of course, but you get nice soft and fluffy scrambled eggs. You do have to clean the pan immediat...

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