Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Gate Repair And Stew Making

Today was fix the gate day.
I spent time rounding up nails, a measure, the hammer, wire and boards.
Amazing how much time it takes to get everything assembled to start work.
The board under the gate has rotted away.
The wooden fence pretty much needs to be replaced
so I'm just going to do patch up work and cover up the hole.
No major repair work.

I added another board to cover the hole.
I used thin wire to attach the board to the gate.
I looked for heavy wire and forgot about the barbed wire roll.
I also added a board to the post by the lock to close a gap.

Kristine just came home and reported that the gate
was hard to open because it dragged on the ground.
tomorrow I will cut some barbed wire and use it
to tighten up the board and snug it closer to the bottom of the gate.

I'm trying to cut down on the chances of a predator
sneaking in for a chicken dinner.
I don't want things to be too easy for them.

I then remembered I needed to make our dinner.
Something that will cook while I work outside.
(I collected more kindling and did a bit more leaf raking.) 

Quick and easy beef stew soup.
Well, that's what I call it...
If I thickened the broth with corn starch or flour it would be stew.
But, I like the broth, so, it's stew soup.

Today the meat was frozen, so I did things the quick way.
I usually brown the meat when I remember to let it defrost.
But not today.

I put the cast iron pan on the stove on low heat.
And added the chunk of frozen stew meat.
I put garlic cloves, fresh rosemary and sage from the garden 
on top of the frozen meat with salt and pepper.
A bay leaf.
I poured in a few cups of water.
Then I got all the cut up vegetables, onion, carrots, celery, potatoes, peppers,
and put them in the pot on top of the frozen stew meat.
More water and salt.
A vegetable bullion cube.
Put on the lid.
Put the pot on the wood stove and let it cook slowly for about six hours.

mmm... meat is very tender.
Tastes good.

I would have put the string beans in the pot too
but there wasn't enough room.
I pretty much add whatever is in the fridge.

I do thicken the broth sometimes.
Then we can have proper stew.

The chickens luck out when I make stew because they get the carrot peels.

These chickens are buddies.

Curly the Cochin and two Buff Brahmas, Little and Big.

These three hens are fairly low in the pecking order
and stick together most of the time.

Little is the brave one of the group.
When I walked over to where they were eating a mix of oyster shell and corn,
Curly and Big moved away,
but Little just stayed put and kept on eating.

Little is brave or very hungry...?

No eggs.



Frugal Queen said...

it must be the weather for it, i'm making stew today

LindaG said...

Thanks so much for sharing your recipe! :-)