Archives for: February 2011
After three requests for custard recipes, I decided I’d better post them
This is my grandmother’s recipe. I wonder what she would have thought about almond milk!
7 cups almond milk
1 cup sweetener
1 Tbsp vanilla
Heat the milk until hot. Do not boil! Stir often. Mix the eggs and sweetener. Pour two cups of hot milk over eggs and sweetener. Mix well. Pour this into the rest of the milk. Stir constantly! Cook until it begins to thicken. Add vanilla and chill.
Notes: The original recipe called for sugar. I changed it to honey during my Health Nut days. DD cannot drink unsweetened almond milk because the carrageen upsets her stomach. But I can buy regular flavor almond milk without carrageen. One cup of honey and regular flavor almond milk was too sweet for me. Next time I’ll use ½ - ¾ cup sweetener.
Though this is called boiled custard, if you really let it boil it is not as smooth. Cook until it is thick, but try not to let it boil.
Boiled custard is great frozen in an ice cream freezer.
2 cups scalded almond milk.
¼ - ½ cup sugar
½ tsp vanilla
Mix other ingredients into the scalded milk. Pour into a baked pie crust. Cook in 325 degree oven for 40 minutes or until firm.
Notes: Instead of a pie crust, I poured mine into a baking dish sprayed with cooking spray.
Because I also added 2 cups of coconut, and because I was cooking it for my husband who has to watch his blood sugar, I used ¼ cup of sugar. It was plenty sweet.
Because of the coconut, my custard was thicker, so it longer than 40 minutes to cook.
They say that “necessity is the mother of invention.” I would add that it is also the mother of recipes.
When my Darling Daughter left to go back for her last semester in college (yes, DD is graduating in May) she left a half carton of almond milk behind. Because she was stopping to visit friends and relatives on the way back to school, she didn’t know if she could keep it cold. Besides, she was coming back home at the end of January – long before the expiration date.
I used a little of the almond milk making my Honorable Husband some soup, so I didn’t know if there was enough left for DD’s trip home. When I was shopping for her January visit, I bought another carton. I told her to take all of the almond milk with her, but in the flurry of activity to pack her car, we both forgot.
I managed to use what was left in the open carton before it expired. But last week I realized I had a half gallon of almond milk that was about to go to waste. The first thing I thought of was custard. My mother’s family loved boiled custard. It was a tradition at family gatherings. But HH does not like it. However he does like coconut custard pie.
Coconut is one of the few foods that is avoid for all Blood types and toxic for all GenoTypes. That puts it in the same category with pork. This is unfortunate because HH dearly loves coconut. Though it is avoid, I bake a coconut cake for him every year on his birthday. I had coconut left over from his birthday.
I decided to make each of us a treat with the almond milk.
All of the custard pie recipes in my cookbooks were basically the same. I prepared the custard, stirred in the leftover coconut, and poured it into a glass baking dish instead of a pie crust.. I used half the sugar that the recipe called for because of the blood sugar issues HH dealt with before he got serious about the BTD. I baked it according to the pie instructions. He loves it!
I made boiled custard with the rest of the almond milk. The first sip took my taste buds back to my grandmother’s kitchen. The eggs are good for me and the almond milk is neutral. Next time I will reduce the sugar a little. I don’t know if I am used to less sugar, or if the almond milk is sweeter than regular milk, but the only thing that keeps this custard from being perfect is that it is a tad too sweet.
This summer when blueberries, strawberries and nectarines are in season, I’m going to make a custard pie without coconut and top it with fresh fruit. My mouth is watering already.
All of these healthy desserts because of the necessity of using almond milk before it expired.
I have made an association between memory issues and sleep. It’s an association I can’t prove, because it is anecdotal. And as you know if you have read much about nutrition and health, anecdotal evidence carries no weight. Only scientific double blind studies are considered reliable proof. Perhaps someone has done a study about this that I haven’t read, or perhaps someone needs to do a study. At any rate, all I know is what has happened to me, and I am resolved to get more sleep.
If you have a good memory, you may be chuckling because this is not the first time that I have said I needed more sleep. I have made promises and made excuses many times. But recently I got serious, and the results were so beneficial, that I hope I will never regress.
