Mixing and Whipping – Day 20

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Kitchen Aid Still Life

Today we tackle the tools that mix and blend including the stand mixer, the hand held mixer, and various hand tools.  Pull out all your tools that serve these functions and consider the redundancy in your collection.  Choose your favorites and make changes as needed.  Then move the rest to the donation box and clean out your kitchen cabinet and return the remaining items neatly.

Xaver and I have just purchased a short bus and we’ll be building out the interior for our third tiny home so I’m considering the usefulness of each item right along with you.  Since we’ll be going from 125 square feet, down to 110 square feet – and it will be configured very differently – it’s not going to be a huge adjustment and we are very excited about the places we’ll visit and the people we will meet along the way.  This also serves as a reminder of why we continue to work at downsizing and it helps us to reinvigorate our efforts.  Perhaps you would appreciate a reminder of why you’re going to all the trouble to downsize or right-size your kitchen.  Today take a moment to remember the goals you had when you began this process and remember what you stand to gain.  The more we focus on the simplicity and order we gain from this process, as opposed to the losses of downsizing, the more we’ll be able to enjoy the transition.

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VINNIE 3 – our new short bus

Recently I scrolled through social media looking at photos taken by folks who have only recently gone tiny and over and over again I’m reading the joy they have in this journey.  I saw again the sense of accomplishment and enjoyment these folks have their small cozy spaces.  I have been at this for a number of years so it’s easy to forget how exciting and joyful it was at the beginning.  The feeling hasn’t changed, just the sense of newness has left me.  This new Skoolie project will bring back the sense of newness without giving up the perks of living tiny, in fact, this bus is more road worthy than any of our other homes (lol!) and I look forward to traveling the country in it.

Keep on working toward your goal.  You can do it!  I know you can!

I’m Carmen Shenk, the Tiny House Foodie, reminding you that we can #LiveTiny #EmbraceSimplicity and still #EatWell.  Thanks for watching, I really appreciate it!29c45-1a2bcarmen

Right-Sizing Baking Gear – Day 13

Today we tackle bakeware, and if you bake a lot of cake and bread, then you may have more items to downsize.  I keep one baking dish, a set of four cookie sheets that all fit in the oven at the same time, and some cake and cupcake pans.

11 bakewareSince I used to bake professionally, I had a lot of gear to get rid of, and even downsized my wedding cake pans – a collection of round cake pans in various sizes.  Recently when making a wedding cake, I needed to get pretty creative since I no longer had those pans.  There is a video on that project that you may also find interesting.  Even when we downsize something we may wish to have later on, there are sometimes creative ways to work around that and find solutions that still work just as well or maybe even better.  In this case, the wedding cake tier that I created from layers baked out flat on parchment worked just as well (maybe better) than baking those layers in cake pans would have worked.  No worries.  In tiny house life, creativity and adaptability are your best friends!  We don’t have to keep all the gear for every possible contingency.  When we trust that we will have what we need, when we need it, then it is easier to release things to the next person they are meant for. 

In the video I mention a recipe for No-Knead Bread recipe baked in a Dutch Oven – be sure to get the metal replacement knob for the top as the plastic knob that comes with it shouldn’t go in the oven.  This delicious bread recipe is available in this New York Times post.

Pull all of your baking things out and look them over.  Choose your favorites and move the rest to the donate boxes you set up earlier.  Items you have not used in the last year are most likely items that can go straight to the donation box.  Then clean out the cabinet and put the remaining items away.  Isn’t that better?  I think so to.

Thanks so much for watching and following along, I really appreciate it! 29c45-1a2bcarmen

 

Choosing Your Favorites – Day 2

Your assignment for the day is to look around your kitchen and choose your favorite items.  Get everyone in the family in on this.  Choose items that have good memories and stories attached.  Choose items that are beautiful and useful.  Narrow it down to just three items per person in the household.  It may seem like an easy assignment, but it may be harder than you think.  This is where the downsizing begins.29c45-1a2bcarmen

Christmas Layered Mints

I make a number of Christmas treats each year, and this one is so simple and fun, and it’s always so fun to see how people respond.  This year I really stepped it up a notch using a transfer sheet to leave a design on the chocolate, and I’ve also upgraded to Young Living’s Vitality line of essential oils – spearmint and peppermint – and the flavor is fresh, complex, and wonderful.  This is such a fun quick project for the holidays and I hope you try it and let me know how it goes for you.  And as always, thanks for watching, I really appreciate it!29c45-1a2bcarmen

Refrigeration in a Tiny House

I’m back with a video on refrigeration in a tiny house – or in any dwelling that happens to have wheels.  Any time you can unplug your house, that includes unplugging your fridge.  So it may require just a little extra consideration when moving your tiny haven-home around the county or the country.

