Chicken is our primary occupation right now.
Even though I haven’t written lately, don’t think we have been on vacation. We don’t even wish we had, because we’ve been having fun. Working, but at this point in the season, it’s still fun.
Chicken is our primary occupation right now. Boneless skinless chicken breast and tenderloins remains the retail favorite. That comprises about 25% of a chicken’s total weight. That leaves us with 75% of the bird. We do sell some legs and thighs, whether as legs and thighs, drums, thighs–bone-in or boneless, ground, or sausage (a little creativity goes a long way). However, we have lots of wings, bones for broth, and dark meat cuts in the freezer. Last week we got inspired and made confit from the legs & thighs we had left over. Wow. My favorite recipe comes from Brian Polcyn’s
book Charcuterie. Confit is a method of cooking and preservation. With meat, you salt and season the meat–essentially cured–then poach it in fat. Way back when, the meat could then be stored in the cooled fat as long as the fat stayed solid and kept air away from the meat. We don’t need that now, but the flavor of confit is exquisite. It’s a favorite treat around here, and a great way to use the extra legs & thighs.
The other big excitement was the addition of “Penny” to our milking cow operation. We expected her to calve in July, but about 10 days ago she hopped the fence and found a cozy place in the tag alders to have her calf. She was bred by a Longhorn bull. The calf, a nice little heifer, is spotted like a Longhorn. She is a cute little thing–but then, what baby isn’t? Penny’s been a good mother. Sam goes out to make sure we know where the calf is and to handle her everyday, but Penny comes up to milk and then hangs out with her calf all the rest of the day. We’ll dry up Rosie soon as she’s due to calve the end of July and it’s good to give the cow a month to fully dry up and convert her supply for the new calf. We’re going to be in the milk soon!