Thursday, June 30, 2011

Powdered Egg Questions and Answers

We interrupt this regularly scheduled blog post to bring you  powdered egg questions and answers.  (we will get back to was to beat the summer heat soon)
I keep getting asked questions about powdered eggs, so I thought I might answer them all in one place: 
Questions 1:  How do you use powdered eggs in baking?

Powdered eggs do NOT need to be reconstituted in order to be used in baked goods such  as cake, cookies, or bread.  Add the dry egg powder when you add the dry ingredients and  the water when you add the wet.   Powdered eggs work great if you are making your own mixes!  Here is the chart I use to help me remember how many powdered eggs to use.

In BakingAdd to the Dry IngredientsAdd to the wet ingredients
To Replace 1 medium egg (this is what I always do and I have never had a problem)1 Tablespoon egg powder2 Tablespoons water
To replace 2 medium eggs2 Tablespoon egg powder1/4 cup water
To replace 3 medium eggs3 Tablespoons eggs powder6 Tablespoons water
To replace 4 medium eggs4 Tablespoons eggs powder1/2 cup water
If you are replacing Large eggs. I have found that in most recipes the medium egg replacement works great.2 Tablespoons eggs powder1/4 cup water

Questions 2:  Do THRIVE powdered eggs taste weird? 

 I have been cooking with THRIVE powdered eggs for over a year now, and I have not noticed any weird flavors.  But at our house my husband is the “weirdness detector” here is what he has to say.
 “The only difference I can find between fresh eggs and powdered eggs is that when you make scrambled eggs (from powdered eggs), it is like someone with OCD mixed the eggs because they are 100% blended. No white streaks in the scrambled eggs.  Other than that you can’t tell.”
Note:  Last summer another food storage company (who shall remain nameless) had a super sale on powdered eggs. So I bought some.  I tried them and they are terrible!  I think they taste weird.  I don’t like them.  Now I won’t buy any powdered eggs but the THRIVE powdered eggs.  Just remember that not all food storage is created equal. 
Question 3:  Can powdered eggs be used to make scrambled eggs?


Things to know about making scrambled eggs from egg powder
1.  Using a whisk, whip air into the powdered whole eggs before scrambling. This makes the texture like fresh eggs.
2. When you reconstitute powdered eggs they are a watery consistency, and these do NOT have the gelatinous texture that fresh eggs have.
3.  When you first start scrambling powdered eggs  they do not look right. They color is a little to orange and the texture is all wrong. Never fear it will work. As the eggs cook they become the correct color and texture.
Perfect Scrambled Eggs made from Powdered Eggs-Make 8 scrambled eggs
1 cup dried whole eggs
2 tablespoons dry milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cup water

Place all ingredients into a 4 cup Pyrex glass measuring cup (or similar).  Beat mixture for 3 minutes or until completely dissolved and frothy. (I use my immersion blender.  And when I say beat I really do mean it. You are NOT mixing to combine. You are beating the eggs until they are all of the way dissolved and there are NO lumps.  Then you are beating some more.  By beating the egg mixture for a few minutes you are incorporating air into the eggs, this help the texture turn out right).  Add 1 Tablespoon cooking oil to a large skillet.  Heat oil over medium high heat.  Add the egg mixture to the hot oil. Cook eggs using medium low heat, stirring continuously until dry and crumbly.
Question 4: Once my can of powdered eggs is opened do I need to refrigerate them?

No, powdered eggs are shelf stable until reconstituted. Once you mix them with water you need to treat them the same way you would treat fresh eggs.  
Questions 5:  How many powdered eggs are in one can? 

236 medium eggs.

Questions 6:  Are powdered eggs really less expensive then grocery store eggs?



What to see the math?  Here it is:

Background info on the numbers
One can of THRIVE powdered eggs costs $20.99 and there are 236 eggs per can.  
In May 2011 on average in the US one dozen eggs costs :  $1.692  (according to: the US department of Labor Statistics

THRIVE Powdered Eggs (June 2011): 

$20.99 / 236 eggs per can =  $0.089 / egg. 
Let’s just round up and say 1 powdered egg cost $0.09. 

Grocery Store Eggs (May 2011) :  
 $1.692 per dozen eggs.  $1.692/ 12 eggs = $0.141 per egg.    
 So let’s round down and say that one egg at the grocery store costs $0.14

The sum up: 
One THRIVE powdered egg costs $0.09
One egg from the grocery store costs $0.14
 Questions 7:  If I make cookie dough with powdered eggs can I eat it without fear of getting food poisoning? 

Yes THRIVE Egg powder is pasteurized, so it is safe to use without cooking or baking.

