11 June, 2014

Food for Life!

As I'm getting older I have been thinking more about my health and ways to improve it. My journey started with sourdough bread and has lead me to Kombucha, Kefir and Fermented vegetables. I have learnt so much, I can't get enough of it and now I'm sharing my enthusiasm and my cultures with everyone who is willing to listen. One of my like minded friends share this ladies website with me and I would like to encourage anyone to check it out as well. As usual my life is so hectic at the moment that I am only here briefly, but I will be back.
Donna Schwenk's Cultured Food Life



20 April, 2014

Busy Times

As usual so much going on here on our little farm and so little time to write about it. The days are now getting cooler and shorter, and there is that possibility that I might have time to write up what has been going on. I thought I'd write up a list here now then come back and extend on a few of these things.
  • Our beloved Kitty died this year, old age
  • I had to put down my first goat on our farm, Mary.
  • Our first butchering on the farm.
  • More animal additions to the farm.
  • The house is progressing in leaps and bounds
  • I have been making Sour Dough Bread, Kombucha, and Kefir
  • I've had a successful summer growing season
  • Pickles, Jams, Vinegars, Flavoured Salts and Preserves
  • The Green House
  • Bartering my produce
  • Milking Goats and Cheese

It is the Easter long weekend here in Australia and it is now late and I've had friends, children and grandchildren here on and off for the last 2 weeks and I'm feeling so weary so I'm off to bed :)

12 February, 2014

Too Hot in the Kitchen!

The days have been long and hot and this heat just sucks the energy out of me. My garden has been producing really well and I'm dragging buckets of veggies into the kitchen to pickle, bottle, freeze, cook and just eat. There have been days where I've lacked that energy to even go out to pick my veggies and you know what a zucchini can do in a couple of days when it is over due to be picked, I've had to wheel the wheel barrow in to get my veg back to the house.

Well today I been in and out of the kitchen all day only because of the heat but today I have bottled sweet pickles, bottled pickled cucumbers, made a batch of kombucha ( my very first, so excited) cooked a huge pot of dog food, grated and froze kilos of zucchinis, prepared a loaf of sour dough and finished drying the chillies. It won't be long and I will be up to my elbows in tomatoes and making pasta sauces, drying and preserving tomatoes.

On a different note I have a farmer coming around in a day or so to but down one of my goats, she is fairly old but her legs seem to have given way and she is unable to stand now. I live about 50kms from my town and the cost for a vet to come out is like $200 ( just for travelling) so unfortunately my next best option is for a trained farmer to put her down.

16 January, 2014

Bee Colony Collapse Disorder

This season I finally got my veggie patch up and running, not as big and plentiful as I'd hoped but at least it is a start. I noticed in spring that there wasn't many bees about, just an observation in my garden and I thought maybe because I don't have many flowering plants around, but I live in a rural setting and there are lot of native plants. Anyways, I've had this concern for bees and even thinking of getting a hive and for the last few months I've been reading about the Bee Colony Collapse Disorder and it has just dumb foundered me, we as a society are killing our bees with pesticides and whatever else we use. The bees are getting all sorts of viruses because their immune system were  being suppressed in some way, there is no evidence of this as yet but if we, they, the scientist don't figure this out its going to wipe out our food supply.

I am no scientist or expert on what's going on in the world of bees but this is something that will affect everyone and I think we should all be thinking of the bees and stop using pesticides. More info check out these websites:-


11 January, 2014

I love this life

I just love this life on the farm more and more each day. The morning starts with the milking of the goats and the tendering to all the animals eagerly awaiting for their breakfast, the smells and noises as breakfast is serve to all of them waiting is amazing, you definitely feel loved.

 I seem to always be in the kitchen at the moment, which I just love, there is always bread to be made, morning and afternoon teas and lunch to be made for a very hard working and hungry husband. With funds a bit tight at the moment I make my own dog food, it's just basically pasta, veggies, garlic, stock and mince. They also get raw meat bones every now and then. Living in a rural area we have a lot of problems with feral pigs and kangaroos and farmers are allowed to cull a certain number on their farms which brings me to the point were I will be culling a few for my dogs. My kids bought me a oven smoker for Christmas and I'm thinking about smoking and drying roo (kangaroo) meat and bones which would be cheaper and healthier.

On another note my tomatoes still haven't ripened, I feel this has been the longest season ever but thankfully someone on my facebook call out has agreed to swap some cherry tomatoes for some fresh chook eggs, way to go. I've been hanging for the sweet juicy flavoursome taste of home grown tomatoes. I've just started to pick the cucumbers and it won't belong and I'll be making bread and butter pickles, so yummy.

09 January, 2014

Its Raining!

It's been raining on and off today and the temperature has dropped giving us some relief. The paddocks have that dry yellow crispness about them and the dam levels are dropping not a good start to the year. I'm sending some sheep to the abattoir next week, enough for ourselves and the kids plus one for a friend which will cover the cost of freight/slaughter and butchering. I might even think about sending some to the sale yards, we don't have a real lot of stock but if the paddocks start to suffer it probably is for the best.
Wally my farmyard cat loves to hang out with me when I milk the goats. I often feel her rub against my leg when I'm milking. There is also a hen that lays eggs in there as well, its a real family affair kind of farm. I often wander around the farm checking fences and animals and I would look behind and I'd have a trail of animals following.

This is where I milk and that is my milking stanchion that my hubby made for me, I also keep the babies in here for the night. I have about five goats that I milk sometimes seven depends if the kids feed off them and I usually get between 5-6 litres of milk.
This is where the chickens hang out, we are in the process of making more pens so that we can breed meat birds and maybe gets some turkeys. The kid goats also have this area to hang out as well, you can never have enough fenced off areas for animals.

I'm off to bed early tonight as I've had a few sleepless nights with restless leg syndrome, it drives me insane. I'm looking into fermentation as I read probiotic drinks are good for your system and could possibly help me.

06 January, 2014

Trying to be Frugal!

The zucchinis are producing well at the moment and I plan to freeze some and later add to the dog food I make, some to be used in fritters, soups, stews, cakes and hopefully I can make pickles and relishes. Whatever I grow I plan to make as many things possible so that I have a variety in my pantry and freezer,

I've been trying to stay away from foreign imports and to buy only home grown or organically grown foods. This was a bag of garlic I had sitting in my veggie box for a while now, it is from China, so I thought I'd use my dehydrator and make a garlic powder. I used to think more of price than product but I'm becoming more concerned with the state of our food that I'm thinking I am investing in my health when I buy organic wholesome foods.

This is what I harvested today from my garden for dinner and I thought I'd dry some fennel as well. Another job I managed to do today was go through my recipes that are written down on pieces of scrap paper, envelopes and cut outs from magazines and combine then with other hand written recipes into one book. I should post a picture of my current folder that I have that is overflowing with these recipes it is a bit of a sight. Anyway I'm trying to get some order in there, I love cooking and I have a lot of fantastic recipes but I also have a pile that look good but I haven't made so I thought I'd go through one by one and try them out.

Farewell "Buddy Surprise"

Farewell "Buddy Surprise"