Homesteading

 

The below are a list of my Homesteading Post links that I plan to add more and more to this blog as time goes on.  Farming, gardening, DIY projects, and various other notions.   (I am updating the below…)

Feedback encouraged!!!  And I will update this page reasonably regularly, I hope.  Check back ever so often if you are inclined.  WordPress, the blogging platform, won’t send out notices for Updates the way it does for new blog posts.

PS.  To follow what I do on a weekly, sometimes more frequently, basis:  Click on Journal 2020, here or at the tab at top, and enjoy… 

Black Australorpe, chick, poultry, homesteading

Black Australorpe chick

Raising Up Poultry

It has been chickens to date, both broilers and layers.  I would like to add in guinea fowl, for their tick-eating fixation.  Also… quail.  (EDIT:  quail are now a part of the homestead!)  Post links are in ascending date order of occurrence.  Quail have landed here early than guineas, but right now a certain pandemic puts many things into a series of question marks.

Baby Chicks are Thriving

Laying Chicken News Update

Arrival of the Chicken Coop & Tractor!

Chicken/Wild Bird Feeder: Pork lard or sheep fat cakes

Raising Chickens Part I: Intro and Overview

Raising Chickens Part II:  Welcoming Baby Chicks (how to order day-olds, how to prepare)

Raising Chickens Part III:  Trekking to My Chickens in Winter (Zone 5)

Raising Chickens Part IV: My Chicken Run and Coop

Raising Chickens Part V: The Bin, or Storage at Your Coop

I’m a Chicken Grandma!

Raising Chickens Part VI: Feeding Those Layers

Raising Chickens Part VII: Predation!

Raising Chickens Part VIII:  Is Organic the Way to Go?

Prepping to Sell or Donate Home Grown Chicken Eggs

Medical and Health Chicken Issues.  (Scheduled for September)

Book and Website Resources for Chicken Rearing (scheduled for October)

The Quail Have Started to Lay! Plus, How Quail Differ from Chickens

Incubating Quail or Chicken Eggs

Making Quail Housing

Processing Quail for Food.  (This may not happen until spring.)

Book and Website Resources for Quail Rearing (scheduled for October)

 

homesteading, quail

A Quail

Raising Quail Part I:  From Babies to Teens.  (scheduled for September.)

 

Mammalian Livestock

Won’t begin to happen until 2021.  Thinking alpaca, Shetland and/or Soay sheep, goats.  Not everything at once, of course!  No dairy.  I am soooo NOT milking day in and day out.  No posts in this category for a while!  You have to walk before you can fly.  Also considers posts about dogs, whether livestock-pertinent or not.   (I’m researching Livestock Guardian Animals, herding dogs, and potential pets.)

A Homestead Dog? Why I’m Not Immediately Getting One  Three main reasons right now – My aged cats,  No livestock other than the feathered kind.  No way to socialize and train them to other humans at this time (May 2020 as I type.) The post does detail what I’d like when it happens.

 

Finger Lime, Scallop, Recipe

Home grown Australian lime, just prior to plucking.

Growing the Vegetable Kingdom

Tips and tricks for getting the MOST out of your veggie patch.  Or your fruit trees/bushes. Fruits will be first, true vegetables second in the lineup.  I’m especially no expert on fruit trees yet — last year was my first to have them aboard, but perhaps this year will provide a difference.  I am HOPING.   For some reason, I’ve only started posting about growing my own veggies.

Gardening 2015 – May Report – Just what was out there, back down in the CT days.  And those Brussels sprouts didn’t make it, but the rest did.

Be Fruit-Full: The Citrus, Stonefruits, and Others Here.   Ongoing happenings with overwintering fruit indoors, and including my hopefulness for my persimmon.

Container Citrus Trees  – They’ve just arrived when I made that post, so no info on longevity in this post.  (Note, as of June 15th 2018, they are still alive, but not prolific by any means.)

Of Apple and Olive Trees – They’ve just arrived when I made that post, so no info on longevity in this post.  (Note, as of June 15th 2018, the apples are still alive, but not prolific by any means.  The olive bit the dust.)

The Australian Finger Lime (Paired with Scallops) – A sampling of a finger lime I grew here.

Raised Beds / Herb Garden Notes – My new raised beds, and stuff going on with the herb garden.

Growing Up / Harvesting Potatoes – The post also includes links to some potato recipes I’ve made, and nutritional information.  There’s also positive word on basil, purslane and delicata squash here.  September 17th.

Spring Planting Plans (2020).  This is at least some of my plans.  More to come…

Growing the Homestead (May 2020)  Getting up to date around here.  Also check my 2020 Journal as not everything becomes a designated New Blog Post.