There’s a little sneak peek of me and the Tiny House Foodie kitchen a few months back before we removed the big monster energy-suck fridge and gave the place a much needed makeover.  It looks better now, don’t you agree?  And the color of my hair is always changing, so you will always be able to tell when I mix up new and old footage!  lol!

fdcd503e4785febee7dee3a6e1bc3d95Keeping foods out of the danger zone in your tiny house is really important so that you don’t get sick.  This applies to cooked foods and proteins such as meat, eggs, and dairy products.  Most other things (aside from a thousand and one plastic salad dressing bottles) don’t require refrigeration – aside from beer and white wine, obvs.

Have you noticed how many tiny house folks are vegan or vegetarian?  I have.  It really is so much easier when traveling especially, to keep those things to a minimum so that you don’t end up throwing away expensive products when you don’t know how long they’ve been in the danger zone, and also so that your health isn’t at risk.  Have you ever looked at a piece of meat and wondered if it is ok or not?  Chances are, it’s fine.  But nobody wants to be wrong about that!

And when you are… that’s when my little friend Digize comes to the rescue!  There have been a number of times when I could tell I was eating something that was not cooked properly, but I didn’t want to offend the host and hostess.  Sometimes you can tell when you bite into a nut or seed that they’ve gone off and the oils are rancid – stop eating immediately!  I’ve even been served some fish that had an ever-so-slight smell… you know the one.  And again… I knew it wasn’t going to sit well, but I did what you do when you love the cook and his or her good intentions.  Sometimes the food doesn’t have to be off for my stomach to freak out over it, just a different cook in a different kitchen with a different set of bacteria.  So I keep a bottle of Digize with me, ESPECIALLY when I’m traveling!  It’s a blend of essential oils formulated for digestive support for those moments when something you ate just wasn’t… right.  More info on the Digize blend of essential oils at Anoint-Ed.com.

In addition, while we are on the topic of cold storage and happy digestion, here’s a handy little chart for cooking various proteins so you get it “done” without turning it into something slightly more flavorful than the neighbor’s driveway. Meat-Temperature-GuideAs always – rules are made to be broken.  Sushi is our very favorite thing and there is a place we love to visit where the Sushi chef has become a friend of ours and he always makes something special and sends it over to our table.  I never know exactly what every component is, I just know the colors, flavors, and textures are divine!  It’s so much fun to see someone who enjoys making food for the flavor and the art of it.IMG_20170312_123415130 I hope you learned something today that will help you as you transition into tiny house living.  Thanks for visiting my blog, I appreciate it.  Stay safe out there and know which risks are worth taking, and keep a bottle of Digize close wherever you roam. 29c45-1a2bcarmen

 

The Tiny House Foodie visits The Queen Mary

 

The Austrian and I had a lovely time on board the RMS Queen Mary for a foodie fiction event featuring a novel by Patricia V. Davis and a recipe I created called Shrimp Rohini that was inspired by Patricia’s novel.  Todd Henderson, Executive Chef of the RMS Queen Mary, created my recipe for the crowd along with another recipe from sailing days of the Queen Mary.  I enjoyed meeting so many amazing people on the ship and made a lot of new friends.  It was a spectacular event and we enjoyed our travels from here in Virginia to Baltimore out to LA, then down to Long Beach where the QM is docked.  We loved everything about our stateroom and our time aboard this remarkable vessel.  We continued down the coast to San Diego and enjoyed the sand and surf before our flight home.  It was a remarkable trip, one I’d do again in a heartbeat.  The highlight for me was meeting Patricia in person as we’ve been online friends for years.