Tag Archives: Chicken

Day is Done, Gone the Sun.. Part II

When we entered the barn early, early in the morning I felt like I was a character in  Charlotte’s Web.   They (the goats, chickens, guineas and turkey) were quiet and tucked in.  Their eyebrows  raised with curiosity.  “What are the people doing here this early?  Is something the matter?  Are they coming to take us away?  Who are they going to take?  Where would they take us?  It is still dark outside.”

When we grabbed our first chicken, then they knew.  “It is the chickens they are after.”  Then all heck broke loose.  All the animals were running about, back and forth, this way and that.   I just had to remind myself, this is farming.  This is what it is.

Loadin’ up the truck

Off to the Amish farm we go.  It took about two hours to get there.  Pops and I drove separately because we cant figure out how not to.  It would be too complicated. What if,  heaven forbid, one of us wanted to go somewhere different than the other while we wait for the birds to get their haircut and other stuff.   So, we followed each other there.

Amish farm bright and early

The farm was lovely.  I don’t know what it is about farms, nature, animals. But when you  put all that together I feel like I am going to burst with joy.   I was so taken with this farm.

They were unloading chickens from two other vehicles.  One guy brought 275 chickens and the other brought about 20.  All I could think about was what if they gave me their chickens back instead of mine.  Their chickens we dirty and skinny.  Ours were the “suburban” looking chickens.  Clean, plump, shiny and new.  Beautiful color.  “I don’t want their chickens,”  I said to the kind Amish man.  He said, “You’re not getting their chickens.”  I said “ok”.

We got our chickens back.  26 of them.  Weighing in at 4-5 lbs to 7 lbs.  Some of them are monsters.  We got them home and I am starting to feel a little queasy about eating these things.  The day was extremely emotional for me.  By the time I got home late in the afternoon I was physically ill.  It was like the day the goat died at my hand.  This farming thing is really emotional.  I know I will get use to it as time goes by but this was the first time I have ever eaten an animal that I have raised.

Pops kept making me take photos of the chicken.  I have decided I don’t like taking pictures of food.  Seems really odd to me.   I will take them, but it makes me feel the same as when someone makes me pose for a photo.  It is unnatural.    I am weird.  But aren’t we all?

We grilled the birds and ate them.  OKAY.   So what did they taste like?  The white meat was perfect.  The dark meat was a little chewy.  Not tough.  Just chewy a little bit.   We attribute that to free ranging.  Running around here gaining muscle on their little bones as opposed to force-fed birds in confinement.  The flavor is outstanding.  And we are happy about it.  It was and has been an adventure.  It would be really cool to find someone closer to process them and I think we probably could do it ourselves but that discussion is for another day.  We will enjoy for now.

God bless,

Karen

5 Comments

Filed under Farm, Food/Recipes

Omega What?

Omega 3.  What is it?  We are reading it on a  lot of labels, aren’t we?  Omega 6.  Same thing.  What the heck?  Why does it matter?  Sometimes I think the “whoe’er out there”  just makes this stuff up.     (I wont go there…I want to be positive)

But we DO need to talk about the Omega 6’s and 3’s.

Omega 6 AND 3 are fatty acids that we need for a healthy body.  Our body does not make them.  We  get them through our foods.  Once consumed, they are converted into the building blocks for hormones that control immune function, blood clotting, and cell growth as well as components of cell membranes.  In my book, important stuff.

THE IMPORTANT THING IS that it needs to be in balance in our bodies to work properly.   THE TYPICAL AMERICAN IS NOT BALANCED.   The ideal ratio is 2:1 (omega 6: omega 3). The typical American has a ratio of 20:1.  Not good.

What happens when we are out of balance with our 6’s and our 3’s?  Well….  This is what my research turns up:

The imbalance causes an inflammatory environment causing chronic conditions such as asthma, allergies, diabetes and arthritis.   As well as heart problems and depression.    That is not good.

****What may seem really bizarre is that many people who eat very healthily can be susceptible to these chronic diseases because they are out of balance.