Did I Miss Any?  Anything else you want to know about powdered egg?  All you have to do is ask.  

My favorite Powdered Egg Recipes:
1.        French Toast
2.       Scrambled Eggs
3.       German pancakes
4.       Crepes
5.       Bread Pudding
7.       Sugar Cookies
8.       Hot Chocolate Cookies

Other super cool things to do with powdered eggs
Homemade mayo with powdered eggs:  from

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Beat the Heat: Pudding Pops

Pudding Pops are about the easiest thing to make.  If you have not made them in a while it give it a try. Super fun to make with the kids and delicious to eat.

1 small package pudding
2 cups cold milk
Add ins of your choice:  We chose freeze dried strawberries and bananas

In a large bowl,  whisk pudding and milk.  Let sit for a few minutes.  Place add ins in clean Popsicle molds. Pour pudding into molds.  Freeze until solid, about 5 hours.  Enjoy

**the molds I used are commonly available at Wal-Mart and everywhere else. They contain 4 Popsicle and one set of molds holds 1/2 a batch of pudding, so buy two.

Monday, June 27, 2011

My Top 9 favorite food storage recipes

There are a handful of food storage recipes that I keep going back to.  I love to try something new but month after month when I am planning my menus it seems I go back to the same recipes. 

I love this recipe because it is so easy!  I have been making magic mix for years and I hated all the space it took up in my fridge. The first time I made it with powdered I was hooked. It is shelf stable (so it stores in the cupboard not the fridge) and it makes up so easy. 

2.       THRIVE Whipped Topping

I never have cool whip or whipping cream on hand, but I always want to use them.  This recipe allows me to use shelf stable ingredients to make and excellent whipped topping.

3.       BBQ Chicken Pizza

The combination of mozzarella cheese, barbeque sauce and chicken always get my mouth water. Pair it with a great crust and a sprinkling of cilantro and onions and I am in heaven.  After years of trying different pizza crusts (that were quickly rejected by my family) I am very happy with this crust.

4.       Ham Fried Rice

Our family pleaser recipe, everyone at my house love it so when I make it there is no “Mom I hate this, why did you make it?”  and less whinny at the dinner table makes me happy.

5.       Food Storage Salsa

I love fresh salsa but hardly ever make it.  I love the option of making salsa from food storage ingredients. 

I could make an entire list of just cookies.  I love cookies!  These cookies are a great mix of sweet and savory.

7.       Vegetable Risotto

My go to dinner.  Everyone likes it and it is has enough veggies in it that I am happy to sprinkle a little cheese on the top.

8.       Strawberry Frosting

 I love how this frosting taste like real strawberries not artificial flavoring.  It is easy to make. 

9.       Home Made Yogurt—Made from Dry Milk

Yes I am as my loving husband would say “a tree hugger hippie nut job”, and yes I make my own yogurt.  I make it with my dry milk and a yogurt starter (I like Greek yogurt so that is the kind I use)  and it is amazing. 

Doesn't it seem like it should be my top 10?  Well what is your favorite foods storage recipe? Suggest one to round out my list.    

Beat the Heat 12 Minuet Microwave Cake

So this cake is not beautiful but it is tasty

I am teaching my son to cook.  He is 6 and has been helping me in the kitchen since he was tiny.  Right after school got out he asked me to teach him how to cook in the microwave.  So we taught him how to make instant oatmeal, and then I realized that he really wanted to learn how to cook! 

(Rant about teaching children to cook, you can skip to the ***** to see the recipe if you want)
I am so excited.  I feel strongly that one of the my responsibilities I have is to teach my children life skills.  You know how to cook, do laundry, balance a check book, register to vote, buy a major appliance etc.  

When I was in college I was seriously dating a boy (who I did not marry)  and after we had dated for a long time and I had cooked for him a LOT I was leaving to do a semester abroad and he asked that if before I went if I would help teach him how to cook some of the foods I made that he really liked.  I thought that was a great idea.  By this point in the relationship I knew that if I did not cook for him he would eat the same thing every day (and I am not making this up) 

Breakfast:  Cold Cereal (usually Lucky Charms)

 Lunch: Ham Sandwiches (yes everyday)
Dinner: Popcorn (or sometimes waffles but usually popcorn)

Do you notice anything wrong with this menu?   Beside the fact that popcorn alone does not in my book constitute a meal there is a distinct lack of fruits and vegetables. 
So what amazing things did he want to know how to cook? 
Spaghetti: (boil noodles, heat sauce from a can, grate cheese, and assemble)

Burritos: (tortilla, refried beans, cheese, salsa)

Not earth shattering I know. But for him it changed his life.  And the experience changed mine. He was eating terribly not because he was poor (he was) but because he lacked BASIC cooking skills.  I know his sweet mother and honestly I view his lack of cooking skills as a parenting fail on her behalf. (I know I am judgmental, but that is how I feel) His sister who was later my roommate know how to cook but somehow he did not. 

To make this very long story short.  I decided then and there that my sons would know how to cook.  So I am super excited that my son is interested in cooking. 

(*******Okay if you skipped the rant about teaching your kids to cook you can start reading again)

Our first big lesson was today.  He very successfully make 12 minuet microwave cake (with a little help)

12 Minute Chocolate Lemon Yogurt Cake

1    cup frosting (we used lemon curd)
1 chocolate cake mix 
3 eggs
2 cups  yogurt

Spray microwave safe bunt pan with non-stick spray. (NOTE: You may substitute 2-qt microwave safe bowl. Place a microwave safe glass or cup in center of bowl to create a bunt pan. Spray glass and bowl with non-stick spray.)  Spread frosting in bottom of bunt pan.  Combine cake mix, eggs, and yogurt. Beat until smooth, batter will be thick. Spread cake batter in bunt pan; microwave on high, 12 minutes. If microwave is not equipped with an automatic turntable - microwave 3-4 minutes, turn bowl one quarter turn; repeat process until cake is down. If low-wattage microwave is used, cook until done (a toothpick inserted in center should come out clean).

Allow cake to set 5-10 minutes to absorb frosting. Remove glass and invert on serving plate. Serve warm with ice cream. Serves 12

NOTES: Experiment with your favorite cake mixes and frosting flavors for variety. I have substituted sour cream for the yogurt. I have also substituted a 21 oz can fruit pie filling for yogurt and sour cream. Cherry pie filling goes well in chocolate and served up with chocolate ice cream.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Pita Bread--with pockets

I LOVE pita bread, and a few years ago a friend of mine mentioned that she made her own pita bread.  The thought had never occurred to me.  So I gave it a try and it is awesome.  Easy and quick to make, it is also softer then the store bought bread.

Two options in pita bread:  pocket or no pocket.
I personally like both but usually strive for the pocket. 

Tricks to getting your pita bread to have a pocket:
1.  Let the dough rest after kneading but DO NOT let it rise
2.  Use enough water. The pocket is formed when steam is created in the cooking dough.  See how in the photo the pita bread has blown up like a balloon?  That is good if you want a pocket.  But to do this you must have water to turn to steam.  The dough should be very soft, almost sticky.
3.  When forming the pitas do not flour the counter top.  Instead spray it with cooking spray. This help keep the dough wet as you are not adding extra flour to the dough when you are shaping it.
4.  Cook on the bottom rack of your oven and only cook one pan at a time.  I have no idea why this makes a difference but it seems too.
5  The most important! Do NOT roll out to thin.  You are not making pie.  The pitas when rolled out should be kind of thick.

Pita Bread 

Printable Recipe

Think of all the things you can use this for: hummus, Panini, wraps, quesadillas, and the list goes on and on.

1 tbsp. active dry yeast
2 - 3 cups warm water
1 tbsp. honey
2 tsp. salt
6 cups flour
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Dissolve yeast in water, add the other ingredients. Mix well. Knead 5 minutes (10 minutes if kneading by hand)

Shape dough into 10 balls. let rest 10 minutes. Spray counter top with cooking spray.  To shape flatten ball with hand into an even circle, then using a rolling pin roll into a 7 inch round.  Do not make it any bigger than that.

Bake the rounds on a cookie sheet lined with parchment and set on the lowest rack in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes. This pita will be thicker than the ones you find at the grocery store. Wrap them in a cloth napkin until ready to serve. Makes 10 rounds.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Beat the heat with summer sandwitches Southwest Turkey Paninni

It is hot!  My air condition went out and well it is hot without it.  When it is this hot I just can't bring myself to turn the oven on.  I don't even want to turn the stove on.  So what do we eat?  We barbecue, I cook a lot in the microwave (watch for posts on microwave cooking) and we eat sandwiches.
A while ago I was reading a book and in it the heroine  was making dinner.  Panini made in her re-purposed George Forman grill.

I thought "I have a George Forman grill, and I love Panini" and the era of gourmet sandwiches at home was born.

