It Has Begun…

Last week we ran a Freezer Camp for the cornish meat chickens.
The ones we did could have used a bit more time to bulk up, but we’re going ahead with getting them done by the end of this week.
And it’s the last time I’m raising cornish chickens.
I’m so done with these guys.
The last few years, the quality of chick seems to be declining.
I don’t know why, and I’m not accusing the hatchery of anything.
We just haven’t had them grow as well as they should and this year we’ve had far, far too many broken bones.
Not just legs either.
And then with last week’s thunder storm, we lost more than 15 of them because they piled up on each other in the coop (even though the coop was wide open and they were free to come and go as they please) and smothered each other.
So, out of 75 chicks, once I finish butchering them this week, we’ll have 35 birds.
That is ridiculous.

Meanwhile, my home hatched roosters?
Not a single loss.
28 in the bachelor pen and when the thunder was rumbling, they were screaming right back at it.
πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚
So next year we’re focusing on home hatched/raised birds.
No more cornish meats to die on a whim or because a fly farted too close to them.
Hardy dual purpose backyard crosses, bred for size, flavor and hardiness.
And maybe we can encourage people to come back to eating slow food through our breeding program.
The roosters are best cooked low and slow…they’re crockpot food, not fast frying.
But that long slow cook extracts all the nutritional goodness out of them, so it really is the best way.
For when we want bbq, I remove the breasts, brine or marinate them, and then roast the rest of the carcass.

So I hope we can encourage people to embrace slow food (which with the prevalence of instapots these days, doesn’t even need to be slow) and move away from the supermarket chicken.
Who knows…we’ll see.
We simply can’t bear the financial losses that go with cornish anymore.

But what goes with running a Freezer Camp is the inevitable roasting of backs/necks/carcasses, making bone broth and then the canning of the meat bits and broth.
That’s where I am today.
On the roasting part.
So the house, even though it’s hot af again, smells like delicious roasted chicken.
Needless to say, we’re having some sort of chicken dish for supper tonight.
πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

The garden is ramping up well.
Beans are producing.
I have the rows of royal burgundys to pick and can. Same with the yellows.
I have to get more mulch in around the pintos…they’re starting to blossom, and the weeds are fighting hard to take over.
So I’ll pull weeds, feed the geeses and mulch, mulch, mulch.
We had a small meal from the Painted Pony beans.
They were tasty, but I was disappointed with the strings. I hadn’t realized how tough the strings on them were.
So I’m on the fence about growing them again.
Love, love, love them for the name and provenance (named for the American Paint Horse…and we know how Wolfie feels about them APHA gals, right? πŸ˜‰ ) but if they’re tough and stringy, I’ll find a better heirloom bean for us (royal burgundys).

I’m eating radish seed pods like crazy.
Nom. Nom. Nom.
I did not know before this year how damn tasty they are!
I’ve marked out a few plants that I’m going to let seed pods dry on so that we have radish seeds for next year, but aside from those few, I’m eating, eating, eating.
The black radishes are huge.
Size of my fist and bigger.
So I plan to ferment some.
Fermented radishes are yummy.
Really, really, yummy.
And easy to do.
But we’ve never had huge ones like this that I could ferment…and we’ve always just eaten them from the garden with salt, or in potato salad. Now I have enough to ferment.
That’s on the list to do this week.
Might even sneak a beet into a jar with some radishes.
*drools* I love the idea of fermented radishes and beets together.
Hopefully it tastes as good in real life as it does in my head.
πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

And now off to work for me, because I have 19 chicken carcasses in my oven waiting for me…but to finish the post with a picture of my APHA gal…because no matter what, I will always love her and will never have a day where I don’t think of her. ❀

❀ Cookie ❀

10 thoughts on “It Has Begun…

  1. Sandee says:

    I so remember putting the food up for the winter and the new year. I so remember. Lots of work, but delicious food.

    Cookie was adorable. I know how you loved her.

    Have a fabulous day and week, Christine. β™₯

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Phil says:

    Daaaaaaang you guys are busy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • WolfSong says:

      Yup.
      This will be the way of it for the next 3 months or so…until deer season is done and the pig is processed as well.
      We rest πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ in winter here.

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  3. gail says:

    pulled my tomatoes and tossed them. we had rain all of july and they just crapped out. it killed the pea vines too. but i have 3 cucumbers on the vine and many flowers and the pot plants are doing well tho not budding yet. but we started them late. your homehatched birds are healthy and thriving. definitely the way to go. also, got some stamps today and on the sheet of heritage breeds is your narragansett turkey. also wyandotte chickens.

    Liked by 1 person

    • WolfSong says:

      Ugh, I wish the weather could have just gotten it together for everyone and given us all a decent growing season.
      I might get a decent crop of peppers, but my tomatoes are so far behind…I’m leaving them, just in case tho…

      Very cool on the Narragansett stamps!
      They’re such a fun turkey. πŸ™‚

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    • Jessie/Ember says:

      Our garden is behind on everything too – except eggplant and beets, those are doing amazing. Oh, and zucchini of course. I don’t know what to do with all of the zucchini, per the usual. I’m glad I’m not the only one with no buds, I’m a little concerned but hopefully it’ll all pull together.

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  4. Paul says:

    “No more cornish meats to die on a whim or because a fly farted too close to them.” That sounds like Sheep. Ha ha!

    Liked by 1 person

    • WolfSong says:

      Ooooh…don’t say that!!
      I still want sheep!
      πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚
      Though our vet, who is a sheep guy, tells me that if I can keep horses alive, I can keep sheep alive. lol!

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  5. Mya says:

    Cookie is super cute!!! You sure have a lot of work! I don’t raise chickens but my girlfriend has 50 of them and she said they are a lot of work!!πŸ™‚

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