Around the Ranch-October 10, 2017

Here’s what we’ve been up to:

  • We’ve harvested the last of our jalapenos and green peppers. Most of the jalapenos were canned, and we ate most of the peppers. A lot of our peppers were picked prematurely because it turns out picking peppers is one of our 18 month old son’s favorite activities. He likes to load them into the trunk of his toy car!

  • Ryan has been busy with his new rototiller, working up the empty beds in the garden and replanting spinach and lettuce. We have carrots that are ready and more will go in and kept under the low tunnels this winter along with the spinach and lettuce.
  • The turnip crop came in nicely, and I finally found a recipe for glazed turnips that I really like. I’ve tried just roasting them before and haven’t loved them, but this recipe was really good! The worst part is peeling them, but after that, they were pretty easy.
  • I used one of our chickens to make Gordon Ramsey’s Chicken Parmesan, and it was SO GOOD! It’s surprisingly easy. Some of my timing was off, so our spaghetti was a little cold by the time the chicken was done, but I honestly want to make it every night for a week. We’d eat it everyday!
  • The last batch of chickens will be processed on Saturday. After having our  first two batches way under the weight that we were going for, we adjusted the amount of time that we raise them and move them once a day instead of twice, and the rest of the batches have averaged around 5 lbs.  Our processing time is getting better as well, and we’ve cut 3 hours off throughout the summer. After this batch, we’ll have done 300 chickens! We did 20 last year, so if someone would have told me that I’d be processing and selling 300 chickens this year, I would have laughed.
  • We’re working on ideas for how to build a small greenhouse off the side of the chicken coop at the house. We move the layers back here for the winter, and once the snow falls, they flatly refuse to go outside. We’re thinking that if we have a warm area attached to the coop that they’ll at least be able to get some sunshine throughout the winter. And if we can get the heat to pump back into the coop, it would eliminate the need for heat lamps and a heated waterer.

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