Monday, January 24, 2011

Life is a Balancing Act


I was raised on "homemade". My mother made most all our food from scratch. Except for an occasional loaf of Sunbeam bread, she baked all our breads, cakes, pies and cookies. Mostly her recipes were German-Russian, however, she did like to try new ones from neighbor ladies, friends, magazines, and newspapers. I am my mother's daughter because I love to put on my apron and go to the kitchen. Soon, there is flour everywhere and I get lost in the process of turning out wholesome food just like she used to do.

My husband thinks I try to do too much. When I get out my noodle machine, he says, "You can buy those at the store you know."

I answer back, "But they are not like homemade with real eggs and Kingsford flour. Who knows how long they have been sitting on a shelf in plastic bags."

So, I get out my flour, eggs, and water and I make the dough. I use my stainless steel pasta making machine and put up my drying stand made out of a stick of wood on a stand with holes drilled strategically and dowel rods run through. After I roll strips of dough, I dry them on the rods. Much has to do with "balancing" so the whole thing doesn't end up on the floor. After the strips are dry enough to run through the cutter, I make the desired size I want and then again the trick is "balancing" the cut noodles on the rods.

My time spent making fresh noodles is greatly appreciated by family and friends and my husband relents, "These are much better than store bought."

Keeping life in "balance" is a constant struggle for me. In the busy world I have created for myself, I love to: cook, bake, sew, garden, read, write, and travel. I work at balancing my life so I have time for family and friends and, of course, my Blog.

If you find yourself with extra time on your hands and get an urge for fresh noodles, here are some recipes I like. Until the next post, live life to its fullest and keep it balanced.


(Makes about 12 ounces dried weight)

3 eggs

1 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons water (may need more depending on flour)

2 cups flour

l. Beat together the eggs, salt and water and then add flour. You may need to add extra drops of water.

2. Knead, roll out, and cut.



(Makes about 20 ounces dried weight)

1 package (10 ounces) frozen spinach, thawed, blanched, cooled, and drained.

2 eggs

1 teaspoon salt

Dash of nutmeg (to spice it up)

3 cups flour


(Makes about 15 ounces dried weight)

4 eggs

2 teaspoons salt

2 cups whole-wheat flour

½ cup gluten flour

½ cups all-purpose flour

3 tablespoons water




Sunday, January 16, 2011

Happy New Year!!

Last year was a whirlwind year consisting of: family activities and interactions (very important to me so I made time for them), traveling, special trips and events promoting and selling my book (which took a big bite out of the year), quilting (I made a quilt for my editor that started out twin size and ended up king size), and, I worked on my next novel, a sequel to "A Stranger to Myself".

I apologize to you who have sent emails and phoned with the question, "Where have you been? I miss your posts." I have made a strong resolution to post at least once a month for the year 2011.

I will post recipes and entertaining information about why German Russians cook the way they do. I will share quilting ideas and techniques. Many members of my family are interested in the family history and photographs I have collected over the years. I have a library of books telling the history of "Unser Leit", which means "our people". I am often asked why we are called "Germans from Russia".

This blog will reflect many of my interests: folklore, traditions and holidays, language, and medical cures.

The 21st Century is a time when the whole world is connected. We have cell phones, and ipads. We can easily connect with family, friends, and associates. The Internet, Facebook, Twitter, and Blogs are tools for sharing information. Who knows what the future will bring.

I want my blog to be a way for those interested to connect not only with me, but with others. Hopefully, it will be meaningful interactions and not just "passing along" information. I encourage any comments on my blog.

In anticipation of a great year,