Ciabatta Bread

Timg_2177here is nothing quite like the aroma of freshly baked bread, unless it’s eating freshly baked bread.

This loaf can be made in just under 2 hours and is easy and really delicious. The only problem I have with this loaf is that it does not last very long.

It gets gobbled up super fast.


Ciabatta Bread


Dry Ingredients: Combine in the bowl of a stand mixer

  • 3 ½ cups bread flour
  • 1 teaspoon organic sugar or coconut sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons instant yeast
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt (non-iodized like Himalayan Pink Salt)

Wet Ingredients: Combine in a glass measuring cup

  • 1 ½ cups warm water (heat 30 seconds in a microwave until the water feels warm to your finger tip)
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil

Using a dough hook, mix the dry ingredients on low speed. Slowly add the wet ingredients, mix until it is all combined.

Set the timer and knead on medium speed for 10 full minutes.

The dough will look wet and sticky. It is and that is the way it is supposed to be. A wet dough will give you the bigger holes Ciabatta is known for. Resist the temptation to add more flour! At 10 minutes kneading time, the dough will be perfect.

Remove the dough hook; cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a clean kitchen towel.  Allow to rest for 15 minutes in a warm area. (Your oven on bread proofing setting is perfect)

In the meantime, prepare a sheet pan with parchment paper (or Silpat sheet), lightly dust with cornmeal and set aside until needed.

Generously flour a surface to put the dough on after 15 minutes. Plop the entire dough mass onto the flour and dust the entire surface with flour so your hands don’t stick to the dough.

img_2169Press the dough into a rectangle, fold into thirds, and then repeat. Do not knead the dough, just lightly pat it into place. Pat, pat, pat, just lightly.

Shape the dough into a rectangle and place onto the baking sheet. Loosely cover and let rise for 45 minutes.

While the bread is rising outside the oven, preheat the inside of the oven to 425° F.

After the bread has risen for 45 minutes, spritz with water and place it into the oven. The water will help give the bread a crisp crust.


Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow the bread to cool completely before slicing.

Shelf life: 3-5 days or until gone, typically the same day it’s made.

Healthy & Hydrated – The Key to Vibrant Living is being launched today on Amazon.

75% of the population is dehydrated and I want to do something about it.  I’m starting a conversation, a campaign to turn that statistic around.

Today is the launch of my book that discusses your body’s need for water, how it uses water and gives delicious suggestions for how to hydrate easily.

Learn the simple formula. Understand why your body needs water. Get rid of those mild nagging headaches. Feel good in your skin!

The body will pull water from all areas to protect five major organs. Do you know what they are?

Download Healthy & Hydrated – The Key to Vibrant Living Free to your kindle today, Tuesday, 7/26/16 through Thursday, midnight PST, 7/28/16. Available in most countries worldwide; wherever you get Amazon!

Follow this link: 

Get your FREE Kindle copy of Healthy & Hydrated – The Key to Vibrant Living  for a limited time.




Healthy & Hydrated- The Key to Vibrant Living

drinking-water-filter-singapore-1235578_1280Did you know that 75% of the general population is chronically dehydrated? Perhaps you are one of the 3 in 4 that need to increase the water you drink.

Answer these questions to see if you need to drink more water:

  • Do you have an afternoon energy slump?
  • Do you suffer from mild headaches?
  • Do you have dry skin?
  • Do you suffer from constipation and slow digestion?

Healthy & Hydrated addresses these issues and gives you easy, delicious ways to solve them.

Announcing the Launch of My New Book: Healthy & Hydrated – The Key to Vibrant Living

On Tuesday, July 26, 2016 I’m having a Book Launch where you can grab a copy of the Kindle book for free.


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You can get your copy on Amazon. It is sold internationally so those in Australia and the UK and Canada can get your copy too.

Copy and paste: will take you to the Kindle version that will be FREE on Tuesday, July 26, 2016 starting at 6AM EST thru midnight PST Thursday, July 28, 2016.

After July 28, when the launch is over, the Kindle version will be $4.99 USD.

Be A Book Launch Partner!

On Tuesday, July 26, at 6 AM is the official launch of my new book Healthy & Hydrated – The Key to Vibrant Living!

I am excited as I write this; I can hardly believe it is happening.

So I am reaching out to you today to ask for help in reaching my goal of making Healthy & Hydrated an Amazon Best Seller. It may or may not make it but I’m sure going to try and I’m asking you to help!

How? You can help by being a Healthy & Hydrated Launch Partner.

The time involved on your part is minimal. All you have to do is post the announcement about the launch of Healthy & Hydrated in your social media and or send an email to your list, family and friends and ask them to download a free copy of Healthy & Hydrated.

I’ll provide all the materials you will need to just copy and paste e mails or social media. There are beautiful graphics to share on social media or your blog if you write one; you don’t have to create a thing, unless you want to.

