HELLO MY NAME IS MICHELE - I have always lived a simple lifestyle filled with passion and a desire to change things. I have dedicated half my life to creating everyday household products, beauty aids, herbal remedies and mouth watering gourmet foods & confections mostly from plants and items I grew & crafted myself.
Growing organically, harvesting, and preparing some of the daily fruits, nuts, herbs, vegetables, mushrooms, dairy, eggs, and even meats that we consume has always been important to me! Taking part in this on a daily basis with my own two hands in my own suburban backyard is something I am most proud of. Give me a shovel and I'll give you a fully functioning, gourmet, biodiverse, "Edible & Herbal Backyard Food Forest!"
Give me a Harvest, and I’ll give you an entire years worth of everyday Homemade Necessities, Scrumptious Gourmet Meals, and useful Holiday Gifts. These include classic holiday goodies and helpful items such as lip balms, deodorants, cleaning supplies, pet products, muscle rubs, cold and flu tonics, and even scrumptiously chewy and authentic daily loaves of SOURDOUGH BREAD FRESH FROM THE OVEN!
MY EDIBLE & HERBAL BACKYARD FOOD FOREST - I grew up in a gardening family and have grown food all my life no matter where I lived. After graduating master gardening classes, I spent the past 15 years designing a 90% edible and herbal landscape right in the middle of my suburban, Pennsylvania, half acre backyard. I have everything you can imagine planted including hundreds of fruits, herbs, vegetables, nuts, roots, companion plants, perennials, mushrooms, and extremely fragrant flowers! All compacted together into one self sufficient echo-system! My main objective has always been to become more self sustaining and to focus on plants that grow well in our PA/COLD climate! The results have been OUTSTANDING and continue to amaze me! I never imagined it would work this well! Nature already knows - we just need to listen!!!
THIS IS A LIFESTYLE TO ME...AND A JOB THAT I LOVE - It is a day to day ritual that I have simplified tremendously. It is a lifestyle that brings stability to our family that everyone benefits from. It is a lifestyle that has saved us thousands of dollars a year. In an emergency situation, we never worry about getting to the store because we basically have everything we need at home already. Now, I merely buy meat and other staple ingredients that I cannot grow myself in bulk from as many local sources as possible. I grow just enough of my own ingredients and supplies that will last us for one entire year, then I start the whole process all over again in January. It is well planned, journaled and even broken down monthly.
This lifestyle has given me an understanding of what goes into the foods we eat and the everyday products we use. In my eyes, it's just me being a mom. Every year I work hard to expand my edible & herbal food forest as well as continue to create new recipes, while perfecting the old! I tweak & refine the same routine year after year! This is my life, my passion, my joy, and my soul. This is what I was born to do and now I will share it with all of you - Starting with how to make your own delicious daily or weekly loaves of sourdough bread!
A MESSAGE TO STUDENTS - I figured why not start with the beast of all breads - SOURDOUGH - one of the most universally loved yet most challenging and feared breads of all time. The facts are out there: the health benefits from authentic sourdough bread made from a sourdough starter compared to store bought; well, there is just no comparison. Even people with gluten intolerance should look into this - you will be pleasantly surprised!
I heard what you said about sourdough recipes being impossible, hard to understand, overly formulated, and confusingly mathematical. I took care of that for you and simplified it in a fun and educational way.
Pay close attention to the starter: ace the starter and you will be serving warm bread in just a few days. Ace the entire recipe and it will open up a whole new world of bread baking for you. Good luck; I will be here if you need me!
The future is worth the patience of the present.
The Homemade Gardener