"Commentary from the Countryside"
Thoughts on current events,
history, homesteading, preparedness, real food, and anything else I find interesting, from a cranky, middle-aged woman's common-sense perspective.

Monday, December 5, 2011


Saturday was filled with outside chores - which isn't a bad thing, except much of it was re-doing tasks I had already checked off my list, including re-tarping our little backyard pool and re-taping the plastic film I used to winterize the first floor windows.  I'm not surprised that the high winds tore the tarp off the pool, but I am very disappointed that the window film kits aren't holding on.  I've used the same brand for five years and this is the first year I've had this issue.  Probably yet another product that is now made in China. We did finally get the mower deck off the lawn tractor, the tire chains on, and the rack on the front porch filled with firewood.

Not-so-attractive pork sausage
Today was another busy day, makes me wonder how I had time to work when I had a job!  Had to take Daughter in for a dental appointment, pick up all the mail at the post office, and do some computer work.  Then, being a stubborn sort, (which I come by naturally) I started yet another pressure canning project.  My attempts so far have been less than successful, including the pork sausage.  Turns out I was supposed to cover the sausage with boiling water or broth before I closed the jars and put them in the canner.  My homesteading web friends tell me it's safe to eat, but just won't be as appetizing or last as long due to not being covered by a broth.

This time I tackled the twelve pound turkey I got at the after-Thanksgiving sale.  I decided to use the raw pack method, so I basically hacked the turkey up into bite-sized chunks, removing the skin and as much fat as possible.  The meat went into pint jars and into the canner.  The guidelines said not to add liquid, so I didn't!  It will be interesting to see how it turns out.  The bones and leftover bits went in to the big kettle to simmer and cook down.  You can be sure I'm watching that process very carefully! 

All of our snow melted during the weekend rains and I'm hoping to finish some more outdoor chores before we get more.  The last fenceposts and plastic mulch need to be removed from the garden, the downspout drain connection has to be replaced, and  I need to rebuild the front porch steps before I have any Christmas visitors.  I doubt even full-strength eggnog would make up for someone falling through the rotted steps.

Time to see if the canner is cool enough to open.  Here's hoping I actually have useable, nicely done canned turkey!

Take care, my friends.


  1. Hey Cat, the sausage look great. They look like mine did when i canned them. Just wait till ya taste em, so good warmed up, with the liquid thas in the jar and make gravy with the liquid. OR you can make regular milk gravy and toss the sausage in there to heat and serve em over biscuits. Yummy. I didnt add liquid to mine either when i canned em. I just made patties, browned em a lil and stacked em in a jar, then added a lil bit of water to the dripings in the skillet and put about 2 tablespoons of that sauce in each jar and canned em up. I am thinkin I might take some of mine out of the freezer that we just made and can em up for pizza and stuff too. OH, not sure if ya took the far off ya beef stock or not, but beef stock does naturally have a odd smell. Beef is the one thing i alas remove the fat from. Keep canning muh fren, you are doing great, jus be careful who ya listen too. lub yas

  2. Thanks so much for your encouragement, Stella. I'm so glad to have feedback from experienced folksies like yerself. Don't think I'll ever try to make headcheese, though!