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Candy's Farmhouse Pantry

Feeding Eggshells to Chickens?


"Should we feed chickens eggshells?" has been asked and debated for a very long time.  Some say yes and others say that if you do feed them eggshells they will start breaking their own eggs.

Ever since I was a child we have been saving and preparing eggshells for our chickens.  Especially during the winter when they are resting.  We have never had a problem with our chickens breaking eggs.

1.  All chickens need extra calcium in their diet at times.  This ensures a strong eggshells and stops the hens from breaking their eggs look for the calcium they need.

2.  Break down the eggshells into quarter size pieces.  This is easy to do with your hands.  Wear gloves so you don't get small cuts on your hands.

3.  Have your friends save their eggshells for you to use.  It doesn't matter if the eggs are store bought or from the farm.

4.  Sprinkle the eggshells around your coop and chicken yard.  They will love scratching and finding the shells.


Preparing Eggshells to be Used

  • Throw them in your sink and rinse them under water.
  • Spread the eggshells out on a sheet pan and let them dry.
  • You can place them in the oven during the winter month for 20 minutes on low heat.
  • When the eggshells are dry and brittle crush them with your hands.
  • Sprinkle them around the chicken coop and chicken yard.

Photos Courtesy of Getty Images

Grapenuts Toasted Cereal

Candy Kage"Grapenuts" cereal is extremely easy to make straight from your very own kitchen.  Please stop purchasing the expensive stuff you find in the stores and start making your own.  

There are no fancy ingredients to purchase.  use a natural sweetener like honey, molasses or maple syrup.  Do a combination if you like.  The sky is the limit when making your own natural "grapenuts" toasted cereal.

One of our favorites way to use our "grapenuts" cereal is to sprinkle it on top of yogurt.  We include it in our mix of freshly made granola for a snack.  The kids like to eat it by the handful.

Grapenuts cereal

All-Natural Ingredients:

  • 7 Cups whole wheat flour
  • 3 cups sweetener (honey, maple syrup or molasses)
  • 2 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 Cups Buttermilk
  • 6 Tablespoons melted butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon maple flavoring


  • Combine all the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
  • Add the sweetener, buttermilk, butter and maple flavoring.
  • Stir well to combine.
  • Spread out onto two large baking sheets
  • Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 35 minutes
  • Cool and break up with your hands.
  • Return to baking sheets and bake at 250 degrees for one hour.
  • Stirring every 15 minutes.
  • Store in a air tight container.

Freezes well.

Photos courtesy of Candy Kage

Crockpot Lava Cake

Candy KageAnytime during the year is perfect for using your Crock-Pot; some people may call it a slow cooker.  Doesn't matter the name, what your make inside is what counts.

Come along and make this simple Crock-Pot Lava Cake for your family tonight.  No special ingredients, just open your pantry doors, mix, pour, turn on the Crock-Pot and walk away.  This cake even makes the frosting while it cooks.  Don't forget to have ice cream on hand.



  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 5 Tablespoons cocoa divided
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1-1/4 cups hot water


  1. Whisk flour, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 3 Tablespoon cocoa, baking powder and salt.
  2. In a separate bowl whisk milk, oil and vanilla.
  3. Add wet mixture to the dry mixture, stir to combine.
  4. Spray your Crock-Pot  with cooking spray and pour the batter into your Crock-Pot. Spread out evenly.
  5. In a small bowl, mix cinnamon, rest of brown sugar and cocoa.
  6. Stir in hot water.
  7. Pour over the batter.  DON'T STIR.
  8. Cook on high for 2 1/2 hours or until toothpick comes out clean.

Serve with ice cream and enjoy!


