Making the Most of a Long Weekend

Having a long weekend with few distractions has allowed us to take advantage of some time at home. We’ve been so busy lately that it’s nice to just be home and get stuff done. It was extra nice to spend most of Thursday relaxing and not doing much.

Friday, Tom got up at 2:30am to traipse off with his buddies to go pig hunting. They didn’t get anything but he had fun and I got some alone time to get some things done that I’ve been putting off because of distractions. I also processed the 20+lbs of apples that we had into 26 pints of applesauce. With the peels and cores I decided to give apple pectin a try. It seems to have worked out well and I look forward to making new jellies and jams that I couldn’t do previously because I refuse to buy commercial pectin (yes, I’m stubborn that way).

I have to say the applesauce came out perfect. It’s tart and sweet with a ton of flavor – just how I like it. I didn’t really write down a recipe. I just threw the peeled, cored and sliced apples into a large pot, added enough water to keep them from burning and cooked them down. I then ran them threw the food mill, put them back in the pot, added sugar to taste and a 1/4 cup of lemon juice just to up the acidity a bit. Put them in sterile jars and water bath canned them for 20 minutes.

Today after we got home from the farmers’ market we pulled everything out of the garden that was at it’s end. Asparagus, corn stalks, squash, cucumbers, everything. The weeds are pretty bad and I have no idea how we’ll ever conquer them but the first step will be laying down black plastic next week.

Now that the garden is cleaned up it’s time for some fermentation! Cottage cheese and sauerkraut are next on the list.

For tomorrow we’ll be laying down new irrigation lines, spreading compost and manure, make some cheddar cheese, and take some blood samples from our goats to send in for testing. Oh yeah, did I mention we’re getting a third doe? More on that later…

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