Making & Growing Your Own Food

The definitive website on plants & horticulture

Making & Growing Your Own Food

  • Making Cheese
  • Making Yogurts
  • Making Butter & Milk Products
  • Making Breads
  • Making Preparing Meats
  • Making Condiments
  • Making Vegetable Mixes
  • Making Sauces & Relishes
  • Making Herbal Teas
  • Making Juices & Soda
  • Making Beer & Wine
  • Making Clothing & Household Goods

The Benefits

  • You will save money.
  • Provides peace & relaxation
  • Develops a sense of pride.
  • You can avoid chemicals used on store bought food.
  • Protection against harder economic times.
  • Good Exercise
  • It can create better health.
  • The taste!

Making Cheese - Cheese is a generic term for a diverse group of milk-based food products. Cheese is produced throughout the world in wide-ranging flavors, textures, and forms.

Cheese consists of proteins and fat from milk, usually the milk of cows, buffalo, goats, or sheep. It is produced by coagulation of the milk protein casein. Typically, the milk is acidified and addition of the enzyme rennet causes coagulation. The solids are separated and pressed into final form. Some cheeses have molds on the rind or throughout. Most cheeses melt at cooking temperature.

Hundreds of types of cheese are produced. Their styles, textures and flavors depend on the origin of the milk (including the animal's diet), whether they have been pasteurized, the butterfat content, the bacteria and mold, the processing, and aging. Herbs, spices, or wood smoke may be used as flavoring agents.

Making Yogurts - Yogurt is a well-known source of nutrients and good bacteria that contribute to better digestive health. When eaten regularly, yogurt has been shown to relieve symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, prevent yeast infections by maintaining the balance of yeast in the body, and help prevent urinary tract infections. The key to much of this is in the unique active cultures yogurt contains. These are good bacteria that break down the lactose in milk, giving yogurt it's creamy texture and leaving less milk sugar to process.

Making Butter & Milk Products - Butter is a byproduct of milk which is made by churning milk or cream. It's mostly made from cow's milk though milk from goat, buffalo, and sheep may also be used. Salt, coloring, flavoring, and preservatives may be added before the butter is packed.

Making buttermilk, yogurt, butter and soft cheeses at home is not hard to do. All can be made with ingredients readily available. The resulting products will taste fresher, and you can be assured that the product will be without fillers, preservatives and other unknown ingredients. For equipment, all you'll need is a couple of quart canning jars with lids and rings, and cheesecloth.

Making Breads - Bread is a staple food in some countries. It is prepared by cooking the dough of flour and water and other ingredients. Bread maybe leavened or unleavened, the oldest breads are unleavened; they are made by mixing flour with water and then baking, frying, or steaming it. Examples include matzos and tortillas. The addition of yeast, baking soda, or other leavening agent to the flour-and-water mixture allows the dough to expand, or rise, and gives the bread a lighter, finer texture than unleavened types.

Fresh homemade bread smells great when baking! It has a wonderful taste and you know what was used to make it. It is inexpensive to make and provides to a healthy diet.

Making Prepared Meats - Meats are cured one of three ways: Dry, Wet or Combination. Dry is basically the salting method with the addition of nitrates. Before smoking the salt with nitrates had to be rubbed in ham or other meat cuts which was a tough job because it could only be done by hand.

The wet curing method, sometimes called brine (salt and water), sweet pickle (sugar added), or immersion curing has been traditionally used for larger cuts of meat like butts or hams that were smoked. It is accomplished by placing meats in a wet curing solution (water, salt, nitrites, sometimes sugar). Sugar is added only when curing at refrigerator temperatures, otherwise it may begin fermentation and start to spoil the meat. The combination method is of course the combination of both methods.

Making Condiments - Homemade condiments are a great alternative to unhealthy store-bought condiments is to make your own relishes and sauces at home. The added benefit is that they'll be much less expensive than the grocery store variety.

Making Vegetable Mixes - By using your home grown vegetables and canning and freezing them mixed, you can greatly increase the variety of food for the dinner table. In addition you know where they came from and what was not sprayed on them.

Making Sauces & Relishes - Sauces give extra kick to your recipes and many can successfully be made at home. Learn how to make and cook with such condiments as ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, balsamic vinegar, chutney, honey, marinades, mayonnaise, mustard, and more. A relish is any fruit or vegetable that is chopped, and cooked or pickled. The general taste of relish should be mild or hot, sweet or savory, and always feature a strong flavor. Some relishes are much thicker than others are. Choosing a thick or thin variety is mostly matter of personal preference along with taking into consideration the types of foods you will be using the relish with.

Making Herbal Teas - Herbal tea benefits our health and overall wellbeing. For thousands of years in almost every culture herbal tea has been used to balance and heal the body. It is refreshing and can be brewed from fresh sprigs from your garden or made using dry herbs. Fresh herbs are rich in vitamins and flavor and can be grown just about anywhere.

Making Juices & Soda - You'd be surprised at how much sugar or artificial sweetener is contained within many of those "zero sugar" juices & sodas on the market. Why not save yourself the extra dollars and your family the extra calories by making juices & Sodas yourself? Fruits are relatively affordable - especially if you buy them locally and in season - so buying your own and making your own juices & sodas is a healthier and more affordable option.

Making Beer & Wine - The advantage that home brewing beer offers over purchasing ready-made beer commercially is you will not be limited by the choice on the shelf in front of you. Would you like this beer to be just a little richer? Do you want to flavor another one? What taste - banana? Plum? Pumpkin?

When making wine, you will be using all natural and organic ingredients. There will be no additives in your wine. Idea Marketers also says that drinking one or two glasses of wine per day will help promote a longer life and a stronger heart.

Making Clothing & Household Goods - Homemade soap has got many benefits over your commercial soaps. And of course, it always is so much nicer using something that you've made and can be proud of. By sewing your own clothing, you take back control over the factors that prevent you from making a clothing purchase that you will be happy with. You will quickly discover that there are many benefits to sewing your own clothes, affecting your self-image, your purse and the durability of your wardrobe. In addition, it saves you money. There are many other household items that are easy to make such as cleaners, polishes, bug replants, furniture and more.

Living on a Few Acres

A Homesteader's Guide

  • Living in the Country
  • The Tradeoffs
  • Realities
  • Change of Lifestyle
  • Family Satisfaction
  • Selecting Location
  • Finding What you Want
  • Pulling the Trigger
  • Remodeling House
  • Building New House
  • Out Buildings
  • Landscaping
  • Land Improvement
  • Water
  • Power
  • Tips
  • Orchards
  • Grapes
  • Berries
  • Vegetables
  • Nut Trees
  • Ornamental Plants
  • Wild Plant Harvesting
  • Herbs
  • Hay
  • Grains
  • Year Round Greenhouse
  • Growing Organic
  • Christmas Trees
  • Naturalized Plots
  • Woodlots
  • Farm Stand
  • Pigs
  • Goats
  • Chickens
  • Gamebirds
  • Sheep
  • Alpaca/Llama
  • Cattle
  • Emu, Ostrich & Rhea
  • Honeybees
  • Mason Bees
  • Earthworms
  • Compost
  • Mulch
  • Wildbirds
  • Insects
  • Cheese
  • Yogurts
  • Butter
  • Breads
  • Preparing Meats
  • Beer & Wine
  • Clothing & Household Goods
  • Canning
  • Freezing
  • Drying
  • Root Cellar
  • Tractors & Implements
  • Hand Tools
  • Storage Tools
  • Harvest Kitchen
  • Splitting the Wood
  • Putting the Garden to Bed
  • Sealing the House
  • Winter Chores