The Home Planted Vegetable World in My Zone 5 Region – Spring Growing.  Early June update

Growing & Using Herbs

For whatever reason, they’ll get their own category.  Alphabetical.  You may have to scroll down to find what you’re looking for, since usually a herb isn’t (at this point) getting its very own personal blog post!

Bee BalmMonarda didyma.

Lady’s Mantle.   Achemilla vulgaris.

PurslanePortulaca olereacea.

WormwoodArtemisia absinthium.

I do have another website relating to medicinal herbs and usages, which dates back to the 1990’s, and focuses on researched information – I am in the process of converting to a new format and doing serious upgrading.  I believe this will be accessible through this account, beginning sometime this autumn, 2020.  I mean, with the corona virus at hand, it is not likely I’m going anywhere much…

Foraging for Meals

I plan to do more and more foraging, and will search through my past blog posts for other appropriate links, too.  To be listed alphabetically by primary forage material.

Foraging Backyard Highbush Blueberries

Be Fruit-Full:  Maintaining Blueberry Grove (Pruning)

Wild Raspberry Season and Reminiscing on a Past

Memories of Coastal Foraging

Putting Food By

Canning, dehydrating, long term storage.  Perhaps even references to quality products I’ve bought for long term storage.  Some years ago, but not that many, much of this town was out of power for 2-3 weeks.  I’ve lived through power outages back in my old suburban town in Connecticut as well.  While I’ll have backups, it will be nice to not have to worry much about going anywhere…  Plus, with farming and being relatively self-sufficient in New England, winter months don’t give you much in the way of good produce, unless you take action.  Organization will be by preservation method.  Gadgets at the end.

Dehydrating Fruit: Strawberries or Grape Tomatoes

Dehydrating Summer Squash, Onions, and More Grape Tomatoes

Asparagus Soup, Tom Kha Style (using dehydrated asparagus and onion)

Rendering Pork Leaf Lard

My Basement Root Cellar:  In Process

Kitchen Gadgets, Part I

Home Prepping for Emergencies.  This post is in regards to Covid-19, but has general applicability, too.   Some information has been superseded, but I’m letting this stand as a point in time (March 2020).  

Review:  Home Delivery Services.  Only one is pre-prepared foods.  I list three that are fairly national in the US, and then two local farm-fresh ones.  If you can’t or shan’t get out during COVID-19…

Seed Saving

Readying for next season’s plantings!

Saving Winter Squash Seeds

Saving Tomato Seeds (to appear soon!)

Maple Syrup

I’ve marked several sugar maple trees, and have ordered the equipment necessary.  Sap tends to run in March in these parts, but I will need to keep my ears to the ground.  This is an early 2020 project.  I don’t intend to make much syrup this winter, but if this works out, I’ll expand the operation in 2021 for sales.  I also want “maple water”, which will NOT have the lasting power of the syrup, but will contain maple flavor – which I love – but will be a whole less sweet.  Experimentation will determine how much I’ll cook that down.

Mark Your Sugar Maple Trees in the Fall! This information is a part of the autumn “Winter is Coming” overall post, so scroll to the end.

Another post is being worked on, that will be ready in May.  The tapping information will be best readied for NEXT year, if you haven’t gotten ready to tap by now.  My fault, but I’ll write it up as I finish up, and I’ll make sure this gets re-posted next January or February.  Pandemics or otherwise, sap will always run…

Outbuildings and Larger Farm Equipment

On the horizon…  Potentially blocking my view??

I am going to purchase a tractor next spring (2021).  Will it be a Yanmar or a Kubota?  Watch this space!!!  I’m currently Yanmar-leaning (unless I get a great deal on a used something…)  Current events are delaying this, I’d hoped this would have been a 2020 purchase.

Arrival of the Chicken Coop & Tractor!

Simple DIY Projects

Simple indoor or outdoor projects that can be useful whether or not you are homesteading, farming, or anything else.   I haven’t decided how these links will be arranged just yet.  Right now, arranged by time when they got done.

Refurbishing a Good Wooden Kitchen Cutting Board

Protecting the wood deck (and the house!) from grilling ash, hot or cold – this appears as the second half of the citrus tree update post, August 7th.

Refurbishing Wrought Iron Lawn Furniture

Killing Off  Bugs in Flours and Grains

Using Dissolvable Labels for Easy Removal – this appears as the second section of the Flours and Grains post.

Critters Stopping By for Photography

Just Because.  These won’t always get linked back to a post, because it is the visual record of them running around here that more or less matters.  At least to me.  (I will try to remember to date these photos.)  There are more I need to track down and link here!

squirrel--

Nov 16, 2018. He’s looking for the squirrel (ahem, bird) feeder.

purslane, homesteading

What I am thinking is a native bee – sitting on the purslane.  Late summer, 2019.

