Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Yellow, the Color of Autumn

This morning on the farm.
Leaves falling, coating not only the ground but everything in sight. Such a bright yellow.

The ewes and Fuzzy all out in the hayfield grazing on the leftovers. We put the ewes in the upper pasture and let the rams and ram lambs out to enjoy the field too. Everyone gets to enjoy the green grass until winter comes.  Summer is busy and noisy. Fall everything seems to slow down a bit. No more sounds of tractors cutting hay and baling. Winter brings peace, quiet and the sound of snow flakes lightly touching the ground. We are enjoying every minute of this season and looking forward to the next.
Much Love and Prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Clean Litter Box

No explanation needed. I'm a Lab!
Much Love and Prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm
The home of a clean litter box.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Snack Time

Every evening when I'm making dinner Emma and Lucy sit in waiting. Waiting patiently for me to drop anything edible. Sometimes it really doesn't have to be edible at all. They are still game.  Last evening was no different. They sit there and wait.
Many months back I started trying different things for snacks. They seem to like frozen green beans, corn, peas and most especially mixed veggies.
Soon, nothing left but Pergo.
Much Love and Prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm.
Home of the Hoover dogs.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Monday and Red Beans and Rice

For many years in the south Monday was always wash day. Sunday was a day of rest and this was needed to get ready for the laborious task of laundry. A pot of beans could be put on in the morning and let simmer all day while you were busy with laundry.   Luckily today we are blessed with washers and dryers.  One of the old ways that I personally am glad that  is gone. I wanted to share this delicious recipe for a hearty stew of sorts as the days turn cooler.

New Orleans Red Beans and Rice
1 pound of dried red beans (cover with water and soak overnight)
1/2 pound of thick bacon
1 package of andouille sausage
1 pound ham
1 large onion, chopped
1 large bell pepper, chopped
3 stalks of celery, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne pepper, to taste, if you like it hot add more
black pepper to taste
1 tsp dried basil
2 bay leaves
2 quarts chicken broth
1/2 Tbl canola oil
Hot white rice
Chop the bacon and cook in a large pot. I like to use hickory smoked thick bacon. The flavor is really worth it.
Chop celery, onion and bell pepper.  This pepper was so big that I only had to use half and I put the rest in a baggie in the freezer for later use.
In southern cooking this combination is also known as the Holy Trinity. It is the basis for so many recipes.
Add to the bacon and drippings. Do not drain out the grease. It adds flavor. Sweat vegies until tender.
Chop garlic and add to pot.
Stir and cook a bit longer.
I am amazed that I found Andouille sausage in Maine. If you can't find it, you can use Kelbasa. I just can't imagine this but the recipe says you can. This spicy sausage is usually made in Cajun country however, mine came from New Hampshire. It has a smoked, spicy flavor.
Slice the sausage in about 1/2 inch slices.
I just gave the ham a rough chunk.
Brown the sausage and ham in a pan with the canola oil.
Add black pepper to taste
dried basil
bay leaves
into the pot.
Drain the beans after soaking overnight. Save the liquid. It is chocked full of vitamins and will add flavor to the stew.
Combine leftover bean juice and enough chicken broth to equal 2 quarts.
Add the broth mixture to the pot and then throw in the ham and sausage.
Cook over low heat, uncovered until the beans become tender.  About 2-3 hours.
The liquid will thicken and the color will change to a nice warm brown. Serve over white rice. It is even better the next day when the flavors have time to meld. Leftovers can be frozen for a quick meal on a cold night.
Hope you try and enjoy this meal. We love it! Happy Wash Day.
Much Love and Prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Fall Squash Season