Southwest Turkey Panini
Pita Bread (I make my own)
Swiss Cheese, sliced
Sweet Onion, sliced
Mandarin Oranges, drained
Spicy Ranch

Preheat the George Foreman Grill. Split the pita bread in half. Layer turkey, Swiss cheese, onion, oranges, and spicy ranch.  Top with the other half of the pita bread.  Place in hot grill, close the top.  Cook until the cheese is melted and the sandwich is hot.  Enjoy.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Elise's Strawberry Cake with Strawberry Frosting

A little while ago I was making a cake for a friends birthday and my 4 year old daughter was helping.  I asked her what kind of cake she wanted to make and she said "Pink".  I think we have maybe read the book Pinkalicious too many times.  I decided that pink meant strawberry.  I didn't have any fresh strawberries but I did have freeze dried. Even better I had some strawberry powder I had been saving from the end of a can.  I added it to my favorite white cake mix (thanks to I am a baker)  It turned my white cake into an excellent strawberry cake.  The flavor was clear, strong, and definitely strawberry.  As the cake was baking I thought this would be awesome if I had some great strawberry frosting.  I hate the strawberry frosting you buy in the tub it is so fake tasting.  I tried my favorite frosting recipe (thanks Ann for sharing it with me) and adding some more of the freeze dried strawberry powder.  It made an awesome frosting.  
I took the "Pink" cake my daughter helped me make to a celebrate a friends birthday.  It was gobbled up and I had a ton of people asking for the recipe. 

By the way this cake is named after my friend I made the cake for not my daughter who choose it.

Elise's Strawberry Cake:
I love the cake mix recipe developed by I am a Baker. This recipe is based loosely on her great recipe. Please go check out her original post.
Dry Ingredients:
2 3/4 cup flour
1 3/4 cups SUPER fine sugar (you can buy this or make it)
2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
½ cup freeze dried Strawberry Powder *see note below
Wet Ingredients:
¾ cup butter, softened
5 egg whites
1 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla
½ teaspoon almond extract

Sift together all dry ingredients. Cream butter, add dry ingredients. Add eggs one at a time until incorporated. Add milk, vanilla,and almond extract, mix well.
Fills 2 8 inch round cake pans or 1 9 by 13 rectangular pan. Spray well with cooking spray.
Bake 325 for 20 to 30 minutes. Test doneness before removing from oven. Cool completely before frosting.

Strawberry  Butter Cream Frosting
½ cup butter or margarine, softened
¼ cup shortening
3 cups powdered sugar
2 Tbsp. corn syrup
2 tsp. milk
20 drops red food coloring
½ cup freeze dried strawberry powder * see note

Mix butter and shortening together with hand mixer until creamy. Gradually add powdered sugar, food coloring and strawberry powder. Beat until smooth. Add corn syrup and milk. Beat until smooth.

* Note:  When you use a can of freeze dried fruit there is often some powder at the end.  This is amazing stuff.  It is instant intense flavor that you can add to anything.  I love to add it to frosting.  I find that adding about ½ cup of the powder is perfect in this recipe.  If you don’t have any powder from the bottom of the can you can crush some freeze dried strawberries in the food processor, blender, or put it is a zip lock and hit it with your rolling pin until crushed to fine powder.  I also find that the  flavor develops a little as you let this frosting sit.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Shout Outs: Freeze Dried Strawberries

 Today's Shout outs are recipes that feature Freeze Dried Strawberries.  I have just discovered that freeze dried strawberries are only a penny more a serving then fresh, and I am excited! okay maybe make that obsessed!   I love to use them when I am baking, they add a punch of intense strawberry flavor with out adding the moisture you get with fresh or frozen berries.    It turns out I am not the only one to figure out that freeze dried strawberries are great for baking.  Check out the best of what I found. 

1.  Chocolate Dipped Strawberry Meringue Roses from U Try It

2.  Strawberry and Cream Melting Moments (Shortbread) from No Recipes

3.  Strawberry Chocolate Chip Cookies from Baking Bites

4.  Double Berry Truffles from Candy
5.  Powdered Strawberry and Vanilla bean Macarons from Tartelette

Saturday, June 18, 2011

I'm on Pinterest

If you have not hear of Pinterest it is a way to visually organize all the great ideas you find online, and see all the great ideas others have found.  I have been "pinning" for a while now and I love it.  Anytime I see a great recipe, or a wonderful organizing idea I "pin" it and I can always look back and find it.

I of course have a board dedicated to food storage recipes, and well as lots of others. 

If you are already a Pinterest member you can follow me here.

Pinterest is currently and invitation only program. So if you want to start "pinning" send me an e-mail and I'll send you an invitation.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Price Comparison: freeze dried strawberries compareed to fresh strawberries

How does the price of freeze dried strawberries compare to fresh strawberries?

