Thursday, January 3, 2013

Spring is near! (well sort of)

This winter is busy, busy as usual.  Yesterday Terrill cut down a tree so my garden can get full sunlight this summer.  The goats and ducks are having a great time eating the branches and climbing on the fallen tree.  We intend on cutting it up and building a play area for the animals in our field.  The high demand of duck meat has caused us to increase our flock of ducks to over 60 ducks!  We expanded our chickens to include layers just for selling eggs and they are just about ready to start laying at the end of the month.  Our hens for chick hatching should begin laying in March and our hatching season will be in full swing!  We are hatching sex-linked chicks so the chance of getting a rooster will be very low - but we will always guarantee our chicks except our straight run rhode island reds.  They will only be guaranteed after 6 weeks of age.  The wait for baby goats again is almost over!  Since we bought a new billy this year we are not certain exactly when they were bred but we could have kids as soon as the end of this month.   We have several more projects to get done this winter so keep looking for more updates and stop by and grab some meat!  

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Grilled Pulled Pork and Ham Sandwiches

Yes its grilling season again and I have made a few sandwiches that I am proud to share the recipes with you all! 

Pulled Pork 
3-4 lbs of pork shank cooked in slow cooker for approx 4-5 hours
once cooled remove meat from bone (set liquid aside)
mix with 1/3 c pesto and 1/3 c feta cheese
sliced fresh tomato
(refrigerate the liquid, scrape off the grease and freeze for later use during the winter for soup stock)
mix 3 Tbs of mayo and 2 Tbs spicey brown mustard
butter both sides of bread and grill til golden
English Muffin Bread (courtesy of Better Homes & Garden pg 142)
warm 2 c milk, 1/2 c water, 1 Tbs sugar, 1 tsp salt in saucepan
(you should be able to still put your finger in it)
In a mixer add 3 cups all-purpose flour
4 1/2 Tbs yeast
1/4 tsp baking soda 
and mix together
add milk mixture to flour and blend for about 3 minutes
once it is mixed use your bread hook and add 3 more cups of flour (total of 6 cups)
Divide dough in half and place in two greased loaf pans and sprinkle cornmeal on the bottom of the pan and over the dough
cover and let rise for about 45 min til it doubles and bake in 400 oven for 25 minutes
or use your favorite bread

Grilled Ham
use the same dressings, bread, and procedures as above
substitue feta, pulled pork, and pesto for
Ham and Havarti cheese
add red onion and pepperoncinis

Grilled sandwiches have become a favorite lunch for us both!  I hope you enjoy these simple recipes! (try making the bread its delicious and easy to make)

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


Our ducklings are finally hatching and we have about 14 available now.  I am keeping two due to their beautiful brown color.  They start out at $5.00 each and increase $1.00 each week.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Cooking with Goat Meat

One of the many benefits to raising your own animals is getting to enjoy a variety of recipes you would not normally adventure out and try!

I love to cook, especially meals that are challenging to me :)  Lily and I have mastered making potstickers out of freshly ground pork chops, chopped onion, carrots, and celery - and seasoned with chili oil, fresh ginger, soy sauce, and oyster sauce.  This is one of our families favorite meals.

Lately I have been cooking with goat meat.  This tender, flavorful meat was intimidating at first but after consulting some cooking science books and chatting with one of my friends that cooks with lamb and goat often I cooked two meals that everyone really enjoyed.  I made goat curry and goat chili.

For the goat curry I followed and added to a recipe my friend gave me.  She recommended two seasonings -Trader Joe's Curry Powder and Penzeys Forward! spices. 

Goat Curry
In my slow cooker:
2-3 lb of goat meat (I used steak cuts but it would have been better to use a roast)
2 T of Penzeys Spices*
1 T of Trader Joe's Curry Powder*
1/2 c browned onion
1 or 2 cans of tomato sauce depending on how much meat you have
Cook this for several hours (4-5 atleast) until the meat easily pulls apart
Then saute celery and mushrooms - I like my celery crisp for added texture to balance the soft meat
Add salt and pepper to taste

We put this over white rice but it would be great on mashed potatoes or brown rice too.  I topped it off with sour cream and my homemade salsa. 

