Sunday Homestead Update

We are having BEAUTIFUL fall weather here in the mountains.  It has been sunny and 60s-70sF during the day and 30-40s at night.  We are really enjoying working and playing outside.  I love to sit out in the sun knitting while the kids run and play.

Knitting

Speaking of knitting, I haven’t shown any of my knitting projects lately.  Why?  Because I am working on Christmas knitting and everything I am doing right now is for people in my family who view this blog.  So here is all I can show you:

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5 project bags with 5 knitting projects in them.  There wont be much knitting to be shown until after Christmas, except maybe what I will be making for Mr. Smiles – he’s not big on reading the blog yet.  🙂

Butchering

This week we had a litter of 7 rabbits ready to butcher.  Most of our rabbits are sold for pet food, a whole rabbit (bones and guts included – fur off) is the most well balanced food for dogs on the raw food diet.  But this litter we decided to keep for ourselves because we wanted to can the meat.  We have never canned rabbit meat, but have wanted to try for over 8 years now.  It is high time we get around to it!  So we butchered them and cut them into quarters.  The legs and the backstrap were used for canning, and the rib cages were frozen for the dogs.

We soaked the meat in a salt brine (1T salt per 1 Qt water) for an hour.  It was cold water with some ice cubes to cool the meat.

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Then we packed the raw meat into quart jars and processed them in the pressure canner.

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From seven 12-week-old rabbits we got 7 Qts canned meat with one leg and one tenderloin left over, plus 7 rib cages frozen for dog food.

We haven’t tried the meat yet, but we are excited to try it out sometime this week and see how it tastes.  Everyone I have talked to says it tastes much better canned than frozen.  If we really like it we will probably try canning the chickens we will be butchering next month.

Hunting Season

Elk hunting season has opened in our area and Mtn Man and Young Man are anxiously awaiting their chance to put elk meat in the freezer for the family.  They each have a cow elk tag and a buck mule deer tag this year.  It would be wonderful if they filled them all – it would be enough meat for our family for the whole year.  Deer season isn’t open yet, it starts in October, so for now the hunt is on for elk.

After they butchered the rabbits they sharpened their knives so they will be ready to butcher any elk they get.

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Garden

The garden is mostly bare.  There are a few plants left that need to be cleaned out of there, and the pest control tent with beets and turnips in it is still alive and growing.  It will be interesting to see if we can harvest anything from them before it gets cold enough they die.  The tent is helping act as somewhat of a frost shield.

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The green tomatoes we picked before frost are beginning to ripen.  I have set aside ones I want to save for seed, we have eaten fried green tomatoes as well, and the rest will be used to make and can s

paghetti sauce as they ripen.img_2537

Grapes

We were gifted 35lbs of grapes this week from a family member who had a vine produce like crazy this year.  So we will be busy busy making jelly this week.

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Plenty of autumn activities going on around here!

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