The average cost of fresh strawberries per serving in the US is $0.57.  The cost of freeze dried strawberries per serving is $0.58.  (the cost per serving for frozen strawberries from the grocery store is $0.53 which is cheaper still but honestly I don't like frozen strawberries so I'm not going to buy them even if they are cheaper, but in case you like them now you know). *see source below.

For my money the extra penny per serving is definitely worth the convenience of having strawberries that last 25 years on your shelf unopened,  1 year on the self once opened, have a great strong strawberry taste and are already washed, and sliced and that I don't have to throw away because they went moldy. 

Disclaimer:  The math to figure out the comparison is a little bit tricky. First of all grocery store prices vary from store to store and change depending on the season.  I have done some research and ended up using the pricing numbers that the USDA publishes.  This is the average over the entire US. I did do some math to figure out per serving costs so if there are any errors it is absolutely my fault.  (if you want to do your own math, good for you)  The other tricky part is that freeze dried strawberries have all the water removed and therefore you can not compare weight (which is what you would normally do to compare quantities)  The best comparison I could come up with is cost per serving and even this is not ideal.

FormAverage retail priceCost per serving
Fresh Strawberries$2.28 per pound
(yield 2 cups of sliced strawberries)
$0.57 per serving
Frozen Strawberries$2.12 per pound
$0.53 per serving
THRIVE Freeze Dried$23.39 per Number 10 Can  (Gallon)  44 servings or 11.25 cups
$0.58 per serving
$0.58 per serving

Monday, June 6, 2011

Tropical Fruit Nachoes

Do you watch the BBC TV show Doctor Who?  We love it.  Every Saturday night we watch it and eat nachos.  We affectionately call it "Nacho Who."  A little while ago I ran across the idea of having fruit nachos, and I thought this would be a great addition to "Nacho Who"  When I told my husband I was making fruit nachos he was not all that excited but when he tasted them he really liked them.  

The Nachos have four layers, 
1.  Chips--crisped tortillas
2.  Tropical Fruit Salsa--this is made from rehydrating freeze dried fruit, draining it and adding a little sugar and lime juice.  You can use what ever freeze dried fruit you want.  I find it works best to use fruit that takes about the same time to rehydrate, and is a little bit sturdy.  I like any of the berries, mangoes, apricots, pineapple.  I do not like bananas, and mandarin oranges, they are too delicate. 
3.  Coconut Whipped Cream-this is made from the amazing instant powdered milk, coconut extract, and powdered sugar.  Make sure you water is COLD.  If you don’t have coconut extract it is great if you use vanilla.
4.  Toasted Coconut.  I love toasted coconut.  I learned how to toast coconut from this post.  
Tropical Fruit Nachos with Coconut Whipped Cream

 Tropical Fruit Salsa
3 cups mixed freeze dried fruit (strawberries, mangoes, apricots),
2 Tablespoons Lime juice
2 table spoons sugar
Place fruit in a medium sized bowl.  Cover with warm water. Let sit until rehydrated, about 4 minutes, depending on what fruit you have chosen.  Drain fruit, pouring off excess water.  Add lime juice and sugar, stir to combine. 

Flour Tortillas
Using a pizza cutter, cut tortillas into quarters.  Heat electric griddle to 350 degrees.  Run each tortilla section under running water to moisten. Place on griddle. Cooke until crisp, flip over and cook until crisp.  About 3 minutes per side.  

Coconut Whipped Cream
1 t coconut extract
1⁄2 c thrive powdered sugar
1⁄2 c thrive instant milk, prepared and chilled
1⁄2 c ice water
Combine ice water and powdered milk in bowl and beat for 10 minutes. Add powdered sugar and extract, continue to beat until thoroughly blended. Chill.

*This works best in a stand mixer with whip beaters. If mixture begins to fall, beat again.

Notes:  MUST use THRIVE instant powdered milk and not the standard dry milk variety.

To assemble the Nachos
Layer chips on serving dish.  Add salsa and whipped cream.  Sprinkle with toasted coconut.  Serve immediately.

Shelf Reliance Shipping Increase

If you have been thinking about placing an order with Shelf Reliance now is the time! 

With the costs of fuel and other economic factors, Shelf Reliance will increase their shipping rates on June 8th. All orders placed on or after that date that are over $400 will be charged 5% of the product sale amount for shipping.

Through June 7th all orders over $190 will be shipped for $15.99! Order today by emailing me or by calling me directly 435-535-1470 to take advantage of these last few days with the cheaper shipping rates. You can also order directly on my website at Remember the last day to get this great deal on shipping is June 7th.

Lets get prepared!