Restocking the Freezer

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We picked up the first of our two pigs from the processor yesterday and now our large freezer is full of what we believe to be the best pork available.

We’re going to keep the other three pigs until they weight at least 400 pounds each, then we’ll have them made into whole-hog sausage as we did last year. The sausage was a big hit last year and it sold out quickly, but we missed having the other cuts available so this year we’re offering both.

Being a farmitarian, I only eat meat from animals that come from this farm. So it’s been a long time since I had any sausage.  But there’s a pound of it thawing in the refrigerator now and tomorrow morning’s breakfast will include sausage gravy.  I’m hoping there is some barbecue in my near future too.

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25 comments on “Restocking the Freezer

  1. Dani says:

    Wonderful!! Congratulations – and well done 🙂

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    • Bill says:

      Thanks Dani. It’s a satisfying feeling to know that we produce nearly all our food and are able to help lots of other people eat well too. And I’m very happy to have sausage for breakfast again. 🙂

      Like

  2. nebraskadave says:

    Bill, I did a Google search for farmitarian and found almost all the links found were from your blog posts going back a couple years. It’s a good way to know how your meat was raised and where it came from. I do like sausage for breakfast but don’t really eat it too often. Breakfast is made for frying pans. Cast iron are the best. Fried potatoes with onions and green peppers, bacon or sausage, and eggs over medium is one of my special breakfasts that I like. As I have said I don’t get it too often because the day starts too fast to fix it, eat it, and clean up after it. Since I am basically a household of one, as far as breakfast at home goes, it’s a two hour process. Only during he winter months do I have that much time in the morning to use for such things. Most days it’s a brunch in mid morning and then I’m good until about 3 or 4 in the afternoon when the main meal is eaten. Do you make your own sausage or have it done to specifications?

    Have a great freezer stocking day.

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    • Bill says:

      Yeah, I adopted the word “farmitarian” a few years ago and have mentioned it from time to time in my posts. I probably should have linked the post where I defined it. But it appears you found it on you own. 🙂

      This morning I had fried potatoes (fried with onions and peppers) and sausage gravy. All from the farm, except for the bread, which my wife made from scratch.

      I usually work outside for a hour or two, then come in and have breakfast between 8 and 9. Back when I was living the office life I never ate breakfast. Now I would never voluntarily skip it.

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  3. shoreacres says:

    Oh, I wish I lived closer. Do you ship? 🙂 Pan sausage is one of the wonders of the world, as far as I’m concerned. We always put sage in ours. The very best, though, was what we called potato baloney [sic]. It’s a Swedish sausage made with potato, onion, pork and beef, and it’s the best thing in the world. Once it’s in the casing, it’s boiled to prepare it. My mouth is watering right now!

    I’m going to be posting a link to your blog over on another site. A photographer friend in Florida is getting upset about GMOs and corporate agriculture. I think she’ll find much here of interest.

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    • Bill says:

      I’ve never heard of potato baloney but it does sound delicious. Good sausage is one of my favorite things. I haven’t had any for about 9 months so it’s a real treat to have it back. Part of me is hoping it doesn’t sell as fast as it did last year. 🙂

      Yeah, folks who take exception to the ways of industrial agriculture will find a sympathetic ally on this blog. Thanks for spreading the word.

      By the way, the forecast low here tonight is 23 and it is supposed to be colder than that later this week. Almost all of our fall crops are in serious jeopardy. That is the nature of farming I suppose. Hope your plants stay safe and warm.

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  4. valbjerke says:

    Farmatarian – I like that. We do the same – if we’re out of beef, pork, chicken, vegetables, etc. we just wait til we can raise more. This year has been particularly banner now that we have the dairy cow. We’ve had goats before for milk and cheese, but with the cow I now have an entire rack in the freezer full of butter. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bill says:

      Homemade butter. Now that is good stuff. Haven’t had any in a long time. I remember the special stamp my Granny would put on the top of her cakes of butter. 🙂

      I like having a diet based upon what we have from the farm. Of course that used to be how nearly everybody ate. Now I guess it makes us weird. Which is fine by me.

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  5. Leigh says:

    “Farmitarian” Love it! I absolutely believe you when you say it’s the best pork around. What can be better than homegrown and homefed? Interesting you let your hogs for sausage grow to 400 pounds. I confess I’m still in the learning stage about pigs (and ours, being a small heritage breed will never grow that big), so I love reading what others do and how they do it.

