Sunday, November 8, 2009

A varied menu of jobs and food

The thing about the getting ready for winter jobs is, none of them are really so big as to take a full day.

Yesterday we did banking, placing plastic and insulation and hay bales up against the side of the house where the rubble foundation leaks a lot of cold air. This, and a hot air duct that plays down there, and pipe insulation, helps keep the kitchen pipes from freezing when it gets to 25 below.

It doesn't probably hurt that they are right up agaisnt the part of the kitchen floor where the wood stove sits.

Then we took care of the dry bean crop. Aimee planted six different kinds and they ere not easy to tell apart, and so I decided to thresh them all together for soup mix, rather than separate them. The result is an interesting mix of colors. This is my threshing set-up. It worked fine, but we still have to pick through the beans and wash them to removes stones and debris before we use them. We got around twelve pounds or so.

Then I made sausage out of one of the hindquarters of the ram I slaughtered last week, which has been aging well this last week, first in the freezer then the fridge, then hanging just for a few hours today. (It was too warm to hang for very long.). I wanted to taste it before I cut up the rest, just in case it had a ram taint. I made an Italian sausage mix with lots of garlic and herbs and pork belly fat from our pig. It tasted fine, no taint at all, quite good actually, and was certainly tender enough for other kinds of meat cuts, so maybe I'll make some chunks for curry and stews as well as the sausage and ground lamb for chili I was planning. I guess that all the spice and pork fat might have hid the taint, but you'd think I'd be able to tell.

I still have the other three quarters, and not enough time really to do them. I suppose I could get it done this evening, but I have England v. Australia on the DVR, although delayed and I know who won (the ex-pat perils of reading the British papers online before watching your Setanta rugby).

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