Sunday, November 27, 2011

Sometimes I don't have the brains God gave a goat

I made all the beautiful chicken stock. I got my outside freezer all cleaned out and plugged in and ready to go. I started moving stuff outside, and realized... I'm an idiot. I filled the quart jars FULL, and screwed the lids on all the way. I know things explode in the freezer when there is no where for the pressure to go. Did I remember that thought? Nope. One jar of chicken noodle soup, and two jars of chicken stock broke all the heck and back. They are sitting in my sink right now defrosting because I don't want them leaking all over inside my trash can, or the outside trash barrels for when Scott takes them to the dump. And did I manage to avoid cutting myself on a glass shard while I was cleaning out the sink? Nope. Stabbed my thumb on a triangle piece of glass. /sigh. In other news, the yogurt tastes fantastic, and I have another batch going in the crock pot. Made chilli today. It even tastes good. The first time I made it, Scott reminded me I can only experiment with one new recipe a week. This time he took some with him to work for lunch. Success!!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Went to Boise for Turkey Day. Tried to teach the grand baby to bark and growl like a dog. Only, my little weenie dog cries like a little girl. Well at least now she makes yippy noises. I did give her the top of the whipped topping lids. YUM.

I really wanted to have the holiday here at our house this year. I've been thinking about it since Mom Linda said last year she thought we should do it here. I made Jeff promise to help me. I've made Turkey Dinner once, over Dad's with Wendy to help me. Loved Jeff's stuffing, but I'd like to try the stuffing I call Wendy every year and ask... how do I make that again? It just wasn't doable this year after two surgeries in four months. I looked for turkeys and hams on sale to stock in my freezer. Nothing was on sale enough to make me want to buy it. I can get four broiler chickens for the price of on turkey this year. And they taste better. The only thing I really missed was having the left overs.

 So I promptly came home and re-organized my freezer. I had the neck and gibbets from a turkey I made earlier this year. Two carcasses from rotisary chickens I saved. The left over veggies from Scott's chicken noodle soup. I made 5 quarts of chicken stock.

It'll go in the big freezer out in the garage that I cleaned out tonight. I still have to have Scott move the plywood behind it, so I can plug it in.

And while the soup was simmering merrily on the stove, I made bagels. This time, they actually tasted like bagels. The first time I made them, I don't know what the hell recipe I was following off the internet, but either I didn't follow it ( I didn't) or it sucked to begin with (it did),  but I didn't make bagels. I made inedible hockey pucks. Oh sure, everyone all Tried one, but I found bagels with one or two bites out of the in the garbage.

3-3/4 c all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp active yeast
1-1/4 c warmed milk
1/4 c softened butter
1 egg yolk
1 egg white (optional)

Dissolve the yeast in the warmed milk. Add butter, salt, eff yolk, and mix well.
Mix in the flour, turn out onto a floured bread board, or counter and knead for 6-8 minuets.
Cover with a wet dish towel and let rise for one hour.
Punch down and knead for 1-2 mins.
Divide into 12 balls, and press two fingers through the middle of each ball to for the bagel hole.
Cover again and let rest for 10 mins while you bring a pot of water to a boil.
Pre-heat oven to 400.
Add two or three bagel at a time to the boiling water, and cook for 1 min on each side.
Remove with a slotted spoon to a greased baking sheet.
Bake bagels for 20-25 mins untill golden brown.
Remove from oven to a wire cooling rack.

Teh Spawn and I went to Eagle while we were in Boise, to deliver Spook's paper work to his new owners. I feel rotten after seeing Jess with her horse again.  I know she didn't want to sell him, but she was being very adult about it knowing we didn't have the money to buy hay for four horses through the winter. She walked into the paddock he was in and he was facing away from her. As soon as he saw her, he turned around and came walking right up to her and put his head in her chest. I felt like a jackass. He looks really good, and I know the new owners love him to death. She even sold the horse she already had before Spook, and made him her main ride. This pic breaks my heart. 