Summertime brings fresh veggies at the farmers market.  We tried an organic co-op last summer but that really fell short of our expectations.  The price was a bit steep and the return was way less than I expected for my money.  I had planned on going straight through to fall with this co-op.  However, I can only eat so much salad.  I expected more zucchini, summer squash, beans, beets, etc...   I got lettuce and more lettuce. 1 zucchini.  What can you do with only one small zucchini?  This summer we hit the farmers markets in the area.  We had an abundance of squash, lettuce, green onions, beets. Oh, how we love beets and greens.  Fall has arrived and now the farms in our areas are putting out butternut, acorn, turban and hubbard squash.  Oh the possibilities. Soups, baked, and pies. Yum....
Tonight it is baked acorn squash.  Ted likes his sweet, baked with butter and sugar. I like mine savory, baked with butter and a little salt. Simple but good.  The chickens enjoy the seeds.
How do you like your squash?  What recipes do you go back to winter after winter?  We are working on cleaning out the basement once the fences get finished.  Did I mention we are still working on fences? No? Pictures to follow.  Anyhow, I want to head back to Thunder Road Farm in Corinna, ME and pick up a winter supple of squash  to store "down cellar".  What we don't eat the goats, sheep and chickens will.  I think they will make splendid treats. Out to work on fences.
Much Love and Prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Night Peace

Peace and quiet of the country. No light pollution.
Much Love and Prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Happy Fall Ya'll

Fall, one of my favorite seasons. I guess it is so much fun when the weather starts changing and we get a nip in the air.  We can start the woodstove, cozy on the inside. Mmmmm... Yep. Fall.
Here in Maine it means Mums and pumpkins.  Oh, and cornstalks. You have to have cornstalks.
Lucy was admiring my loot that I picked up at a local farmstand. Those mums are full of blooms still tightly covered just waiting to open.
My little wagon sure does come in handy. I have even found a way to hook it to the mower and pull it around the yard to pick up limbs and such. Okay, crazy lady on mower pulling a wagon. All I need is a few cats to make this picture. Oh, I have cats. Remove that image from your mind please.
Last fall I had added some potting soil under the sign for just this instance. The weeds made themselves a home.
After a bit of weeding the mums have found a home. Out with the weeds!

Ted was busy trying out a paint sprayer.  Part of the fence is painted. Needless to say, we will be going back to the paint by brush and roller method. But the pumpkins look lonely.

Red mums around the flagpole. Very patriotic mums!
I know what is missing. Cornstalks.  Hmmm...these are really green but will soon turn nice and brown.
Now that looks better. I will get more cornstalks and add later. The pumpkins don't look near as lonely as before.

Much better.  The fall flag really adds some color.

Even the farm sign looks better with cornstalks.

Just getting into the season. 
Happy Fall!
Much Love and Prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm

Monday, October 1, 2012

Fences UP!

Well, the fences are up.  We still had to cut the top of the fence posts off to make it regular. The yard is enclosed on the pasture side.  It makes a very nice division from the pasture.
This is kind of far away but it gives a good idea how the front fence looks.

The farm road gate will be in the far left corner.

We kind of knew how we wanted the front gate to be.  We looked at stone gateposts. Whew, was that a shocker.  We decided on using 6x6 wooden gate posts for now. If there will be stone gateposts we will have to learn how to do it ourselves. Can't pay a stone mason. Ouch. There is an option that may be possible. Something we will look at in the spring.

The front fence done.  We had to stop shy of the creek.  Reason one, it is low and wet. Reason two, when they built the road I think they dumped every boulder over the side and down the embankment onto our property.  The auger went spastic. We will finish that side with wire fence and those sharpened cedar posts that can be manipulated a bit more.

The side yard complete with a deer afternoon snacking.

We had no idea how to tie in the fence with the gate.  We kept measuring and adjusting and measuring until it finally worked out. 
The front from across the street.
Now to cut all of the fence tops off at an angle to help snow slide off and not rot so quickly. Painting to be done.  Gates.  We have ordered a "gate kit" complete with free swinging hinges. One for the front and one for the farm road. The animals will be happy to have the pasture after we get the final cut in the summer.  The will be able to eat through till first snow.  This will cut our hay consumption drastically.  When we get done each group will have an area to eat in separately. Keeping the peace.  To be continued.......
Much Love and Prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm