The last bits of the pork processing have been completed with our bacon now wrapped and in the freezer.
I really am running very behind with my blog journal as this all happened last Saturday and Sunday.
The purchase of the second hand meat slicer has been a great bonus. We sliced the bacon as soon as it had cooled after being in the smoker for twenty four hours. Packed into meal size portions and into the freezer.
The bacon needs to be smoked slowly, the temperature of the smoking chamber should be no hotter than 40C. Brian got the oak shavings burning early so the bacon and bones went in at 7am Saturday morning. He checked and replenished the shavings every 2 hours all through the day and all night until it was ready at 7am Sunday morning.
See the details of making nitrate free brine and smoking bacon in a blog I wrote last year. I have amended the amount of salt this year by cutting back by a cup, and we think it tastes perfect for our taste. The recipe you will see there is the new amended salt measurement.
Well, Summer has returned with a vengeance and we expect a week or more of temps above 35C. One consolation is that the nights are cool. I'm trying to stay positive, as like many, we're looking forward to autumn and winter for so many reasons. I figure that if the weather is all that we can complain about, then we are not too badly off are we?
Regardless of the weather, life has to go on and farming jobs need to be done.
Brian processed eleven roosters for the table this morning. There are still more there to be done, but I was concerned there was not enough space in the freezers. They are four months old and are all around 3kg dressed. Big birds!
To conserve some space and pack them in tighter, I jointed six of them into packs of; chicken breasts, leg and thigh pieces, wings, and the frames for soup and stock.
We ate a roasted chicken tonight. Cooked outside in the old Weber barbecue in the "Le Chasseur" heavy enameled cast iron pot with a few spuds thrown in and a salad on the side. Simple and delicious with left overs for lunch tomorrow.
There are four hogget (lamb that has lost its first lamb's teeth, approx 1yr old, also called "two tooth") remaining from last year's lambing which are being butchered tomorrow morning. Early, because the forecast is for 39C..!!! They will hang in our refrigerated cool room for a week before we process them into roasts and chops next weekend, and will then be traded and shared among friends and family. I think I have space in our freezers for half of one, but of course I'll be doing my best to squeeze as much as I can in there.
Our meat variety in the freezers at this point in time are, lots of pork and bacon to see us through for the coming 12 months, a small bit of beef from the last beef we killed approximately six months ago, approximately ten chickens, some pigeons that Brian processed two weeks ago, approximately half of a mutton and a small bit of hogget. A friend brought us a Snapper and some Whiting fillets a couple of weeks ago that I traded for some dairy products, which is a welcome seafood treat for a couple of meals.
The vegetable gardens are still supplying us with abundant food, so I'm not buying anything much at all lately except tea, coffee, flour, and some organic wheat grains for milling in the stone grinder to make our sourdough bread.
So that brings me to getting back to the kitchen to feed the starter so I can bake a loaf tomorrow morning.
Wishing you light and peace, with a measure of happiness and contentment in there too.
Until next time,