"We must achieve the character and acquire the skills to live much poorer than we do. We must waste less. We must do more for ourselves and for each other. It is either that or continue merely to think and talk about changes that we are inviting catastrophe to make. The great obstacle is simply this: the conviction that we cannot change because we are dependant on what is wrong. But that is the addict's excuse, and we know that it will not do."
—Wendell Berry

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

More porcine adventures

The three little pigs have become the three big porkers! Still cute in a big muddy piggy way. We will have a slaughter day with a few friends in a couple of weeks. In the traditional way I will help a neighbour slaughter his pigs and then he will help us with ours. These will be mostly for fresh pork and sausages. If I can cadge the secret recipe from a friend I am also going to do a few pickled pork joints. I tried one of his pork joints earlier in the year and it was unlike anything I have ever tasted! He pickles the pork in a brine made with pineapple juice (amongst other things) and generally keeps the recipe a close secret, so wish me luck. I really want a slow roasted pickled pork with crackling on Christmas day.
 Sausage, our sow, is heavily pregnant. She has become a real pet and has a sweet nature. She talks to us each morning with her honks and grunts as we prepare her breakfast and loves a nice scratch on the rump. It is a good thing she is so sweet natured as a 200kg sow could otherwise be quite dangerous . Apart from just enjoying the contact, this is one reason I take pains to tame all of our livestock.
Unfortunately we will probably be moving sausage on to a good home after her next litter. Our setup for pigs relies on having a fallow period after each batch and having a breeding sow in residence does not allow us to do this. This means the pig yards remain bare all year round and this is not good for the land or the pigs. We will be very sorry to see the old girl go. We will also make sure she goes to a good home.
So after her next litter we will be going back to the original plan and buying a batch of weaners once per year. Not as nice as having a tame sow but better for the land.

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