When my Dad died in 2008, I was the executrix of his estate, and I took on additional responsibility for my Mom. I was also trying to find a job. It was a really busy time. Sometimes I stayed up late in order to complete all of the tasks that had to be completed. Sometimes I stayed up late because after being bombarded with phone calls and e-mails, I just wanted to be alone in a quiet house. In addition to all of the other stress, I was concerned that I couldn’t always mentally juggle all of the things I was dealing with. I forgot names. I got the sequence of events wrong. I made lots of notes to myself so that I wouldn’t make any mistakes. In addition to everything else, there was a nagging fear that I was losing my edge.
By May, the estate paperwork was finished. Mom was settled in a routine. The economy was so bad that gave up on finding a job. I became one of Obama’s underemployed and started my own business. The stress level went down and the amount of sleep went up. Surprise, surprise – my memory came back.
At the end of August, my Mom had a stroke that left her completely helpless and led to her death four months later. As the responsibility increased, my sleep decreased. Little memory lapses also returned. My husband retired during this period, so the only time I could be alone was late at night. It was usually midnight and often after 2 A.M. before I went to bed.
God began to poke at me about my need for rest – particularly with scriptures dealing with a day of rest and a year of rest. Matthew 11:28-29 made me think about how I was behaving. Jesus says, “Come to Me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. All of you, take up My yoke and learn from Me, because I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for yourselves.”
I also re-read in Live Right 4 Your Type what Dr. D’Adamo has to say about sleep.
So two weeks ago I began to stop whatever I was doing at 10:30. I finished the dishes, shut down the computer, and went to bed. I set my alarm for 8 hours after I actually got into bed. The first surprise was that the alarm woke me up. For most of my life my optimum amount of sleep has been 7 hours. When we would go on vacation, after a couple of nights catching up, I would be wide awake almost exactly 7 hours after I went to sleep. I recognized that if I was still sound asleep after 8 hours that I was seriously sleep deprived. This recognition was the motivation I needed to continue to be self disciplined.
In the past few days, I have noticed two things. First, my memory is much improved. To say that I am encouraged would be an understatement. Second, I am now waking after 7 hours of sleep, but rolling over and sleeping again until the alarm goes off. This indicates that I am gradually getting the rest that I have needed.
When God ordered His people to rest, he knew what he was talking about. I just hope I can remember this.
I got an e-mail Tuesday from a friend in El Paso who had been without water and electricity for a week. It has been so long since my last post that perhaps you thought I was one of those casualties of the extraordinarily cold weather. No. We have power, we have water, we have food. We’ve just been staying close to home and wearing lots of extra clothes, trying to do our part to avoid more rolling blackouts and stay warm at the same time.
Texans are smart, independent, and tough. We have the best economy of any state during this recession. We brag a little, but we have a lot to brag about. However, I will admit that we are wimps about winter.
A half inch of snow paralyzes a city. Below freezing temperatures lead to school closures. We tell horror stories about walking our dogs in 16 degree weather. My daughter said that she braved the icy streets to go to Wal-Mart to get bottled water and fresh fruit. People were stocking up on frozen dinners to eat in case there was another power outage. Laughter is good for you, so I’m glad the rest of the country is getting a good laugh at the expense of us Texans.
Even our wildlife is soft and weak. My husband has been refilling the bird feeders every day, and the deer are hanging around waiting for me to put out leftover scraps. We look out the windows of our warm living room and remind them of their cousins in Colorado.
I’m just as wimpy as the rest. I have zero desire to go outside and walk or run. Taking the dog to the top of the hill and back makes my hands hurt. I don’t want to go to the fitness center either. There is an air conditioner for hot summer days, but no heat. Yikes, those metal weights are cold in a freezing room. I get to feeling all comfortable in my sweater and jeans, and I dread changing into workout clothes and exposing my skin to the 68 degree air in the house.
To my shame, I have taken several days off from exercise. But I have enjoyed something new in the way of exercise. When DD was home at Christmas we went to a couple of used DVD stores looking for movies. What we found was an amazing collection of discarded exercise DVDs. They must not sell well, because we bought several for next to nothing.
I have two kick boxing workouts that I really like. I actually got warm enough doing one of those DVDs to get down to a T-shirt! I have an aerobic walking DVD that gets my heart pumping. There is a fat burning DVD from the 80s that I can hardly do because I’m laughing so hard at the clothes they are wearing.
I’m a Texan. I’d rather be outside running or swimming or hauling rocks. But when the temperature doesn’t get above freezing for two days, an exercise DVD is a good alternative. One more thing. If you come to Texas, I wouldn’t say the words “global warming.”