Photos Courtesy of Candy Kage

Classic Cottage Cheese from Your Kitchen

Candy KageHow easy is it to make Classic Cottage Cheese from your kitchen?  The key word is easy and yes it can be accomplished from your kitchen.  This classic Cottage Cheese can be made in one hour and makes approximately 1 1/2 pounds of cottage cheese.  Use your fresh Cottage Cheese in lasagna, salad, dips, fruit and pancakes


Supplies Needed:

  • 1/4 measuring cup
  • 1/2 measuring cup
  • 5 quart stockpot
  • large whisk
  • cooking thermometer
  • cheesecloth
  • large colander or mesh strainer
  • large bowl
  • mixing spoon
  • ice bath bowl
  • 1 teaspoon
  • 1 cup


  • 1-1/4 cups cultured buttermilk
  • 1/4 tablet vegetarian rennet
  • 1/2 cup cool water
  •  1 gallon whole milk (not ultra-pasteurized)
  • 3 cups ice cubes
  • 1 teaspoon salt (optional)


  1. Measure 1/4 cup buttermilk. Reserve the rest.
  2. Dissolve the 1/4 tablet of rennet in the 1/2 cup cool water.
  3. Pour milk into stockpot.
  4. Whisk the buttermilk into the milk and heat to 95 degrees Fahrenheit.
  5. Add the rennet solution to the milk and mix with 15 stirs to make sure the rennet is incorporated.
  6. Remove from heat, cover and let rest for 15 minutes.
  7. Cover colander with cheese cloth and set over large bowl if collecting the whey.
  8. After 15 minutes you will have a pot of curds that looks like yogurt.
  9. Use a spoon or knife to cut into large pieces of curd.
  10. Turn the heat on to medium and let the curds cook for 1 minute.  Heat to 115 F.
  11. Curds will start to shrink.
  12. Cut large pieces into smaller pieces until you have the size you want.
  13. Lower the heat to maintain at 115 F degrees and cook your curds for about 5 minutes until they resemble scrambled egg texture.
  14. Turn off the heat and pour the curds and whey into the colander.
  15. Let curds drain and cool for 3 to 5 minutes.
  16. Mix curds gently with your hands breaking down to the size you like.
  17. Prepare an ice bath by mixing the ice cubes and cold water in a large bowl.
  18. Gather the curds filled cheesecloth and dunk into the cold water bath.
  19. When the curds feel cool, twist and squeeze the cloth to wring out excess water.
  20. Unwrap the curds and empty them into a clean bowl.
  21. Add salt and reserved 1 cup buttermilk and stir gently.
  22. You are now ready to enjoy your Classic Cottage Cheese from Your Kitchen

Photos courtesy of Getty Images

How to Make Wool Dryer Balls

Candy KageWhy would you want to make your own wool dryer balls? They decrease the drying time for your clothes, increase fluffiness and reduce static and wrinkles. Making your clothes look and feel that much better.

Just throw one or two wool dryer balls into your dryer. The wool balls help separate the clothes, allowing hot air to circulate around the clothes, reducing drying time, wrinkles and static.


  • 100 percent wool yarn. Don't use wool that says Super wash or machine wash. The wool will not felt.
  • Old knee high or nylons
  • Blunt tipped needle
  • String, cotton or acrylic yarn to tying
  • Instructions:

    1. Begin with making a ball out of the yearn. Just sit in front of the TV and wind up your yarn into a ball.
    2. Using your needle draw the end of the year through and under several layers of yearn to hide the end.
    3. Put the ball into the toe of your nylons.
    4. Using your string or cotton/acrylic year tie the nylon tightly securing the ball of yarn inside the nylon.
    5. Place the nylon into the wash with other laundry and wash on hot.
    6. Place the nylon into the dryer and dry on hottest setting.
    7. Repeat 3 or 4 times until your ball is completely felted.
    8. Remove from nylon and your Wool Felted Ball is ready to use.
    9. Just place in your dryer when drying clothes.

    These can be used over and over. Make several to use and don't forget to make some for your family, friends and co-workers. They make great gifts.

    Wool Dryer Balls
    Photo by Candy Kage

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