Friday, March 29, 2013

Just in time for Easter dinner, I'm posting a recipe for leg of lamb.  It's super easy and turns out great.  

Garlic and Bacon-Stuffed Leg of Lamb with Rosemary

1 Short cut leg of lamb (about 4 lb)
6 garlic cloves, slivered
2 slices bacon, chopped
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cracked black pepper

Using sharp knife, remove thin membrane from lamb. Cut tiny slits all over lamb; insert garlic slivers and bacon. Brush oil over lamb. Sprinkle with rosemary, salt and pepper.

Roast on rack in roasting pan in 325 oven for 1 hour and 40 minutes to 2 hours or until meat thermometer registers 145 F for medium rare or 160 F for medium. Remove to cutting board; tent with foil and let stand 15 minutes.

Skin fat from pan drippings. Add ½ cup water to pan, bring to boil, scraping up brown bits. Strain and keep warm.

Place lamb with meatier portion facing up. Grip shank end firmly with towel. Cutting down to bone, cut ¼ inch thick slices. With knife parallel to bone, cut slices from bone. Turn lamb so remaining meaty portion faces up. Carve as for first side. Arrange on platter, pour pan juices over top.

The traditional Easter Sunday lamb dinner goes back earlier than Easter to the first Passover of the Jewish people.  The sacrificial lamb was roasted and eaten, together with unleavened bread and bitter herbs in hopes that the angel of God would pass over their homes and bring no harm. As Hebrews converted to Christianity, they naturally brought along their traditions with them. The Christians often refer to Jesus as The Lamb of God. Thus, the traditions merged.

Happy Easter everyone!

Monday, March 25, 2013

We're butchering steers and pigs tomorrow.  Available now for order:

Beef - whole or half - hanging weight $3.40/lb
         - family pack $100.00  includes 4 T-Bone or rib steaks
                                                           1 3-4 lb roast
                                                           3 lb round steak
                                                           12 lb lean ground beef

Pork - whole or half - hanging weight $3.25/lb
         - family pack $50.00  includes 5 lb pork chops
                                                        2 lb shoulder roast or chops
                                                        3-4 lb leg roast or ham
                                                        1 lb bacon
                                                        1 lb ground pork

Let me know if you're interested.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

These two lambs were born in January and are quite a bit older than the rest of the lambs.  Sheep will settle down after they have eaten and chew their cud.  If you go into the pen a few hours after feeding, everyone will be laying there very content, chewing and regurgitating their food.  These two lambs are always together, they even enjoy each others company while cud chewing.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Thankfully, the spring storm that dumped snow over us is over.  Even the wind has stopped, so now it's time to venture out and survey the damage.  The sheep and cattle didn't seem to mind it yesterday in the wind.  They just dug under the snow and kept right on eating.  Getting to the pigs in the barn may be another story though.  As you can see in the picture, the drift in front of the barn is huge!  I'm off to plug in the tractor, I don't think the semis will get up the driveway without a pull when they get home this afternoon.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

With our beef sales so strong we have had to purchase some calves for finishing. Our small herd cannot keep up with the supply and  I was able to source some calves from another farmer who farms the same way we do and has the same ideals.  His calves are chemical and hormone free, which makes them perfect for us. They are Galloway cattle which are what I have been looking for.  They have lots of hair to keep them warm in the winter which requires less grain in their ration.  Galloways finish with a smaller carcass which means that the cuts of meat are more what our customers are looking for.

The snow has been so deep that we weren't able to unload them at the loading chute.  All my pens are drifted 4 feet straight through and we can't even use any gates.  This time we had to unload at the barn which meant Lyle had to back up the semi through the yard and around the house.  It was only his excellent driving skills that got the truck at the barn.  We had to spend the day before pushing snow and digging out gates.  What a job!

The calves are settled in now and gaining weight.  It's been an adjustment for them though, they've never seen pigs or sheep before.  As all the pens have drifts over the fences, I can't keep the sheep and pigs in their winter pens and the hay feeders have become multi-species salad bars.  Hoping for spring thaw soon!

Friday, March 1, 2013

I can't believe how fast this past month has passed.  Usually the months in the dead of winter pass so slowly, but this year has been so different.  There have been so many new arrivals in the barnyard, new lambs, goats, calves and now,  two litters of pigs.  These little guys were born when it was -30 outside.  I have a little farrowing barn that we heat so these guys are quite comfortable when it's nasty outside.  The mom is a duroc sow we got last fall.  It's her second litter and we bred her to Boris, our Yorkshire boar.  Everyone is doing well, they are already sneaking out of their pen to run around and explore.  Should have lots of Christmas hams!