Britesea - Living the good life in rural Oregon

CrealCritter

Sustainability Master
Joined
Jul 17, 2017
Messages
5,791
Reaction score
6,504
Points
307
Location
Zone 6B or 7 can't decide
I have used pasta that had weevils in it once - I had nothing else available to eat in the house and I didn't get paid for 3 days. I poured the pasta shells into a colander and picked the good pasta noodles out and put them in a plastic container. I rinsed the noodles before putting into boiling water to cook. Noodles and butter for breakfast for 3 days. College kids, what ya gonna do.
Nothing wrong with noodles, butter and salt. I still get a craving every once in a while to this day :)
 

Mini Horses

Super Self-Sufficient
Joined
Sep 2, 2015
Messages
3,998
Reaction score
4,405
Points
282
Location
coastal VA
In some countries they eat various bugs -- it is a good source of protein and often all they have or can get. Also rats. We shun the idea and, of course, prefer without. BUT -- it is in every hard survival manual you will ever read. I toasted a few grasshoppers in the fields I burned this morning -- didn't eat them. :rolleyes:
 

flowerbug

Almost Self-Reliant
Joined
Oct 24, 2019
Messages
1,575
Reaction score
1,576
Points
187
Location
mid-Michigan, USoA
toasted grasshoppers are ok. i've had them. :) if i'm hungry enough here ever again i'd be sure to eat them, as they are around here and this time of the year they're big.

the bluebirds like to come around here and wrestle them in the gravel. sometimes they're half the size of the birds. :)

as for eating bugs in oatmeal or other, yep, i'm sure i've had a few, but rarely on purpose. as they say what's worse than finding a worm in an apple? finding half a worm! :) i've found the dry skins of meal worms in oat meal, but never seen the live version. at least i didn't feel it wriggling when chewing or going down the gullet...
 

flowerbug

Almost Self-Reliant
Joined
Oct 24, 2019
Messages
1,575
Reaction score
1,576
Points
187
Location
mid-Michigan, USoA
...
Ground Cherries:
Ground Cherries, aka Husk Cherries, aka Cape Gooseberries. They are a relative of tomatillo, and are little yellow marble sized fruits in a papery husk that looks like a chinese lantern. Taste is like a cross of a really sweet tomato, and pineapple. They surprised us with how tasty they are, and the upside down cake turned out really good.
it sounds good to me! :) thanks, i kinda figured they were something like that as i recalled someone calling tomatillos by that name. i've not had them though but they sound like good eating.
 

Britesea

Sustainability Master
Joined
Jul 22, 2011
Messages
5,152
Reaction score
4,139
Points
363
Location
Klamath County, OR
Well here's the monthly update 🤣🤣
Finally getting the summer/winter clothes changed. Even though I've lost some weight, everything from last winter was still wearable, although baggy. Only one pair of thermal bottoms had to be deep-sixed; they were so large that they would slide off if I put them on, and the elastic was all worn out. DH was in the same boat, although he actually found a couple of thermals that had been too small for him last year and they fit perfectly now- so he basically got some new stuff for this winter.

A lot of the green tomatoes we grabbed before the vines died are turning red now. I have a load in the FD (Freeze Dryer) chunked up for soups and stews later. I want to try canning some of the green tomatoes as well- either pickled or in salsa or something like that. Maybe I could try a green tomato pie, with low carb sweetener? I dunno. I thought I'd have a lot more greenies, but every morning I look in the box and more of them are blushing, lol. I took some last night and chopped them into some Chile Verde I canned a couple of years ago- simmered for 15 minutes to soften the tomatoes and it turned out really good! They added some bulk to the stew.

I have some block cheese that I got free that I've got drying before I wax them all for long term storage. This is a new experiment for me, but I'm using the video that Alaska Prepper posted on Youtube as a guide. I'm not getting any milk now, because the woman I was buying it from has some health problems and had to stop milking. Luckily, her calves were still on their moms, so she was able to avoid any mastitis problems. But it means no milk for me, so no butter or mozzarella *sigh*.