*These seasonings have several spices such as turmeric and cinnamon that contain antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties.  Turmeric is known to slow the growth of many types of cancer cells and there is many research studies regarding the use of turmeric in cancer treatment.  So try to get as much turmeric in you diet as possible!

Goat Chili
Again in my slow cooker I soaked
1 c kidney beans
2 c red beans
overnight in about 6 cups of water.  I drained the water and rinsed the beans then added enough water to cover the beans plus about 2 inches above.
I cooked the beans for about 4-5 hours until they were tender and added
1 lb cooked ground goat with
1 T Penzeys Forward! spice 
2 T garlic powder and
1/4 c of chili powder cooked together to infuse the seasonings into the meat
then add
1/2 sauted onion in chili oil
1 can of tomato paste
to the beans and let it simmer for about an hour

We topped it with cheddar cheese and sour cream along side our cornbread!

Let me know if you try any of these recipes


Wednesday, November 2, 2011

How to Render Our Pork Fat

Rendering lard is the process of heating pork fat slowly to separate the fat from any pork pieces. 

What you need:

1.       1 or 2 pounds of pork lard.  Leaf lard is best for pie crusts and back fat is excellent for frying.

2.       A large pot or commercial slower cooker

3.       Wooden Spoon and ladle

4.       Water

5.       Colander and cheesecloth

6.       Storage containers such as mason  jars

What to do:

1.       Defrost lard and cut into small pieces.  Remove kidney if still attached.

2.       Add ¼ c of water per pound of fat and then add the pork fat to the pot or cooker and let it heat for about an hour on medium high.

3.       You may want to turn on a vent or open a window.

4.       After about an hour stir the fat and make sure it doesn’t start to burn.  As the fat melts it will begin to crackle and separate from the pork bits.  Be careful not to get burned from the popping fat.

5.       Now stir every ten minutes until all the bits have crackled and separated from the fat and sink to the bottom of the pot.  

6.       Be sure not to leave your lard too long or it will burn and have a pork flavor.

7.       Let the lard cool slightly and pour through a colander lined with cheesecloth.  Pork bits are still soft and can be fried for use as salad toppings, etc.

8.       The melted pork fat can then be ladled into your storage containers and will remain slightly yellow until it solidifies as it cools.  Store in refrigerator or freezer.

I hope you enjoy farm fresh lard for all your baking and frying needs!  Let me know if you have any questions regarding this process.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Spring is finally here!

The nice weather is here!  All our animals are happy to finally be out to pasture enjoying the fresh new grass and clover we planted last year in our pasture.  The momma goats begin eating the tallest grass they can find and their kids nibble on the clover.  We are keeping three kids and already have four with deposits on them.  We have six does left which we will raise up for meat until someone is ready to purchse them. 
Our free range roosters are growing fast with the extra nutrients in the ground.  They have been protected by our Livestock Guardian Dogs from hawks and other preditors and will be ready to sell here shortly. 
We bought five more piglets that grew fast in all this nice weather.  We expect to have them processed by the end of the summer and the older three will be processed in July. 

Our new regular open hours are now from 3:30pm-7pm but you are welcome to stop by any time or call for an appointment.  Now is a great time to stop by and get a tour - there is a good chance you can even pet a goat!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Our First Farmer's Market

What a perfect way to start the season!  The weather wasn't the best but that didn't stop tons of shoppers from stopping by.  We met so many interesting people and everyone seemed really excited to try our pork.  Once the customers showed up at 9am the time just flew by without a drop of rain!  People were surprised to see that we brought the meat with us but the cooler kept everything frozen rock solid.  The main question we were asked was how is the meat packaged because most farm fresh pork comes in either half or whole hog.  So we showed them our individually packaged chops/steaks and our sausage, sliced ham, and sausage all in one pound packages.  That made their shopping easy and most everyone that stopped by bought a package or two.  We sold out of our chops and tenderloins that we brought so we will be bringing more next time.  I hope we get a lot of return customers and many new ones next weekend.  We are putting together a new display for our chicks, ducks, and goats so everyone can see all the animals we raise. 

Hope to see you there!