Pieces & Parts & Goats Milk

Boston butt pork steaks

Dog, cats, ferrets &  Soap Crafters, what do they all have in common?


Dan surprised Jeanette & I today with our special request for

Tails,  Fat Back( what you use for lard), Liver, Heart , & Feet are now all in stock in .


Tails- $4.50 per pound- Not only a great for pets but also great for stews and veggies.

Fat Back  $4 per pound if you want lard or to make your own soap this fat is gold.

Liver-$4  per pound liverwurst, Scrapple or liver pudding you know you want to make your own this summer to go with all those fresh garden veggies. We have a few books in the store to steal some recipes out of for these dishes

Heart- $2.99  per pound great for adventurous eaters (slice and cook like a steak) or for pets

Feet- $2.50 per pound.  These are my secret ingredient to so many dishes. I smoke them then add them to beans, collards and pork bone broth. Oh yes, pork broth should be its own magical food group.

Ears-$4 per pound. Not just a great dog treat, these are also my favorite bar food.  I braise these till tender (280 F in a dutch oven for 2 hours) then slice and fry.

Neck Bone-$4 per pound try a new flavor of  bone broth. If you love beans this will add an extra depth of flavor to them.

Finally Raw Goats Milk ($5 per 1/2 gallon) is back in the store on Fridays and Saturdays. The supply will be limited. Please let Lucy know by Monday if you need an order. Several of the area veterinarians in the area have suggested this for orphaned pets or pets going through medical issues such as Chemo or on raw food diets. Please check with your own veterinarians to see if this is right for you.


Winter, good riddance.

The blast of warm weather has made me think winter will actually end before I die of cold. It also reminded of this picture of the snow melting and curling from our smokehouse against the sunrise. Thanks to Gen for pointing this out. I had walked right by it.

Did I see snow in the forecast for Wednesday?! Argh!

Smoking success

Here you see four gallons of milk, turned into cheese then smoked in the smoke house a few days. It’s been fun trying the things coming out of the smoke house. One lesson I’ve learned already is that when you step in a grab a sample, you really have no idea how smoky it is since you’ve already enveloped yourself in smoke head to toe. Something with no hint of smoke eaten just out of the house will knock your socks off in the kitchen later. We had smoked raisins in our salad and even though they had only smoked a few days, they had a strong smokiness in the salad. Not overpowering but its surprising how well the smoke stays with things.

A few more of the items brought in from my last trip to the smoke house. We still have a month of smoking to go. Anybody need anything smoked?

The smoke house at 7 degrees

On Thursday I fired the smoke house as I do each morning. I just love the look of the house venting a thin stream if smoke. It’s like watching a fire, but more productive. This particular morning it was only 7 degrees when I took this video. That may explain why its so short.

Before I fired the smoke house, I took the opportunity to remove some if the items we have in there smoking. Mostly cheeses. This particular cheese is mozzarella cheese that I made from our milk. It went from warm cheese, to a muslin and hung in the smoke house immediately. It developed a very nice rind and took on a good amount of smoke in a couple of days. I shredded some into the scrambled eggs for breakfast before storing the rest away. Good stuff. Actually breakfast was really good all around. Scrambled eggs(our eggs) with ground pork (our pigs) mozzarella cheese (our milk and our cheese) and cantaloupe. Alas, it’s the wrong season for our cantaloupe. Still, pretty local as an average.

I also pulled the other cheeses we had smoked , along with the cashews. The cashews are no good smoked. They took on a petroleum flavor which isn’t from and fuel as we don’t use any. It’s just the way they taste smoked. Maybe if I had baked them first. Everything else has smoked nicely though. The salt is really good. Any ideas on what to smoke next? We have a month of smoking ahead of us.

More snow pics

The kids first foray into the snow. Yes I am inside where its warm. I have no shame. I had already milked the cow, built a fire in the smoke house, built a fire in the boiler, and was busy making breakfast. I did make it out for sledding not long after.

The smoke house, under its load of snow. We don’t see snow very often so this is a cool picture to me.

There is a stream of smoke coming out but its hard to see against the white background.

First run of the smoke house for 2014.


This weekend the inmates and I finally were able to make smoke. Two of the hams were ready to wash and put into the smoke house, one was washed and put back in the cooler. Inmate Brian is leading this process and has done all the reading and math to make sure we are doing everything correctly. Here you see three hams being soaked down and getting ready to go.


John also helped out with the hams. That’s when he wasn’t busy learning how to weld. We stopped him from welding to pose with a ham. Can you tell what he would rather be doing?


Here he is happy behind the mask. John is working on our new scalding tank. We’ll use this next month during our hog killing class. We had a few small leaks in the bottom that needed to be skinned over. We also made legs so the tank can sit above a fire and be heated by logs.


Brian with one of the hams getting it ready. There is a lot of work getting the hams to this point. We started off with 50 pound feeder pigs and ended up here, ready to go in the smoker. Its a proud moment.


Here is Brian hanging up his last ham of the day. We followed up with a bunch of other stuff so the hams wouldn’t get lonely. You can see all the items we put into the smoker in the following short video.