 

Books and Movies of Interest

For now, most of the entries here focus on food, since this started as a food blog and that’s still a major focus, but I plan to get more general (but USEFUL) homesteading books discussed on this site.  PS, I don’t have time to waste reviewing books I don’t want to continue in my life!  They’ll all be 4 to 5 (out of 5) starred books.  Movies may vary in how I report after them; after all one sits through those for around 2 hours…  Two hours of life you may never get back!

Too Many Cookbooks? – What I had back in November, 2013.  Just for the amusement and storage factor.  I sent many off to the Litchfield Farmer’s Market cookbook swap table, but I also purchased others since then.  Sorry, an addiction.

Madhur Jaffrey: An Invitation to Indian Cooking, and Edgar Tharp & Robert E. Jaycoxe: The Starving Artist’s Cookbook, Reviews – Back in March 2011, I decided I’d do a monthly cookbook review.  This concept lasted… one month.  Those and The Joy of Cooking (Mom’s gift to me) were probably my very first cookbooks.

The Science of Good Cooking and The Meat Book – Both by Cook’s Illustrated, and part of a series I posted late 2017, early 2018.  Part I.  (I finally got the hang of doing series… lol…)

Vegetables, and Perfect Vegetables – By James Peterson and by Cook’s Illustrated, respectively.  Part II of above.

Fish and Shellfish, and Sauces – both by James Peterson.  Part III of above.

The Flavor Bible – by Karen Page and Andrew Dornenberg.  Part IV of above.

Vegetarian and Vegan Cookbooks at My Home. I’m not a vegetarian, but I totally respect friends of mine who are. I find it a good and interesting challenge to cook for people who may or may not be able to or want to eat what I eat.  This is a list with short discussion of my vegetarian cookbooks.

Splendid Soups – by James Peterson, recent acquisition, subject to a potential future review.

Farmageddon (movie)

Cooking Recipes from My Own Crops and Livestock.  Also Including Offal & Locavore Odd Bits I Didn’t Raise

I’m not counting just going out to get a few herbs for seasonings, (or an egg or two, especially if laid) but something where what’s obtained is a major component of a dish.  BUT if you are raising your own livestock, it is a good idea to consider “waste-not, want not” when it comes to those odd bits.

Tabbouleh, from my parsley and lime.

Pickled Quail Eggs, Three Ways.

Chicken Soup, with Unlaid Chicken Yolks, from my broiler hen, and stock from a roo.

Slow Braised Rooster Wings. Slow Braised Rooster Legs.  Black and red broilers, first year of raising these.

Braised Rooster Legs with Wine and Sage.  Another go at this meat!

Rooster Corfu.  Corfu is a Greek island.  The dish was awesome, came from my own stock, and I’ve served it twice so far.

West African Peanut Soup with Chicken.  You can use supermarket chicken, but I used a home-grown barred rock cockerel.  So, some differences, which I specify in the recipe.

Pork Head Cheese/Souse.  Not raising porkers at this time, but one is not going to find pork heads/trotters in most supermarkets.  Trade with a homesteader?  Go in on a local meat share?

Soul Food Trotters.  Pretty tasty, and please never throw out those porcine trotters!   If you don’t want to cook them for a meal, seriously consider putting them into your pork stock makings!

Khmer (Cambodian) Pork Head.

Roast Lamb Head.

Tacos de Lengua.  I used beef tongue, but you can use lamb, goat or veal tongue, just cook the tongue from those sources less.  Or use pork shoulder / carnitas…  they won’t be “lengua” but they’ll still be good.

Sous Vide Bison Tongue: Braised & Pan Fried Style

Sous Vide Bison Tongue: Low Temperature, Steak Style – Two Recipes

Supplementing That Grid

Things are in various stages of progress here.  There’s grid-connected solar (that’s how one gets the rebate), and I’m needing to do the generator and the wood-burning stove.  I guess even grilling outdoors counts???  Grin.  Discussions later.  

Homesteading YouTube Channels of Note

This list is in progress, I try to include one video from each channel as a cue to something important (or in the case of Cog Hill, also downright fun…)

Miscellaneous!

Don’t know how this category will be used or not, but.  Right now, just general miscellaneous. And, so forth.

The 2019 NOFA Summer Conference  (Northeast Organic Farmer’s Association meeting).  This is the third of these I’ve attended.

The 2020 Massachusetts Branch Winter Conference (NOFA).  This is the first of these I attended.  Wooster, er, Worchester, MA.

The 2020 Vermont Branch, Winter Conference (NOFA).  I will attend, weather permitting. (I did attend, but while this conference was good, it didn’t inspire me to write this one up.)

Winter is Coming!  No, not a continuation of Game of Thrones, but dealing with seriously more mild winters than those folk did!  Autumnal preparations prior to a killing frost.