how-to

Cure and dry deer heart

This post has been edited and updated with subsequent pictures and info that I have gleanedĀ over the years. — Hunting season means deer hearts are plentiful. It’s common for friends to drop off their hearts to me and tell me to do with them what I may. My original article wrote about curing what’s in […] Read More

Prosciutto, or dry cure country ham

I tread lightly on this terrain as this is the first prosciutto I have ever made. Not only that, but there are so many styles, and so many beliefs when it comes to drying a whole ham. You apparently can’t just call a ham a prosciutto (singular for prosciutti) because a real prosciutto starts with […] Read More

Processing meat chickens at home

More and more, I try to find ways to produce my own food. We have a ways to go before we’re completely self-sustaining, but through each experience, I feel more informed, more prepared… and just more satisfied. For me, meat from the store has beenĀ just plain disappointing. I question everything from how commercial animals are […] Read More

Make Pancetta Arrotolata

A good primer for those delving into charcuterie is to make pancetta. There are several styles and “arrotolata” simply means rolled. This to me is the more familiar style and the one I chose because I like trussing up the meat. Here, I’m just adding to the many articles on the internet on making pancetta. […] Read More

Make a Crystal Radio with your Kid

We had to choose a few electives out of the scout handbook to do with our boys at home. One that stuck out was making a radio. There are a few different ways to build a radio, but the one they say dads used to make with their sons back in the 70’s were the […] Read More

Make Traditional Cheddar Cheese

I “cut the cheese” today. Did you ever wonder where that saying came from? Thing is, I love the smell of cheese when it’s being made, so yeah… I cut it. I found myself drinking the whey too. And why hasn’t anyone eaten curds and whey since Little Miss Muffet? Did she know something we […] Read More

Steamed Dumplings ‘Gyoza’

I love those little Eastern steamed dumplings. What are they? Wontons? Pot-stickers? Gyoza? I’ve heard them called many things, but to me their tasty little things that I need to have now and then. I’ve made them a few times before using a recipe out of one of my Korean cookbooks, but this time around, […] Read More

Build a meat curing and drying chamber

After enough years of cooking and smoking meat, it’s natural for one to venture into the world of curing and drying meat. The art of charcuterie has been around for ages. In Roman law, there were regulations that governed the trade of charcuterie and the French had a profound impact on perfecting it. Charcuterie was […] Read More

Alcohol wash testing for varroa in beehive

I took advantage of the warm day on Saturday after a week of freezing temperatures to check on the beehives. It was a bitter-sweet day, because I have some hives that are really strong and looking good, but I lost two. It’s a sad sight for a beekeeper when one hive is bustling and the […] Read More

Build a backyard chicken coop

See the full gallery with many more pictures on BackyardChickens.com I thought about chickens for almost three years before finally jumping in. Mainly, I wanted to make sure I properly integrated them in to our lifestyle. Having several friends who assured me they were easy and fun surely helped speed up the process, but still, […] Read More