We cancelled our YMCA memberships yesterday... they had a new company policy that everyone has to wear a mask, even while exercising. We decided that was the last straw, so we cancelled. Hopefully we'll be able to keep up with our Tai Chi at home, even if it means moving the coffee table every time. Plus I have my stationary bike. I'm gonna miss the pool, though.

The chickens are finally starting to lay again. Everyone started their molts at the same time, and it was so sudden it was like flipping a switch. I've seen a couple of girls that had lost everything except some wing feathers- then a few days later they looked like two-legged hedgehogs with all the pin feathers sticking out. I was worried about them getting too cold as we've been having lows in the mid 20's F; but they did alright. I'm trying to decide how long to wait before we start culling the oldest hens to avoid having to pluck a bunch of pin feathers; they look feathered out, but I'm sure there's still a lot of them underneath. I know I could just skin them, but I'd like to render the schmaltz and if I skin them I will lose most of the fat. They aren't laying at all right now- everything is coming from this year's crop. We can't really afford to feed them all winter on the off chance that we'll get a few eggs come spring, plus if that neighbor of ours decides to complain to the authorities, we would have to get rid of all but 12 animals. Right now I'm planning on keeping 18, and hoping she doesn't notice. We also need to butcher the two turkeys- one for donating to a raffle, and one for us. I need to look up how long to let the carcasses sit in the cooler to allow rigor mortis to relax; last year we didn't do that and the meat was a bit tougher than I expected.

We have our wood for the winter- 2 full pallets of wood pellets, plus about a cord of split and stacked. We had a cottonwood that we had to cut down as the branches were pulling down the electric line plus it was casting shade on the solar array for the well. One of our neighbors came over with his chainsaw to cut it into 14" rounds, and he's promised to bring his splitter over to help us split it as well. He didn't want any wood, but we insisted it should be split between us. He said it's a good hard wood that should give us plenty of heat. The tree guys chipped all the small stuff for us, and also dumped the chips they had in their truck from a couple of previous appointments, so we have much woodchip wealth!

The garden is pretty much done. I need to clean up the beds and cover with chicken litter and woodchips for the winter. Is it too late to plant my garlic and shallots? I hope not. The kale is still looking very robust, but the chard and collards are wilting, so we are pulling them up and giving them to the hens. I have baby beets, but I planted so late that we don't have many mature ones- so they won't last us more than a month or so.
We tried out the Shoyu Fruit Radishes a couple of nights ago. They didn't taste sweet at all-- more like a Daikon. So I chunked some up with some radishes and onions and some freeze dried turkey meat from last year and it made a lovely stew- the radishes were a good substitute for potatoes. So I want to cover the bed (and the carrots too) with some straw so I can pull them through the winter. Anyone have suggestions for how much straw I need to cover them with to keep the soil from freezing hard?

Well, the timer went off, so it's back to the kitchen to start dipping the cheese...
 

flowerbug

Almost Self-Reliant
Joined
Oct 24, 2019
Messages
1,575
Reaction score
1,576
Points
187
Location
mid-Michigan, USoA
@Britesea i don't know anything about shallots but garlic should be ok planted even if the ground freezes the next day. at least the garlic i grow here is a hardneck and is pretty tolerant of the cold. i don't even need to mulch it at all. what type of garlic do you grow there? :)

as for insulation depths and such, that's going to depend upon your coldest temperatures you might get there and how large an area (thermal mass).
 

Mini Horses

Super Self-Sufficient
Joined
Sep 2, 2015
Messages
3,998
Reaction score
4,405
Points
282
Location
coastal VA
Many root crops handle winter in the ground well. A clamp is one of the old ways of storage for winter...esp if no cellar. Here I get very little ground freeze and only surface then. Just not that cold, that long. I've dug turnips in Jan with ease and good veg quality, no cover.

Throw a heavy layer on them. The root in tact will sustain them. Probably beds are in sun so that will help to keep the straw bed thawed and warmer. Snow? It's just more insulation if you get that. Go for it. Report back. ;)
 

Britesea

Sustainability Master
Joined
Jul 22, 2011
Messages
5,152
Reaction score
4,139
Points
363
Location
Klamath County, OR
I know we have a ground frost depth of 18 inches here, but no idea what I might need to keep the raised beds soft enough to dig. This is the first year I've really tried to overwinter root crops.
 
Top