I am making some roasted bone beef stock while I deal with my head clogging sinus infection.

I am a the beginning of the simmer right now and noticed this new article had come up on the web. If offers some basic tips but doesn't have any depth to it.

#9, yes get a good knife. Get a few. From 2004 to 2006 I was rather strapped for resources and did everything with this knife and a pairing knife:

the knife

This knife will allow you to do a lot of things and never needs sharpening. It is also thin, has no weight, has a wobbly blade that might cut you. This knife makes cutting anything other than tomatoes and bread take more time and effort than it is worth. But it is what I had and what I used until I was gifted a proper set of knives. After that I was harder, faster, better, stronger.

Line #6 doesn't actually include a recipe. This is my favorite no kneed bread recipe. It will not make good sandwiches but it will make a great side bread for a dish or the core of a bruschetta.

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mise en place

I have all my mise en place ready to make a double batch of bread. Normally I only make one loaf at a time but someone asked me for a loaf so I am making them one too.

I also realized I hadn't posted the recipe I use for making bread. I have corrected that and you can get that right here.

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beef broth

It took three batch through the pressure canner but I finished canning all that broth. 28 pints in all.

Why am I calling it broth instead of stock? Look at the color. I didn't roast the bones. I used the traditional recipe from the Ball Complete Book of home Preserving book. It doesn't call for roasting. I am probably going to do a second, and much smaller, batch with roasted bones. But this will very much do what I need to do for some time to come.

A bit of a warning. I got some Mainstays brand jars a while back and decided to use them for this batch. Mainstays is the Walmart brand. The lids do not come sealed on the jars like the Ball brand ore most other brands. They come a separately shrink wrapped piece of cardboard and the "lids" are inside the "rings" upside down so you can see the seals on the lids. When I unwrapped it I noticed that three of the rims were dented even though they were protected by the cardboard. I had to use from my stash to replace them because they wouldn't get a tight seal.

I can't recommend these. At first I thought the extra packaging was wasteful but after finding the dented rings I figured out that the reason they are packaged that way is because the rings are so thin that they need that cardboard protection and it was cheaper for them to use bulking and wasteful packaging rather than invest in stronger and better quality metal.

They are also far more round than a Ball jar which means they take up just a little more room. This isn't a deal killer unless you are storing hundreds of them. But it was something I noticed. On the plus side they have no markings of any kind on the glass so they look more like commercial jars rather than home canning jars.

Jars are an investment. Rings should last many batches. Lids should be replaced slowly with Tattler Reusable Canning Lids and Rubber Rings. as you can afford them because they will be much cheaper in the long run than buying new lids each time.

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all the things

What takes 16 pounds of beef bones, some large onions, giant carrots a few stalks of celery and an 8 gallon pot?

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Last week I ran out of chili (pictured in the upper left). Why do we cook from scratch? Cost? Quality? Hours with nothing better to do? Tradition? Whatever reason you choose there are going to be times when you get lazy and warming up a jar of chili is about all you might want to do other than maybe make some corn bread.

So being all out of chili it was time to make another batch. I actually made a double batch which came out to about 11 quarts of chili. Which isn't going to enough to last year so I am going to make another batch of vegetarian chili to hold us over. From start to finish this took 5 hours. This was aided by owning two pressure canners that can hold quart jars. That is something to keep in mind when starting a large project like this. This five hour investment will make life easier for months to come.

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