Patrick was coming home from uni, so I thought well I may as well make sure he has a good feed when he arrives so decided to cook the new Christmas rolled lamb recipe and test it out on the family. Poor Patrick arrived home with a nasty cold which, though it did not put him off the process of finally eating a roast dinner with yorkshire pudding, did however render his taste buds useless. The rest of us pronounced the lamb delicious. In fact the only thing needed to add to the roasting pan to make gravy was a little vegetable water, the meat juices and stuffing had provided all the flavour needed. I think it is ready to be released on the public.
In the photos the lamb has been slow roasted at about 140 degrees C for 4 and a half hours, though you can slow it down or speed it up as you require. We had a very hectic weekend preparing for our carpenter who was coming on Monday to help us carry on with the new house build so we had to leave the house and "do stuff" whilst the meat was cooking. The convenient thing about slow roasting is that the meat is ready when you are. Takes the stress out of life I think, always a good plan at Christmas time.
The lamb can be cooked more quickly and it will be equally delicious.
If you would like pink lamb (15 mins/lb + 15 mins at 180 degrees C)
Now we are sufficiently fed it is time to progress to the building part and here is Gavin posing elegantly next to the steel beam that I turfed the children out of bed before double figures (!) on a Monday morning to help move. Many hands make light work. And in fact it did. First floor in progress. Boards to go down, windows in, then it will feel like a proper house. There is a lot of work to do. Thank goodness for creative builder/carpenters.
See you all soon
One Long Eating Weekend
Last weekend was Gavins birthday so we decided to try out a ham that I had put into cure a couple of months ago. Being slightly absent minded this weekend I decided that a 3 kilo joint of ham would not be sufficient meat for ourselves, 4 adults and 1 child, and our friends from down the road, 3 adults and 1 child, so I decided to go and supplement our tiny ham with a purchase of not one but 2 chickens to go with the tiny ham.
Well what can I say the meal was in fact an epic eating fest. Poor Patrick ate so much I thought he was going to expire, needless to say we had a whole chicken and half the ham roast left. No matter, it was efficient use of the oven being on and we have consumed chicken and ham salad and chicken risotto subsequent to that event.
Apologies for not inviting everyone round to help eat all the meat which was deliciously awesome.
I will see you all soon preferably after 2 now much needed pilates class to help balance the equilibrium of an inordinate amount of over-eating. Yum yum.
I Need Longer Arms
So there I was watching Friday Download with Number 3 where they were showing various mobile phone gadgets, one of which was an extended arm so that you can hold your phone and take a "selfie" from further away. What a load of old rubbish says Mum....... Well I went to Bordeaux on Monday with my friend to do a little shopping for that event that will happen later on in the year and guess what, my arms are too short. Here is my attempt at a "selfie" at which Emily will laugh hysterically I suspect as the main subject is a bottle, which to my shame also happens to be a water bottle. Oh well better luck next time must add that gadgety thing to my shopping list just need to google it and find out what it is called. The Place for those who don't recognise it is Place du Parlement and very dramatic it was there on Monday with thunder, heavy rain, light showers and sunshine during lunch.
I will be cooking a homemade ham this weekend to celebrate Gavins birthday I will let you know how it goes. Can you believe this will be the first time I have ever cooked a ham let alone having made the ham myself as well. Should be good. I will take a pic for next weeks blog.
We lit the fire this week mainly to take the damp out of the house and I think we have become "localised/Dordognified" after 10 years of living here and we now have the beginnings of an impressive winter wood pile at the entrance to our farm. Only another 6 trailers to load and unload before we have enough for the whole winter.
Enjoy your weekend wherever you are
See you soon
Chickens and Dogs
Here is a photo of my nearly big chickens Blackies, Whities and Speckeldies. I see have they have made themselves at home on my bench this week so not sure what that is going to be like to sit on next spring.Also not quite sure how to dissuade birds from perching, or whether in fact I ought to or not, as our Border Collies can be a little too enthusiastic herding, and occassionally find tail feathers accidentally in their mouths. As you can see their tail feathers are not super long yet so I would hate for the whole dog/chicken experience thing to end badly.
So a quick up date. The insurance papers are in, with regard to the dog sheep incidents we have had through the summer, and now we wait to see how much the insurance companies will agree to pay out. I asked how long they thought it might take and the response was unsurprisingly vague. Ho hum better start looking for some replacement sheep before we have to declare our sheep numbers in January. However it is not the best time of year to be doing that, a lot of shepherds are actually lambing or preparing to lamb right now.
As you are all aware the modern technology we have these days to provide telly has a habit of disappearing during heavy rain or dense cloud movement, so last night nearly turned into a disaster of epic proportions when we started to get a break up of signal during the final of The Great British Bake Off. Thank goodness tranquility was restored when we changed channel to the south west BBC channel and picture quality resumed. I was on the edge of my seat with all the collapsing sails and turny bits on the top of the showstopper cakes. But was very happy with the result, just wish sometimes we could have an edible, cookery programme, telly experience.
Hope the rain lays off a little for the market this weekend.
By the way we have just passed our one year anniversary for the Franklin Farm Blog.... Strangely the family was not surprised that I have managed to find something to prattle about every week for a year;-)
See you all soon
I am farming sheep and goats on the Dordogne/Gironde border with my husband and our 3 children. We have an on farm butchery and sell our meat direct to the public via the markets and delivery points in our local area