Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Spring is sprung and we have had some lovely rain! This also means mushroom time! I went out yesterday afternoon and collected about 1kg and then this morning another 1/2 kg for breakfast! Will go again this afternoon, and maybe for a couple of days, but as it warms up, they will finish up. Some people are a little concerned about eating wild mushrooms and rightly so. However we have been eating wild mushrooms for many years - I never even liked mushrooms until my husband brought home a hatful one time after we were first married. I'm in Central Queensland and I know I can eat these mushrooms, but if you live anywhere else, PLEASE check with someone who knows before you eat any wild mushrooms. The main thing to look for is pink to brown gills - if they are white under neath, don't even think about it. There are two types of mushrooms that I know of that are brown under - one you can eat and one you can't. If they are brown to goldie coloured on the top, and usually a little pointy, DO NOT eat these ones. The edible ones tend to be almost flat and white on top. Sometimes they can have a little colouring on top, but not too much.

If your mushrooms look like these, they should be pretty right. Last year we had heaps and I made mushroom soup, mushroom sauce, froze some and just generally we ate mushrooms for a week! I will dry some this time, as I think that might be better than freezing. They go very soft and mushie when frozen, but are great for soups and stews. I'll put some of my mushroom recipes on the Recipe Page.
Goodluck! And remember, don't touch them unless they are pinkie brown underneath and not gold on top!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Paddock to Plate

Tomorrow we are taking some ducks to Biloela to be processed (is that the right word?). Because our ducks were such prolific breeders, we've got more ducklings than we could eat, so we will get them professionally killed so that we can sell some. This will be our first paddock to plate experience, so it's a bit exciting. We've already asked around and have orders, but hopefully we will get to keep some! Although....I'm not sure whether we will get full value as I keep the feet for stock and the livers for pate when we do them ourselves. Maybe we'll have to keep the next lot just for us!

We are still in the process of getting the free range pig business off the ground, as there is so much red tape to go through. It bugs me that we have to get all sorts of approvals to have pigs and yet we don't intend managing them and their grazing any different than if they were cattle. Unfortunately the powers that be treat free range pigs the same as intensive shedded pigs. Doesn't make a lot of sense, but why should that surprise me!

The other hold up for us is getting the work done that needs to be done - fences and yards for the pigs. I'm busy with my day job and can't help much. We're thinking of getting backpackers or wwoofers to help out so that may make life easier. Who wouldn't want to come here and be part of our farm enterprise? It should be a novelty for most people I think, to have fresh cows milk, eggs, our own meat from ducks, pigs, cattle and soon we will have goat meat! We have 4 young ones - 2 males and 2 females. We will eat the males and then breed with the females - just to have some meat for ourselves, not to sell.