Thursday, September 23, 2010

Autumn goings-on

I put the calf in the stall last night so I'd have lots of milk this morning; I'm having a good time experimenting with cheese and making butter.  When I got up this morning, I wondered why Bonnie wasn't bawling and bellowing for Clyde; normally when she's separated from her calf overnight, she gets quite vocal.  
When I got to the barn lot, I noticed the sliding door to the stall I'd put Clyde in was open about three inches.  I peeked in and realized the calf wasn't there.  Obviously, Bonnie managed to push the door back a little with her head (I've seen her trying this) and the calf managed to push out through the small opening.  
I called them up again, got the calf in the stall again, and this time, shut Bonnie out of the small lot so she can't get near the sliding door.  I'll milk this evening.  
I'm trying my hand at making ricotta cheese today.  I had no idea you could make something out of the whey that is left after making cheese; it's practically clear.  You wouldn't think there was anything there of substance.  But when it's heated to almost boiling, it looks like... wallpaper paste!  Yeah, that's it.  Don't ask me what I'll do with the ricotta cheese if it turns out; I read that it's highly perishable.  
I gave in and ordered a dairy thermometer, a much cheaper version that I had originally looked at.  My candy thermometer just isn't accurate enough to suit me.
Cliff and I went out in the pasture and picked up black walnuts yesterday, and I got a few more this morning.  I'm in this hunter-gatherer mode lately.  So are the mosquitoes hiding in tall grass where the walnuts had fallen.  They were ecstatic to have a warm-blooded creature actually show up where they're living.  
My son-in-law came in last night and showed me how to remove my mini-blinds.  Of course, now I'm totally out of the mood to clean blinds; I'm busy hunting, gathering, and cheese-making.  However, it's good he took one down for me and showed me how it's done, because now I am forced to do this task that desperately needs to be done.  
Iris has decided that I should go outside any time she goes, and almost refuses to go alone... I practically have to push her out the door.  I guess she got used to me going outside for my coffee when dawn was coming so early and thinks she requires my companionship.  
This is the first house dog I've ever owned that will not potty on command; she goes when she's ready, and not before.  Also, like many dogs, if the grass is wet or if it's storming, she doesn't want to "go".  I finally got her to the point that she will pee in the nice, dry barn if it's been over twelve hours since she last relieved herself.   Crazy mutt.  


  1. Ricotta cheese? Seriously? That would make some fabulous lasagna. You make the cheese, I'll make the lasagna!

  2. I was thinking the same thing Rachel! Mmmmm

  3. Anonymous10:32 AM

    Looks like two people beat me to the lasagna thing! Sounds good! Karen

  4. Yep, that is the only use I know of for ricotta cheese too. I often use cottage cheese instead of it though.

  5. Lindie1:15 PM

    I made a stuffed chicken breast last week. The breasts were too big so I cut them in half and made a pocket in each one. Stuffed it with ricotta mixed with herbs. Wrapped a bacon slice around each one and baked it. It was good.

  6. Anonymous1:31 PM

    Crazy like a fox. Dog? Rascals soon know what they can get us to do!

  7. Let us know how it works out for you with the black walnuts. We read up on how to "work them" last year and decided it was just too much trouble -- we don't have enough to take to a processor to hull etc. etc.

  8. The renters said the cows kept them awake with their mooing Tuesday night after John took the babies to market. I think he had 16 this time. Must have been quite a chorus, you think?

  9. Maybe you should change his name to Houdini! I know what you mean about the hunting and cooking this time of year. I am in that mode too but have to limit my efforts as I am almost to a 30 pound weight loss, ten more to go.....sigh..... I too like ricotta in lasagna. I remember my grandmother making cows butter and she had the thing that made an imprint on it. Those were the days!

    I'm going to check out some of your shout outs, they sound good!


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