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    • Bill says:

      I think the “experts” say pigs should be processed at about 250 pounds. Old-time farmers around here would think it crazy to kill a pig when it’s that small. 400-450 would be the norm. Of course back in the old days (as in when I was growing up) you had to wait until it was good and cold to kill and dress hogs. So that were just whatever size they were. A pig born in the early spring would be that big by late fall early winter though. I’ve read that consumers prefer pork from leaner pigs, but I’ve also read that consumers have just come to expect that because that’s what the industry gives them. Pigs don’t convert feed to weight as efficiently after they get to about 250, which is the maximum profit point for the industry. That’s the main reason pigs aren’t grown out to 400+ any more.

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  6. farmerkhaiti says:

    Farmitarian! I love that term! And I am one as well, I have never met anyone else like that, which makes my heart so happy and I am glad we’ve been able to connect. Your pork is ruby red gorgeous, from such happy pigs. Enjoy!!!!!

    Like

    • Bill says:

      So there are at least two of us. 🙂 Glad to know I’m not alone.
      It’s good to have pork in the freezer again and to be able to provide it to our customers. Yesterday I thought a lot about what you said–every pig we raise, eat and sell this way is one less pig coming from a factory farm.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Joanna says:

    We have to work a little more on the meat side of things this year, but we will have lamb soon. We are going to get a young ram, breed him to our three ewes and then slaughter him. Hopefully that way we have more lamb of our own next year (we will aim to have May lambs – more sensible for us). Chickens too will be later, when we are confident which ones are cockerels (roosters) which need culling. I do buy pork from our local butcher, but it is nothing like the pork we were given by our neighbour raised on milk and potatoes mainly, that was amazing. Tonight we had moose from a tin, but it was from a local hunt and is just the excess meat that is canned. Rather nice it was too. So our aim will be to be a farmatarian too (although pork won’t be on that list, African Swine Fever means too many risks at the moment) but this will hopefully be supplemented by meat from neighbouring farms and hunts.

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    • Bill says:

      That’s a shame about the Swine Fever. I don’t eat a lot of meat, but I do enjoy good pork. It would be a pity to not have it.

      I’ve never had moose, but venison is the only red meat I eat now. Every year I take a few of the seemingly hundreds of deer that live on this farm. That, plus some of our pork, our extra roosters and fish I catch out of our pond supplies all the meat I want and need. My wife is a vegetarian, so I’m only feeding one at this point.

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      • Joanna says:

        We don’t eat a lot of meat either. Neither of us are vegetarian and I have managed to convert my husband over the years to not expecting meat at every meal. His father, lovely man though he was, would not have coped with that.

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  8. That pork looks fabulous! And I love the labelling. Gotta work on that for here. I’m just transitioning to farmitarian myself – there’s meat in the freezer from off farm that needs to be used up before the transition is complete. And I’ll probably redefine the term for myself, since I buy lamb from a friend who raises it as I would, and plan to continue doing that. I know of someone here who does what you’re planning – turns a whole hog into sausage, and she always sells out – at $10/lb, no less. That is a high price for sausage round here.

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    • Bill says:

      Re. the labeling, I wish we’d included some references to our practices (“pasture-raised”, “GMO-free”, etc.) We have little stickers that we can put on the packages for market, but I’d prefer to have it printed right on the label.

      $10/lb is a very good price. Last year we sold our whole-hog sausage for $6.50/lb, which was too low. We haven’t figured out the price for this year yet. We’re selling the sausage from these pigs for $7/lb, and the whole-hog will be more.

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  9. Darn, I wished we lived near you. 🙂 –Curt

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  10. EllaDee says:

    I’ll never manage farmitatian (love the term as well) but I’m working at close as I can on knowing the provenance of our food. It takes a lot of work but not near as much as work as producers such as yourselves put in both to physically grow the food and put the message out there. You deserve every mouthful of that good food you eat, dollar you earn and satisfaction you derive. Enjoy 🙂

    Like

    • Bill says:

      Thanks EllaDee. Farmitarianism isn’t for everyone. The next best thing is to be a mindful shopper and eater. Eaters have great responsibility these days. On them rests the fate of small farms like ours. Whether corporate industrial agriculture will take over the entire food supply depends upon their food choices. Thanks for standing up for the good guys.

      Like

  11. vpfarming says:

    Sounds tasty. We just got our first batch of 4 feeder pigs. Love to watch them work in the garden. Can’t wait to try some of the sausage. Do you do links or only ground sausage? Reason I ask is I wonder about casings….

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    • Bill says:

      We only do it ground and packaged in one pound packs. Link sausage isn’t popular here. This is sage-based country sausage cooked in patties country.

      I really enjoy having pigs on the farm (and in the freezer). Glad you’ve got some on your place now.

      Like

  12. zambianlady says:

    Hmmm, hmmm, can almost taste the good wholesomeness of the pork. Congratulations on living off your land. I am not sure I can ever get to that stage myself. Bon apetit!

    Like

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