Burger Buns

I just realized that my vegan buns are getting quite a good review on VegWeb that I had better post the recipe here as well!

This recipe is somewhat derived from a milk-and-yeast burger recipe. I know it took a few tries to get it right. I served these a few summers ago with homemade veggie burgers and homemade vegan mayo – the buns especially were a big hit. And reading the reviews on VegWeb, it seems the recipe is as well!

Vegan Burger Buns

  • 2 cups soy milk (best if warmed up)
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 3 tablespoon yeast
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 – 6 cups flour (as needed)

If you have a bread machine… combine everything in the correct order and make the dough (steps 1 – 3).

  1. Dissolve yeast in warm water and soy milk. Let sit 10 minutes.
  2. Add sugar and oil to yeast mixture. Mix well. Add salt and gradually add the flour until the dough is thick enough to knead, but not too stiff.
  3. Knead for 8-10 minutes, until dough reaches and elastic consistency.
  4. Let rise 15 minutes.
  5. Separate dough into 12 balls. (If you want smaller buns, make about 20). Knead/form each ball well, and place on a baking sheet about 1.5″ apart.
  6. Cover with a damp dish cloth and place in a warm spot. (An oven that was heated but has cooled quite a bit works well). Let rise 20-30 minutes, or until the edges of the buns are about 1/4” apart.
  7. Bake at 400ºF for 15-20 minutes, until brown on the top. Best served warm; store in a plastic bag to keep in the moisture if keeping overnight.

Serves: 12 – 20

Kallie’s New Hiding Spot

Kallie in the window

At least this is a spot in the house that I expect she can get to. Once I found her in the wall, behind the air return grille. Another time we were watching television and the rest of the animals informed us that Kallie was in the ceiling. Sigh.

We had three house showings on Tuesday. The first and third were the same couple – they decided to come back with one of their brothers and dad. Their second visit took an hour and a half, and it sounds like they really like the place. I guess the dad went through the house “with a fine tooth comb” and the only thing he had to comment on was the condition of the front (cement) steps. I had briefly considered the steps… but that was $1,000 that I think was better spent elsewhere (the new 200 Amp electric upgrade, for example…).

I haven’t heard anything yet, and we also haven’t had any showings since then. I was quite determined to have the house sell this week – we’ll see what comes of it.

“Don’t Forget Us!”

Don’t Forget Us!

Niko and Kallie got wind that moving plans had started, and wanted to make sure they got packed as well. They’ve been pretty good packing helpers, really.

My house is on the market! Finally – a month later than I was hoping, but it’s listed. Here’s the online listing. It’s priced to sell – I may have been able to get more out of it, but then 10% of the houses in my town are for sale. We had one couple look at it yesterday, and they stayed for 1 1/2 hours. Someone else is coming tomorrow morning to look at it. Our Realtor is very optimistic that it will sell quickly – we’ll see.

It’s kind of nice having the house super-clean all the time. But it’s a pretty big production to get ready for a house showing: remove extra clutter, put the cats in a dog kennel in the garage, put all the cat and dog stuff in the garage… and take the dogs to the park.

I’m determined that we’ll get an offer on it this week. Chris is sure we’ll get multiple offers, which will drive the price up. Gee, that would be nice!

Home Staging

Dark paint?

Brown walls in the living room? What do you think?

I had a Home Stager come through our house on Saturday morning. I used to host her website, but she’s “unofficially” doing the staging now, so cancelled it. I like doing business with people who do business with me – so I gave her a call. And I’m really glad I did!

You look through Home Staging websites with before/after pictures and think, “Hey, I can do this myself.” And I thought I could too. But having someone else go through your home makes you realize things you never would have noticed – every-day things that you’re used to living with and wouldn’t think buyers would be turned off by… little things that make a huge difference. I had my list of things left to do, and the stager sent me a loooonnnnggg list of completely different things! And here, I thought she was just going to come tell me where to position the furniture.

For example – we painted the old 70/80s brown panels in the basement a few years ago. The stager said we should also paint the trim and metal support beams (there was an earthquake in Morris in the 50s, did you know that?) to match the walls. It was a tedious job – but it made a HUGE difference.

She suggested painting the living room REALLY DARK, which surprised me. I picked up the closest color sample at Ace Hardware, just to see. Here’s another picture:


… It is WAY DARKER in person than the photos seem. Actually, the color she suggested is a bit lighter, and less red. Here’s the paint card – she suggested Wheat Ridge, but the closest pre-mixed sample was Wicker:


So, I don’t know. We finished painting the kitchen today, with the color she suggested. I like the color. I think I will like the dark living room color, but I’m afraid of what potential buyers will think.

… we have a lot of work left. To make matters more difficult, I have a TON of food co-op work to do, and TON of website work. I told the co-op board that they need to find a replacement by July 1st… but that’s another whole saga.

Now, back to work!

House Part II: Before & After

House painting: before and after

… and here it is. I honestly don’t know if I like the color yet – but I’ve had multiple people tell me that they do. It’s growing on me. I went one shade lighther than the standard “sage” house color… this is “Frosty Pine” (how that translates to the different brands of paint and tints, I have no idea.) It’s “frosty” I guess! One thing for sure: it makes the roof look a lot lighter, and even better. And it’s not just the lighting in the picture – the roof was the first thing I noticed when I stepped back from the house.

We still need to paint the trim (white), but hey! There IS trim on the house now! AND trim on the windows (except the bathroom – which is going to be a bit of a challenge). Chris’s stepdad did all of the trim, and his mom helped with the inside trim. It was so wonderful to have them here for the weekend.

We went to work Friday afternoon, and finished the “grunt work” of scraping/sanding on Saturday morning. Finished priming on Saturday, and the first coat of paint on Sunday. Chris and I finished painting while the others trimmed the inside on Monday, and we were done around 4. (We still have to paint the garage though!)

The gutters are back up now. That was a puzzle game. If anyone reading this is planning on removing/cleaning/putting back gutters, MARK THEM WITH A PERMANENT MARKER! Because no, all gutters are not created equal. None of the pieces are the same size, and with our simple house and simple gutters we thought putting them back together would be easy. It took more than an hour today moving the ladder back and forth, replacing one piece with another. The pieces aren’t where they used to be, but we got them to fit. Whew.

Now I have a list of small, medium, large, and hired projects to be completed. On-the-market goal is June 9. Later than I was hoping, but we’re finally starting to make visible progress.