It’s National Cocoa Day Y’all!

pexels-photo-239584Ok, I have a confession to make . . . I HATE hot chocolate . . . and chocolate milk.  I don’t think either one actually tastes like chocolate.

Americans tend to use both the term hot chocolate and hot cocoa to mean the same thing.  I think there is probably a regional dialect thing going on as to which you use.

  • Hot chocolate is made with ground chocolate which contains cocoa butter.  It’s mixed with hot milk and is actually a drinking chocolate.
  • Hot cocoa is made from cocoa powder. Cocoa beans are processed into a paste called chocolate liquor and then the cocoa butter is separated from it resulting in cocoa powder.

To do my part in helping celebrate National Cocoa Day, I DID go get a special coffee from a local coffee shop.  They have an awesome coffee that has dark chocolate, cinnamon, cayenne and a few other yummy ingredients.

So, raise a cup (or, if you are British, a cuppa) and hunker down with a hot drink.

Peace, Love & Cocoa

Hoosier Barn Chick

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The Buzz On Honey

pexels-photo-414115.jpegHoney flavored anything is always a hot commodity.  But, there’s a lot that most people don’t know about honey.  So, here’s the buzz on it.

  1.  Honey never spoils.  I’ve known this for years but it always seems to surprise people when I mention it.  I guess I know this because of my love of puttering around in the kitchen.  Honey doesn’t spoil due to its acidic nature and the fact that it’s low in moisture.  Honey has even been found (unspoiled) in Egyptian tombs.
  2. Honey is good for what ails you.  Its makeup makes it naturally antibiotic.
  3. Honey is good for the economy and environment.  Bees are massive pollinators which is good for the environment.  And, bees pollinate (directly or indirectly) up to a third of food Americans eat.
  4. Out of 20,000 species of bees, only a fraction of them actually make honey.
  5. Bees survive cold weather by consuming their honey.
  6. Honey is the only food that includes all the substances necessary to sustain life, including enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and water. It’s also the only food that contains pinocembrin, an antioxidant associated with improved brain functioning.
  7. Honey is the only insect secretion that we eat.
  8. Honey color and taste is affected by the types of plants bees visit.
  9. In 1957, the founders of Dutch Gold Honey began packaging their honey in the now-familiar honey bear containers.

Peace, Love & Honey

Hoosier Barn Chick

Yup! That’s Me!

I have had a cold/sinus infection for WEEKS.  Honestly, it’s wearing me down.  I should own stock in DayQuil.  So, nine hours late, I’m phoning today’s post in.  It perfectly sums up my life the last several weeks.

how-daylight-saving-time-feels-its-pitch-black-what-time-is-6167733

What’s on the agenda for the next week?  Hopefully some basic crochet videos, a mason jar project and maybe (just maybe) a recipe and a how-to project.

Peace, Love & Sleep

Hoosier Barn Chick

What To Stock In Your Pantry

pexels-photo.jpgI’m old-fashioned in that I believe everyone should have a well-stocked pantry.  This doesn’t mean that you should have every item on every pantry list that you see.  But, it means you should have the basics to some level.  And, you need a system for it.  I like to keep my foodstuff in the pantry along with all of the appliances and other items I need when not in use.  For example, spring form pie pans are in my pantry because I don’t want them taking up valuable real estate in my kitchen.

So, what kinds of things does someone need in a pantry?  Here are some ideas:

  • Baking Goods
  • Canned foods
  • Dried Goods
  • Herbs & Spices

Let’s break it down.

Baking Goods

  • Almond Bark
    • Chocolate
    • White Chocolate
  • Baker’s Chocolate
  • Baking Chips
    • peanut butter
    • chocolate
  • Baking Powder
  • Baking Soda
  • Cocoa
  • Corn Meal
  • Cream of Tartar
  • Extracts
    • Almond
    • Vanilla
  • Flour
    • All Purpose
    • Bread
    • Self Rising
    • Wheat
  • Food Coloring
  • Honey
  • Milk
    • Sweetened Condensed
    • Evaporated
  • Molasses
  • Nuts
    • Walnuts
    • Pecans
  • Oils
    • Canola
    • Olive
  • Salt
  • Shortening
  • Sugar
    • White Granulated
    • Powdered
    • Brown Sugar
      • Light
      • Dark
  • Yeast
    • Regular Active Dry
    • Fast Rising

Canned Foods

  • Broths
    • Chicken
    • Beef
  • Fruit
    • Peaches
    • Cherries
  • Sauce/Paste
    • Tomato Sauce
    • Tomato Past
    • Pizza Sauce
    • Alfredo
  • Soups
    • Cream of Mushroom
    • Cream of Chicken
    • Chicken Noodle
    • Chicken & Rice
    • Tomato
  • Vegetables
    • Mushroom
    • Diced Tomatoes

Condiments

  • Barbecue Sauce
  • Hot Sauce
  • Jam/Jelly
    • Apple
    • Blackberry
    • Blueberry
    • Grape
    • Strawberry
  • Ketchup
  • Maple Syrup
  • Mustard
    • Dijon
    • Hot
    • Yellow
  • Olives
    • Black
    • Green
  • Peanut Butter
  • Pickles
    • Bread & Butter
    • Dill
    • Hot
  • Salsa
  • Soy Sauce
  • Steak Sauce
  • Vinegar
    • Apple Cider
    • Balsamic
    • White
  • Worcestershire Sauce

Drinks

  • Coffee
  • Hot Chocolate
  • Pop
  • Tea

Dry Goods

  • Beans
    • Black
    • Great Northern
    • Pinto
  • Cereal
  • Crackers
    • Saltines
    • Ritz
  • Dried Fruits
  • Oatmeal
  • Rice
    • Brown
    • Long Grain/Wild
    • White

Herbs & Spices

  • All Spice
  • Basil
  • Bay Leaves
  • Chili Powder
  • Cinnamon
    • Ground
    • Whole
  • Cloves
    • Ground
    • Whole
  • Coriander
  • Cumin
  • Dill
  • Garlic
    • Granulated
    • Powdered
  • Ginger
    • Ground
    • Whole
  • Marjoram
  • Mustard
  • Nutmeg
  • Onion
    • Granulated
    • Whole
  • Oregano
  • Parsley
  • Pepper
    • Black
    • Red
    • White
  • Poultry Seasoning
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Steak Dust
  • Thyme

Pasta

  • Pasta
    • Angel Hair
    • Elbow
    • Lasagna
    • Rotini

Snacks

  • Chips
  • Popcorn
  • Trail Mix

I’ll cover more info about storage at a later date.  I might even put together a downloadable inventory list.

Peace, Love & Pantry Love

Hoosier Barn Chick