Makaria Farm Dinner

dill roasted cabbage

dill roasted cabbage

roasted fennel

roasted fennel

roasted fresh garlic

roasted fresh garlic

garlic mashed potato with peashoots

garlic mashed potato with peashoots

all thanks to our CSA through Makaria Farm (except the peashoots – they’re from our garden)

Duck Dinner


waiting for browning


almost ready for the slow cook

everyone raves about duck. whole duck. we usually portion our birds, but I thought, “eh, what the heck”.  the beer braised muscovy recipe on this site (scroll down or ctrl + F once you’re there to find it) intrigued me … we have a “smoky” beer that we brewed (a little heavy handed on the carmelization of the malt, heh, heh) which worked out deliciously.  I got a little carried away with the dried fruit, so it was a bit overpoweringly sweet.

verdict: nummy.

but I’d still rather portion our birds.  look at all the goodies we get out of duck day vs. whole ducks that each result in a meal or two for a family.

Shank Dinner


dinner, thanks to Limpy

after a hard day for D, and some butchering, here was dinner no. 2, thanks to Limpy, the 730 lb boar we shared in.

via McLagan’s Odd Bits, we enjoyed Ragu Masterplan (heart, trim & tongue), and tonight a rear leg/shank braised with mirepoix and finished in a cranberry sauce, with a cranberry jam condiment (sugar, vinegar, cranberries: cook).  oh yum.

we’re getting better: the more animals we butcher ourselves, the more we’re getting out of the animal (odd bits, braising bits, fat, bone broth, paté, sausages & other charcuterie …)

looking forward to more great dinners, with family, and with friends.

we get to enjoy thanksgiving every day, lucky us.


it’s physically difficult to portion an animal.  but that’s just the physical.

it’s mentally and spiritually difficult to kill anything.  especially anything big.  psyching up to do the kill is something that takes a lot out of us.  the rest is work, but not the same.  tiring, yes, but not draining.

we owe it to those animals that we kill to use them the best we can.  we’re getting better.

thank you, our animals.

from the omnivores.

Pig… month?

we’ve been blessed by an embarrassment of riches this summer: free ducks, free Berkshire boars, all for the taking, we just have to do the work.  well, yup, lots of work.  last Saturday & this Saturday are “boar days”.  last week’s boy was over 700 lbs.  wow.  and we’re happy to share: a number of friends have participated & received meat, or have shared dinners with us.  why not?  what on earth are we going to do with (possibly) 2000 lbs of pig?

Food for Thought

muscovy moment

muscovy moment

it’s duck day again on Tuesday. so hard. we really enjoy having our ducks around (who wouldn’t? look at them!).

it’s a full day for two of us to go from duck “on the hoof” into the freezer, parcelled & packaged. we just did 12 (boys & girls) last Tuesday.  what did we get for that work?

  • 12 packages of breast meat, skin on
  • 3-4 packages of leg & thigh meat, skin on (the size of the legs will affect how many per package); sometimes that gets turned into sausage
  • “discard” skin off the neck, back & tail (gland removed): rendered down into beautiful golden duck fat (a little over 2 lbs from the 12 ducks last week)
  • one meal of duck gizzard goulash (using hearts & trimmed crops)
  • about 2 lbs of simple duck paté, using the livers and about 6 oz of duck fat (plus 6 oz butter)
  • stock (using the bones, whole skin-on wings, and peeled feet) – usually about 16 – 20 quarts altogether

pretty good feed for one solid day’s work (plus, of course, the season’s worth of feeding & raising the ducks!).  besides that, we give the cooked guts & heads, and leftovers from the stock & fat rendering to the pigs, which they adore (“more, please?”).



tractor parts from the local fair this past weekend.  click an image to embiggen.