At night, and during the afternoon, the babies curl up in a corner with one another and have a long snooze. The hut is very warm from the sunshine, and they are fed and growing rapidly at this stage, so must sleep a great deal. In a few weeks, they will be more active and run and play all day long. One of the Angora does who lost her twins, is a surrogate mother to a little Pygora girl that was abandoned by her mother. 18 hours later, that mother had another baby, a little boy. The Angora surrogate cannot nurse the Pygora because her teats are much too large for the tiny mother of the baby Pygora, which is Pygmy/Angora, but she does care for her. Two babies are being bottle fed out of this passel of kids, the one whose mother abandoned her and an Angora baby, who was abandoned three days after being loved and cared for by his mother. There has not been a full night's sleep for a week now and the goat keeper is getting quite fatigued. Time for bed, zzzzzzzz.
I am on a Paleo eating plan. It is a diet for the restoration of health, not weight loss, although for some, the weight loss is also a factor. I just want to arrest osteo arthritis, an auto immune condition arising from a leaky gut. The typical North American diet,high in sugar and genetically modified products, has caused problems for a whole lot of people. The specific carbohydrate diet eliminates some of the foods that are problematic, but not all, but autoimmune Paleo, covers the rest. One food that is on the diet is yams. The fats that are recommended are most saturated fat, contrary to what we have been told for the past 20 years. These fries are done in beef tallow and they are delicious. Organic yams , tallow and salt are the only ingredients. Yum!! Try some, won't you?
This is a treat that my mother used to make and is sometimes served for breakfast at The Fat Ewe Farm B & B. The dough is a simple one, just four, salt, yeast and water, but the secret is that it must sit for a day or longer, which develops a sourdough type of flavour.
6 cups of all purpose flour
1 3/4 cups of warm tap water
1 package of instant dry yeast
1 tsp of sea salt
Mix the ingredients roughly in a large pot with a lid. When they are mostly amalgamated, you can adjust the flour or water to make the dough quite stiff, but still pliable. Then put the lid on the pot and leave it on the counter overnight, or put it in the fridge and leave it for a few days. You do not have to knead it.
Heat lard in a pan to a depth of about an inch, and keep on medium heat.
Break off a small lump and stretch it in the hands until it is sort of roundish. Carefully place the stretched dough in the lard. It will immediately bubble and double in bulk. When golden on one side, turn over, but the second side does not take nearly as long, so watch it carefully. Drain on a paper towel or on a rack. Sometimes I sprinkle a tiny bit of sugar and cinnamon on top for a sweeter treat, but the breads are great just as is too. Enjoy!
I have been interested in the preservation of food in a more natural way than the last 100 years. Well, even going back just 40 years, my own mother pickled cucumbers with only salt and water, the way they had been done for a very long time. The only difference is that she used jars, while ages ago, the cucumbers were placed in crocks or barrels. Either way, the method of pickling that she used was lacto fermentation, though I am sure she had never heard those words before.
Lacto fermentation is a method of preserving food through natural fermentation, which causes the "pickling". There is science behind it, but what I needed to know, is whether the method could be used for foods other than cucumbers. Why, yes, is the answer. Almost any vegetable can be lacto fermented, it turns out. I came across a recipe for Pickled Daikon and it was the lacto fermentation method, so I made it. It is delicious and not at all spicy, though Daikon, itself, can be. Now that I have mastered cucumbers, sauerkraut and now Daikon radish, there is no stopping me. No vegetable will be safe. Of course I will try to find real information first, and did buy two books on fermentation, which extends to using cultures and making fermented beverages, cheeses, milks and so on, as well as vegetables.
So, here it is.
Peel a large Daikon radish and cut it into wedges small enough to fit into a jar and be completely submerged under the liquid. This is important. It is better to make the pieces shorter than to try to stuff them under. I am sure they could be cut in rings as well, but to ensure the liquid penetrates easily, the rings should be separated well in the packing.
Mix 1 teaspoon of sea salt or pickling salt with enough water to cover the radish pieces. What I did was pour water over them in the jar and then pour the water out to mix it with the salt, and return the salted water to the jar. I used farm well water that runs through a filter to remove some minerals and iron.
Then the jar needs to be covered to keep bacteria and mold out, but not tightly so the gases created from the process of fermentation can escape. When making the pickles, you could choose to cover and seal the jar tightly, in which case you could get fizzy pickles and that is good too.
I also added seven cloves of garlic to the jar. You could add some spices or chiles, dried, if you like or dill.
Then the jar was left on the counter for a week, the pickles tasted and left two days longer and then tasted again. What a difference the extra two days made in the garlic flavour. The Daikon was good.
I placed a plastic bag upside down over the jar to allow the gas to escape while keeping the molds and bacteria from entering. There are other fancier methods. If you seal the jar, make sure you have sterilized the jar and lid first and that the seal is complete, before storing for a week or two or longer. Place those jars in a cool dark place, but observe them for any spontaneous jars that might explode, though that has never happened to me.
This could not be simpler and results in a crunchy, tasty, garlic Daikon pickle. Delicious!
Sprouts are a valuable part of a balanced winter diet, though they are tasty all year round. Most legumes and beans make excellent sprouts and many grains and vegetable seeds, when sprouted, take on a totally different taste than when they are harvested after growing all summer.
Grain sprouts develop the grain seed, freeing trace minerals and making them more readily absorbed by the body. Aslo, they are protein enhanced rather than carbohydrate rich, and if the grain is sprouted until green appears, an added benefit of vitamins, particularly A, is added to the grain. Sprouting beans is similar, in that the chemical makeup of the beans changes and the food value increases from simply carbohydrate with some protein to vitamin, mineral and protein enriched food.
Sprouting is very simple. Soak the grain, seed or beans overnight in cold water. First rinse and drain the water so that the seed is soaking in fresh clean water. Then as many times as you think about it, but for sure twice daily, rinse thoroughly with clean cold water. Seeds that are hard and unpalatable, absorb the water and the transformation begins. The seeds can be eaten at various stages of sprouting. Grains, particularly wheat, is wonderful when the roots are 2-3 centimeters long. Then it can be ground into a mush and baked creating a rich, nutrient dense bread.
All sprouts are wonderful in salads. The recipe today is simple. Sprouted garbonzo beans and brown whole lentils in a salad.
Spicy Sprouted Brown Lentil and Chick Pea Salad
1/2 cup lentil sprouts (3 days or until green appears)
1/4 cup sprouted garbonzo beans (half inch roots, no green)
1 tablespoon vinegar (I love the spiced)
1 tablespoon sweet chile sauce
Toss lightly and enjoy!