Tonight I'm making yogurt  in the crock pot and quiches.

Bacon cooked slow and crispy. I had a couple acorn squash halves from the other night, so I mixed them with cream cheese and added them to the eggs and bacon. I cooked one, and the other three are to go in the freezer to pop into the oven for breakfasts in the future. 

Monday, November 21, 2011

I didn't cook

Scott cooked this weekend. He made chicken noodle soup sat night for dinner. Sun morning was bacon and eggs. He even cleaned the kitchen. I love him.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Looking back

I was talking to a friend of mine on the internet lastnight. Made me think back on the things I wanted to do this year, and the things I want to do this coming spring, and wishes I have for the future. This winter I'm going to try and not turn the heater on at all. Scott cut down all this nice wood and split it for me, and I plan to use it exclusivly. Last year we set the thermostat for like 68-70 degrees. The heat was always coming on in the night. We have heated blankets. We can actually wear winter jammies to bed. The doors to the bedrooms need to stay open to let the heat in, and Jessers has a habbit of closing hers at night. I'm really good at stocking up the fire at night before I go to bed, and still have coals going in the morning. Scott tends the fire at night on his days off since he's up most of the night. The coldest it's been when I wake in the morning was 62, and that was when I was still learning how much wood to fill, and how little to open the dampers on the stove. By the time I get out of the shower in the morning, the fire is going again and warming the front room. It hasn't gotten to single digits yet, so we'll see how it goes.

Unrealized dreams
I had great dreams for this last spring and summer. I had over 100 plants started for my garden. Scott borrowed the tractor and some impliments from Uncle Mike, and worked so hard to till and furrow my garden for me. He brought boxes home from work to make my chiken coops. He went down and got the huge rabbit hutch for me from Honey Jo. All these dreams of growing and making my own foods. And then I had to go and get sick and spend 12 days in the hospital. All the plant starts died. No one thought to water them with all the crazyness going on with me. The rabbits got put on hold, the chickens on hold.

Dreams for the future
I harvested apples from a wild tree I found. I made applesauce. This so makes me want to plant fruit trees, and berry shrubs. I got appricots off the neighbors tree and made appricot jelly. My first attempt at canning. I have 4 pint jars in my fridge. I know they don't need to stay in there, but there they be. I want to get a pressure canner for all the meats and veggies I want to grow out this coming year. Salsas, and spaghetti sauces, and soups. Fruits and veggies dehydrated and just waiting in my cubbard waiting to be used.

I want critters. Rabbits for meat, and to show. Two types of chickens. Chix for eggs, and chix to raise out for my freezer. A milk cow to raise our beef steer on, and that I can milk once a day. Butter, cream, cheeses. A goat or two for weed eaters, see If I like goat meat for freezer camp. Some goat cheese is better that cow milk cheese. Two piggies, though it's almost more exensive to raise one than but the meat at the store. I'll know exactly what they've been eating though, and such a better taste.

I know this is all a huge ammount of work. I'd love to have a small section of the garrage walled off, or a small shed out side so I could groom from home. Then I'd have plenty of time to keep up with the animals, and the garden, and the food production. I already make home made bread. I save the carcasses from the chickens and the turkeys and make my own stock. Such dreams.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Scott has been busy getting things ready for the winter. He build a box for the cats in one of the shelving units in the garage. Just need to add a small watt light bulb for heat. I've seen Girr, Shadow, and Bastard in it so far.

Scott moved the fence in the the dry lot. We're going to water and throw hay to Dave's horses on the back eight since he doesn't have water or power out there yet. Here's the fence line before Scott restrung the wire. The Tee posts went all the way back to the tree.

Standing in the front of the dry lot looking north

Scott made a jog to the right so we can make an "L" shape where our horses can get down to where the water through is under the fence so all the horses can use it. That was we only have to run one tank heater and one extension cord. 

Standing in the back of the dry lot looking east

Looking west and the end of the "L"

In the back 8 looking south at the east end of the "L"


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