It was a busy week here at the Future Urban Farm (FUF). The week started with the SB leaving on Sunday. At about 11PM. After about 5 hours of almost ready to leave. He is back in the big city :(. I rearranged my babysitting schedule to go to CLAW on Tuesday night, so I did my regular Tuesday sit on Monday, did CLAW and my bosses going away party on Tuesday and more babysitting on Wed. Also on Wed I found out that my car needs a new clutch which will be running me in the $800 range. Glad I didn't give up any of my sitting jobs this week. But, had I been a real adult, I would have been saving up for this so that it wasn't a huge outlay. Apparently I still have a lot of growing up to do.
Then Thursday my friend P. came and picked me up at work and we went to my milk farm where we watched ducks and chickens and goats and cows roam around. The milk lady had called me earlier in the day to say that she was running a little short on cow milk but had some goat if I wanted to try that. Initially I was leery. Which is dumb since I am planning a goat for the FUF so I said yes. We took the milk home and then went to The Local to catch up on gossip etc. Have I mentioned that I LOVE my milk? I mean I LOVE it. I love going to the farm and I love drinking it and I love that I can lay eyes on my cows. *heart* I also love goat milk, which is like fluffy whole cow milk. I don't know how to describe it differently than that. Mine has NO goat mustiness and it tastes almost like the milk has been gently but thoroughly frothed. Like really really good cappuccino foam, not the stiff foam you sometimes get, but the stuff that is done right. But cold. I may stick with a half cow half goat share.
Friday I pulled up my basil plants in expectation of frost. While out in the garden I noticed that my raspberry plants are blooming. Whaaaaa? Anywhoo. I bet last night's frost took care of that nonsense.
Saturday at the market I bought apples. And eggs. And panicked that next week is the last week of the market. What is a girl to do? I really cannot fathom eating store bought eggs ever again. Really. I also ran into someone I knew from back in the day. She is settled on a farm in Crozet with rare breed sheep that she raises and she dyes and weaves the wool. Dyes with natural dyes - she so rocks. When I got home I remembered that making a dye from walnuts was on my list of things to do. I have bushels of walnuts. Currently about two dozen walnuts are soaking inside a cloth bag in some cold water in a bucket on the back porch. I am considering that the bag is not yet dyed a sign that it isn't ready.... I think they have to soak for a week or two. And really, I probably should boil them, though I am afraid they are going to smell really bad. And with the cold weather, I don't really want to open the house.
Also, I am considering a workshop in mushroom growing. The SB thought that it might be a good move for the FUF to have some potential cash crops.
And here is an end of season recipe. Last week at the market one of the farmers was selling eggplant and peppers cheap. I bought a bunch and made ratatouille with lamb. It started with two small onions and a few cloves of garlic chopped up and sauted with a pound of ground lamb. When that was sort of cooked I added 2 mild and 2 hot peppers chopped up and about 6 cups of cubed eggplant. Then I cut around all the spots on the last of my tomatoes and threw them in as well. I added some bay and coriander and cumin. I added some white wine to keep the moisture up so that the eggplant would cook properly. I let it simmer until everything was really soft then I stuck it in the fridge for a couple of days for the flavors to meld. I ate some of it for breakfast this AM with cous cous and fresh yogurt on top. Yummy.
So I was avoiding the cold and perusing the internet and found this website with this recipe. So of course I had to try it. And people, I followed the instructions. Also, since I had to get the pasta maker out anyway, I went ahead and made some pasta. Which I haven't done in YEARS. Whenever I do it I wonder why I don't do it more often, as it doesn't take that long and the results are fantastic. I think I am going to saute some cabbage and onion in butter and dump that over this pasta with lots of salt and pepper... Real comfort food. Excellent with roast pork and almost as fine on its own. This comes from the old country.... Eastern Europe where my mothers family is from. Below are some photos I got before my camera ran out of batteries.
The first crackers
The pasta drying on dishtowels