Here’s the best thing, the Kindle version will be FREE from 6 AM Tuesday July 26 through midnight Thursday, July 28. While the Kindle version is FREE, tell everyone you know about the book so they can get a free copy too.

Please help reaching a goal of Healthy & Hydrated being an Amazon Best Seller! I can’t do it without your help so I am hoping you will join me in this book launch. Let’s put the power of the internet to work.

After the launch, the kindle version will be available for sale on Amazon at $4.99 USD for a limited time. The final price will increase to $9.99 USD in a few weeks.

Sign up to be a Healthy & Hydrated Launch Partner by signing up on this link:

If you leave your street address (USA only), I’ll be able to send you a thank you gift as a token of my gratitude for your help.Your street address is not necessary to complete the form.

Then watch your email for your Healthy & Hydrated Launch Partner Resource Page!

Thank you; I am so grateful for all of your help.


Wild Violet Lemonade

Wild Violet Lemonade

Wild Violet Lemonade

This is a re-post of an article from last year that is appropriate for us now. Here in the South, winter has lifted, trees are blooming and we are waiting for a full pollen dump any second. Temperatures are warm in the day, cool at night which makes it perfect for wild violets to bloom.

Picking wild violets is a great reason to be outside; be sure to bring a small bag to carry your treasures in.

Before the violets go away, be sure to try this lovely Wild Violet Lemonade!

I was browsing blogs a coupe of weeks ago and found the amazing recipe for Wild Violet Jelly and decided I needed to go on a wild violet hunt.

The violets had to be picked well away from the road and not where dogs do their duties. I found a lovely spot with so many violets I picked an entire quart of them in no time at all.

Drying wild violets to prepare for steeping

Drying wild violets to prepare for steeping

I can’t help but to fall in love with this color!

So, to prepare for the wild violet jelly, the flowers need to be rinsed and steeped like tea. Use the same amount of water as you have violets. Measure by volume, not by weight because violets hardly weigh anything at all.

Wild Violet Lemonade

Wild Violet Lemonade

I had a bit left over tea from the jelly recipe and I wondered how it would taste as a “lemonade” so I popped some ice in a glass, filled it about 1/4 full of lemonade and added the strained violet tea, garnished with a slice of lemon and Wow! It makes a fantastic drink!

 Wild Violet Lemonade

Wild Violet Lemonade

Now, I’ve got to go harvest more violets so I can freeze the tea for later use.

Steeped Wild Violet Tea; see how deep purple it is? Add lemon juice and it changes to bright pink.

Steeped Wild Violet Tea; see how deep purple it is? Add lemon juice and it changes to bright pink.

Don’t you just LOVE the color?

It changes from deep royal purple to a bright pink when you add lemon juice.

If you want to know how to make Wild Violet Jelly, Follow this link to Prairieland Herbs.

Gleaming jars of Wild Violet Jelly

Gleaming jars of Wild Violet Jelly



Hoppin’ John and Skippin’ Jenny

Tradition in the American south has wide influences. In this traditional New Years dish, you can see cultural influences from Europe and Africa.

Hoppin’ John is a dish that combines rice and black-eyed peas. Typically it is flavored with a ham hock or bacon. But if you don’t eat pork, you can make a vegetarian version that is just as flavorful. This year we used spicy turkey sausage and it was great!

Stories go according to how many black-eyed peas you get on your fork, is how much luck you will have in the new year.Three peas should be left on your plate to represent health, wealth, and love or faith, hope, and charity or even luck, romance and money.

The meal is accompanied with food items that represent wealth: greens like collards, turnip greens, swiss chard, cabbage or kale represent “folding money” so be sure to serve plenty of greens on new years.

Carrots are cut into rounds to represent gold coins, corn bread is often served because it is the color of gold as well.

Tradition states to eat like a pauper on New Years day and eat like a king the rest of the year.

In some parts of the south, left-over “Hoppin’ John” is called “Skippin’ Jenny” after New Years day. After that, we just call it beans and rice, served up with a “mess of collards” and cornbread.

Don’t forget the pot liquor.

Hoppin’ John and Skippin’ Jenny

  • 1/2# Spicy Italian turkey sausage
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup minced onion
  • 2 cloves garlic sliced thin or minced
  • 1-1/2 cups white rice, raw (I prefer basmati or texmati)
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 2 – 15 oz. cans black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon fresh black pepper


Slice the sausage into 1″ slices. Saute in olive oil for 3 minutes.

Add onion. Sweat the onions (cook without browning) until they become translucent.

Add the garlic, rice and thyme. Stir to coat the rice.

Add the chicken stock, black-eyed peas, oregano, salt, and pepper.

Bring to a boil, cover, lower heat and simmer 20 minutes or until the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender.

Slice the sausage

Saute the onions and sausage

Add rice and stir

Add black-eye peas and stock

Bring to boil, lower heat, cover, simmer 20 minutes

Hoppin’ John