We had a great success with the pigs this year. The flavour from our apple reared pork is second to none. We raised two healthy, albeit a little on the portly side, pigs. It isn’t that easy getting up every morning to feed the animals but just knowing that we had a part to play in their growth, was well worth it. Even knowing that they never had an antibiotic or got sick is a huge plus when you consume this meat.
We have now moved on to rearing ducks and geese. I took a trip to the Portlaoise poultry fair and purchased 4 Chinese geese and 10 ducklings which are 5 Aylesbury ducks and 5 Mallard ducks. We intend to raise these birds for meat.
The geese are going to be perfect for Christmas. I can already taste the goose fat roast spuds. I’m also going to make ethical Foie Gras with the goose livers. I know that foie gras has a designated place of origin in the south west of France and to be called foie gras the goose has to be force feed corn. Well our geese will not be force feed corn and I’m sure they will produce a fabulous liver. It’s all very exciting living this lifestyle. The culinary ideas just keep on flowing. But all is not all sweet down on our model farm. We had a duck die. We think one of the bigger ducks may have broken it’s neck. Davinia and Abigail tried their hardest to make the duck better. But I knew what the eventual outcome would be. The girls lost there lives when they realised what had to be done. I had to ring the ducks neck to put it out of it’s misery. This was an experience I really would have wished that I didn’t have to share with my daughter. But we dealt with the reality of the situation. I had to explain to Abigail that farming life is tough, difficult, unfair and that sometimes animals can get sick just like humans. It was a hard talk. But most importantly we spoke about it and I listened to her concerns. Of course it’s ok to get upset about these things and the truth is I was pretty cut up myself. But do you know what? Life moves pretty fast and you just have to get after it and move on. Abigail is an amazing kid with a massive heart and intelligence beyond her years. I sometimes say to Davinia that we have a six year old going on sixteen with tantrums and all.
I’m really looking forward to all of our new recipes with these ducks and geese. So keep following us and enjoy.