What we have to remember is that Omega 6  is necessary and good ONLY if it is balanced with the omega 3.

So what foods have omega 6 and what foods have omega 3,  you ask?

Omega-6

Vegetable oils: grape seed, cottonseed, safflower, corn and sunflower oils.

Processed foods.  Most made with very cheap oils.

Grains

Meat

Dairy

As you can see many of these items are good for us.  And that is not the issue.  The issue is keeping all in balance.

Omega-3

Flax seed/oil

Cod liver oil and fish oil ( the label above is THE BEST you can buy.)

Walnuts

Beans (not all beans are rich in omega-3.  Some are more than others.

Fish

Olive, macadamia, avocado and coconut oils.

Grass fed meat and chickens.

Free range eggs

So while it is not necessary to refrain from the omega-6 rich foods, it is vital that you add more of the omega -3 rich foods with it.

How to balance:

Eat walnuts instead of almonds, every other time.  Don’t forget to soak and dry first both almonds and walnuts!  Almonds are very high in 6 while walnuts are high is 3.

Eat fish more often.

Take cod liver oil or fish oil. Fermented is the best kind and can be purchased online.  I buy a year supply at a time.

Switch oils. Remember oils come in many different forms.  Lots and lots of processed food uses oils.  Including anything that tries to look or act like butter.

DONT EAT PROCESSED FOODS!!!!!

Eat less grains and eat more beans.

Drizzle flaxseed oil on foods high in omega-6

Chronic diseases are ruling our culture and our health care.

Take great care of yourself!

God bless,

Karen

Leave a comment

Filed under Food/Recipes, Health/ Nutrition

The Legend Is Truer Than I Knew

Broth is  “sick”.  That is what my kids say when something is really cool.  But I just learned in the last year just how “sick” broth is.

Bone Broth.  I am SO glad I have acquired this knowledge now that we are producing meat.  I can just imagine myself  when it is time to butcher saying to the guy, ” Dont want the bones or anything but steak and hamburger.”   I am realizing some of this stuff is WAY more nutritious than the meat.

I haven’t gotten into beef broth as much as I have chicken broth yet since I don’t have an accumulation of beef bones at any  one time.  I am sure I could get any amount I want from the butcher.  I will check that out.   But the beef bones are coming from our pasture soon!

Broth heals us and it is true what Grandma says about sipping it when we are sick, but it is SO much more than that and I am working at incorporating it into our daily life.  It is one of those total SUPER foods that boosts our health to grand levels.

So what does it do for us, you ask?

Well, it does this:

It is chock – full of  minerals.  We are mineral deficient in a BIG way.  We spend a lot of time concentrating  on just the vitamins that are vital.  To be deficient in minerals is devastating.

It nourishes our immune system.  This feeds our whole system  and keeps illness at bay.  Healthy and Strong.

It enhances our digestion system.  Through all that I have learned,  the digestion system is where it is at.  If it is struggling and compromised, then we are free to welcome all forms of bacteria.

It feeds our body collagen where it is needed:  joints, ligaments, tendons, skin (supple skin reducing wrinkles) , membranes, mucus and bones.

Not a bad deal, eh?

When we eat chicken, I take all the bones when we are finished (yes, all the bones that are gnawed on by individuals) and throw them in a pot.  Fill it with filtered water.  Bring to a boil and simmer for 24 hours or more.  What is left is this wonderful broth that is very gelatinous.  I pour into a Ball jar and pop into the freezer.   I use it for lots  of things.  When a recipe calls for water or liquid, broth, etc.  I use the bone broth.  It just absolutely cannot be beat in nutrition.  It is wonderful when cooking rice, vegetables, soups, drink alone, quinoa or other grains.

There is so much wrong with the broth we purchase today.  Canned broth- salt and BPA’s.   Boxed broth- salt and wax from container.    Cubes- salt and what is that stuff anyway??

I CANNOT wait to get my hands on the cow bones. 

