Wednesday, 29 January 2014

It's time

Sometimes it just becomes time!  For us it's definitely time to find ways to use our zucchini!!  Are you inundated with zucchini too?  At the end of this post I'll tell you about how I used the zucchini this morning.

Do you remember we harvested honey recently.  After we spun out the honey in the frames, we were left with lots of honey stuck in the cappings.  We hung this in muslin to allow the honey to drain.  The huge bag of muslin with the remaining wax has been floating around my kitchen for a good couple of weeks.  Today I got sick of it so it became time to put it all in a saucepan to deal with the beeswax.
A long time ago we had goats here.  Our aim was to milk them but it just wasn't the right time.  We were learning about goats, busy with very young children and struggling with fencing issues.  I gave them to a friend with dairy goats. 

Last week I saw my friend and she told me she would like to give our goats back.  She has ended up overstocked.  So now it has become time.  Our children are older.  I hope think we are ready!  We spent the weekend madly addressing the paddocks.  This paddock won't be ready for them but we want to be organised for the long term.  This paddock has been on my mind for a long time now because it was sooooo badly degraded.  We will fix this paddock and re-fence a couple of others (that aren't as poor as this one).  I figure if we have at least five paddocks all together, we can rotate the animals through.  This will give the paddocks time to regenerate and stop worms building up in the soil.
It's very exciting!  Daisy is in milk so very soon I will be milking.  I'm hoping Kim from Little Black Cow will be my goat mentor.  She could give me lots of advice.  Initially we will be bring in feed. We will try and keep their diets similar to what they are used to at first but apparently Daisy could do with a bit of weight on.  What do I feed a lactating goat to fatten her up?  Off to the library soon to see if I can borrow a good book or two.  I've been devouring all the goat sections in my own books.

And last but not least, my bantam went clucky a few days ago so it was time to get a hold of some fertile eggs.  I prepared her shed with fresh bedding and picked her up to pop the eggs under her.
Trouble is, last weekend we treated all of our chooks for scaly leg by dipping their legs in oil.  When I picked up the hen, her whole underside was thick with oil.  I couldn't let her sit on eggs like that so I whipped her inside to perform my first-ever chook bath.  We dried her off with the hair dryer very gently.  She is still quite oily so I don't know if we will end up with chickens.  What a silly shemozzle.
Now.  That zucchini.  This morning I grated about 300g of zucchini and two small potatoes.  I squeezed them out firmly in a clean teatowel and put them in a bowl.  I added half a chopped Spanish onion, one egg, two tablespoons of flour, salt and quite a bit of pepper (I like pepper).
I heated some very yummy olive oil in a heavy frying pan.  I put blobs of the mixture in the pan, flattened them and cooked them gently for quite a while until they were very crispy.
Belle, who is ten, tells me they taste like hash browns.  I was delighted and a little bit smug about the fact that Pumpkin (seven years) had to ask what a hash brown was!!

If you have any good zucchini recipes please link through to them in the comments.  I think we could all use more ways to eat them at this glut time of year!


Joy Belle said...

Well there's always the good old Zucchini Slice.

Beat 5 eggs well, add 1 cup SR flour and mix well. Add grated zucchini, 1 finely chopped onion, 200g finely chopped bacon, 1 cup grated cheese and 1/4 cup vege oil. mix well. pour into a 20x30cm lamington pan and bake at 170 for approx. 30 mins.

this is good hot or cold.

BTW - I have put together my very first sourdough starter today - using your recipe. Hopefully it will work out and I can get to make my first loaf on the weekend.

Evi said...

Funny that I should read your post just now….we are having zucchini slice tonight!!! And I agree with Joy Belle - it's delicious hot or cold!!
I do have a recipe somewhere on my blog and will share it here later…gotta go cook that slice!!!

Kim said...

Yes I shall be your goat mentor , Linda. Even though Honey has moved on ...we still have two goats and I am currently getting 2 Litres per day in milk.
Our email address is in the tariffs section of the blog - just email and I will answer any questions.
Oh and we did the same...we had goats ...then realised we weren't ready...then we were and got them again.

Ali M said...

I know my mum made zucchini relish/pickles tasted ok too... I wonder if you will make goats milk soap..because I loooove g/milk soap. I would love to have goats...maybe one day.

Linda said...

I had a bit of a run-through with Zucchinis recently - and there is a link on there to more.


Linda Woodrow said...

As a gardener of many years, I have dozens of zucchini recipes! My favourites would be Cheesy Zucchini Balls, Zucchini Macaroni Cheese with Crumbles and Lebanese marinated Zucchini et al.

Farmer Liz said...

Yay goats!

Chris said...

Having livestock on the land will help bring it back, so long as its not overstocked - which you're addressing.

The best tip I can think of to help improve the condition of your goats, is to ferment their grain. If you intend to give them dry grain, ferment them in a bucket of water for 2 to 3 days (stirring occasionally) and then serve into a container with a slotted spoon.

Fermenting the grain will help break down the outer layer, so the goats don't have to use up energy breaking it down in their stomachs. It also makes the vitamins and minerals more easily accessible, before the feed makes it back into the world as manure.

You will also go through less feed if its fermented and water, because the feed is already hydrated. I recently started fermenting my scratch mix for the chickens, and I think the egg quality has improved and the hens aren't as ratty as they were looking. I think they were laying eggs at the expense of their health, so I had to address how I was managing them.

It's not that hard to ferment grain. I have 2-3 small buckets going at a time, so I always have fermented grain available. You will be surprised how much less they will eat. One bag of scratch mix, lasts twice as long.

If you do a google search for fermented grains for animals, you'll see goats mentioned. I hope you get to enjoy the milk very soon. Let us know if you like it?

Linda said...

Joy belle, yes, zucchini slice!! The best of them all! Love it in December, hate it by march!!

I love hearing back about recipes so thank you. I don't think I posted starter instructions though. Only directions on making the bread. I'd love to know how it goes. :-)

Evi, yumm! Enjoy! It would be great if you could out a link up. Thanks. Think of you often as the new year begins.

Kim. Thank you! You will be hearing from me! So much to learn.

Ali, I make soap but I always use a recipe that I got from my soap making teacher. I would love a recipe for a goats milk soap if you hear of one. I agree, goat's milk soap is wonderful!

Linda, I had a look at your zucchini uses. Very clever to use the marinated zucchini in so many ways!

Linda W, thank you. My kids will love the zucchini macaroni cheese!

Liz, yes, big yay!

Chris, thanks heaps. These goats have been eating sprouted barley and I used to sprout wheat for the chooks. I hadn't heard of fermenting for animals. I'll look into it!

Margaret said...

I have yet to make Zuchini slice, but now that my brother has chooks, I will give it a try, my fave is Zuchini fritters with homemade Tatziki for dipping....YUUUUM

han_ysic said...

And for something sweet try zucchini bread. Google mums zucchini bread (wouldn't let me cut and paste for some reason? , similar in Flavours to carrot cake but great just with a bit of butter. Ps can also grate zucchini and put 1 cup portions in zip locks to freeze raw and use in baking, you can't tell the difference.

Linda said...

Hi Margaret, I don't think I've met a person that hasn't made zucchini slice! So easy, it's like cheating!

Han ysic, sounds good! And I've been doing the grating and frrezing of some of it. Chooks get some of it too.

Anonymous said...
And love your hashies. :D They taste awesome doused in tomato sauce. ;)