Wednesday, January 17, 2007

My New Toy

I got a new toy for my birthday! No, it’s not a Treo or an Ipod, like some other bloggers I know.
Remember, it’s summer here. I got an ice cream maker attachment for my KitchenAid mixer!
I love using my KitchenAid mixer anyway. It makes me feel like a “real missionary” from the days when every missionary wife had one to grind the family’s peanut butter and make the Sunday morning sausage. It kneads four pizzas worth of dough every Friday afternoon. But this ice cream maker attachment puts it over the top!
It’s a bowl with really thick sides and a gel inside. It’s REALLY HEAVY (read, “hard to transport internationally). It lives in the freezer and I can have homemade ice cream in about 4 hours with about 45 minutes worth of work with no ice/rock salt mess. Most of the work is chopping delectable ingredients to put in the ice cream and most of the time is chilling the ingredients and curing the ice cream afterwards.
The best thing is that apparently Ben and Jerry had this ice cream maker in mind when they wrote their recipe book. So far we’ve perfected Cherry Garcia. Tonight we moved on to Chocolate Peanut Butter with Chocolate and Peanut Butter Chips (the peanut butter chips came air mail from Grandma).
The most difficult thing, and the reason it took awhile to perfect Cherry Garcia, is the math involved. You see, heavy cream or whipping cream in the US has a 36% milkfat. Heavy cream here has a 53% milkfat. So, I had to adjust the milk to cream ratio accordingly: .53x + .04y = .84 with x + y = 5. Remember those from high school algebra class? Well, I SURE DON’T! Anyway, with a little trial and error on a calculator I got pretty close. Wanna know how close? Come on over and try the ice cream!

Monday, January 08, 2007

WWDC? -- What Would Daniel Cook?

Somewhere along the way I lost my blog audience. Southern Baptists in the US who pray for missionaries and fellow missionaries around the world have gone elsewhere.

In the meantime, my readership has tripled. Why? Because this Daniel fasting is hot stuff. People from all over the western hemisphere are starting their new year with a Daniel fast and need recipes now! Individuals, churches, TV preachers, everyone seems to be into fasting right now. This spiritual discipline that was lost for many years is now being found by the church today.


I did have a few scattered thoughts from all I've heard and read and experienced lately.

I heard a TV preacher yesterday give a very elegant (simple and usable) definition of the Daniel Fast: "No meat, No sweets, No grains." I liked it for it's ease of use.

I heard of another public figure who fasts one day of each week, one week of each month, and one month of each year. Interesting, especially if you can look at it in a "first fruits" kind-of-way.

A very inspiring and yet practical booklet on fasting is The Miracle Results of Fasting by Dave Williams.

Bill Bright has a booklet on fasting that is posted here. It's also very practical.

Some things I particularly enjoyed during my recent fast:
1. Fruit juice concentrate made in the blender with a little less water than called for (don't defrost it). Throw in a banana. I used various amazonian fruits that I can get because I'm a missionary (na na na na naaaa na).
2. Grilled mushrooms. Can also be fixed in a hot frying pan and can be just about any kind of mushroom, although larger ones are easier to fix.
3. Baked sweet potatoes. Sold in my neighborhood grocery already baked. Microwaved baked white potatoes are good, too. So is boiled mandioc, if you're in a country that eats that tuber. After extensive deliberation with my husband, we have concluded that Burger King french fries are probably a "rich dainty."

One final thought before I stop talking about fasting in hopes of getting my SBC audience back:
Remember your purpose. It's not to follow a strict set of rules, and be more spiritual than the person in the pew beside you. It's not to lose weight. It's not to go on a hunger strike against God. It's to humble yourself before Him and spend more time with Him. In order to do this you'll need to turn off the TV, and most likely the computer also. (Probably the biggest mistake on my recent fast was not turning off the computer).

If you have experiences or ideas, please post them in the comments sections. Others from all over the US and Europe may benefit greatly.