I am tempted to scream this from my roof top:

CONVENIENCE IS NOT CONVENIENT WHEN OUR QUALITY  AND QUALITY OF LIFE IS COMPROMISED.

BONE BROTH

Bones of an animal

Filtered water to cover bones

Veggies (optional)

Spices (optional)

Bring to boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 24-48 hours.   Less for fish.  More for beef.

YUMMMMMMO.

Have a super weekend!  If you have ideas of what else to do with broth, please share!

On a side note…I looked up the word  “chock” that I used above.  As it sits alone – chock- the def. doesn’t support my use of it.  But there is a word, “chock-full” that does.  And it looks like that: chock-full.  Not chock full, or chockful.  Weird.

Another word thing.  I use the word “smegma” a lot.  I use it to refer to slimy yucky stuff which I see a lot of around here.   I looked it up to see if it was actually a word or did I make it up.

It means:

Smegma (Greek smēgma, “soap”[1]) is a combination of exfoliated (shed) epithelial cells, transudated skin oils, and moisture. It occurs in both female and male mammalian genitalia.

Ooops.  My apologies for misusing a word over and over and with your permission, I would like to continue using  it in the same way I have been using it.

God bless,

Karen

4 Comments

Filed under Farm, Food/Recipes, Health/ Nutrition

6:38 am Wake Up Call – US GOVT.

While you may think that this farmer gets up at 5 a.m., I am here to tell you that is not the case.  Not until those goats that have been pregnant since September drop their kids in my lap.  Then I will need to get up at the crack of dawn.  Actually,  I have been “nesting” since September in anticipation of the delivery.   Trying to get rest before the sleepless nights.  Wait….I already don’t sleep at night.  I have noticed the goats seem to have been ordered bed rest.  They aren’t movin’ much this last week.  Maybe soon!

As I was contemplating getting out of bed at 6:38 the phone rang  and the caller id read: US GOVT.  (Isn’t funny how that is always in caps? )   So my first thought, of course,  being the mommy that I am, was that they were calling to tell me that my son, who is in the ARMY,  had done something wrong or something had happened to him.   That is just where your mind goes when an office of authority calls you.  No…..It was the  US POST OFFICE in my little itty bitty town telling me that my chicks were in and come get them. Thank goodness that my boy is safe! He is.  He is on a pass this weekend having a ball not too far away from here.

When you order chicks on-line they come in the mail when the chicks are 1 day old.  They have enough nutrition stored up in their little bodies (One of God’s miracles among millions of others) to keep them flyin’ for a couple of days. 

They are alive and WELL! And yes,  they were hungry and were able to distinguish between the water, food and bedding.  Quickly, I might add.

We have somehow ended up with 64 birds here.  “How did this happen?”, the rooster said to the hen.  We don’t know.  But this gaggle of 26 that showed up here this morning are meat chickens.  Did you know that the chicken you buy at the store might be as young as 9 weeks?  They very well could  be younger than that.  I never would’ve thought…  We will keep ours for 12 weeks and that is o.l.d.  We are going to provide them a feed that is lower in protein to slow the growing rate down.  What happens to these poor chickens when they are allowed to grow too fast,  which is the case in ALL commercial outfits,  is their legs break under the weight of their bodies and they cannot walk.  ugh.  Dont want that to happen.  We are just venturing into meat territory and I don’t want anything scary to happen.  It is scary enough just raising the  stuff!

Speaking of meat chickens,  ever get tired of the same ol’ same ol’ barbecue chicken?   This is a wonderful change that DOESN’T INCLUDE SUGAR OR CORN SYRUP which is in almost every bottle of BBQ sauce:

This sauce is probably enough for 1 whole chicken.

1 stick Melted butter

a couple of T. Worcestershire sauce

lemon juice of 1 lemon

2 or 3 garlic cloves minced

melt and mix all together on stove top and baste chicken on the grill.  YUMMY.

Have a SUPER holiday weekend!

God bless,

Karen

6 Comments

Filed under Farm, Food/Recipes, Health/ Nutrition