Wild Moon Cottage is a small working homestead in the pristine Ozark Mountains. We have dairy goats, poultry, organic herb and vegetable gardens, a start of a tiny fruit orchard, several black walnut trees, wild berries and fields of wildcrafting goodness. We raise our own milk, our own eggs, much of our own medicine and food. I do laundry by hand, make my own vinegar, candles, soap, bread, cheese ........ For a living I am an artist and herbalist. My goal for myself and our homestead is to be as self sufficient and self sustaining as possible.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Art Of Simple Living - Part 1

I think one of the most important parts of living simply, or frugally, is to be able to enjoy it. By truly enjoying a simpler life it makes the actual doing that much easier. I also think living frugally and living simply go hand in hand. Of course you can do one without the other but, together they compliment and help fulfill one another.


Stretching food (meat)

Baked Ham, have as a big meal with veggies and all. If there's enough, make a second meal of leftovers. Slice remaining ham for sandwiches and thin ham steaks. When making sandwiches, cut to fit the bread then save the pieces in a baggie to add o beans, rice or pasta. Stretch one good slice of ham further by cutting it up, fry it a little then add to scrambled eggs and eat with toast or in a tortilla or pita. With any left over pieces you can also make ham salad, which is nice on crackers for entertaining.

Whole roasted chicken, have as a meal with vegetables and breads. If there's enough, have a second meal of leftovers. Remove all meat from the bone, every bit of it. Cut it into small bits and use some to make a nice chicken salad for sandwiches and crackers, some for chicken fajitas and some for rice with suace. Put the bones in a big pot of water, enough to cover all plus about an inch, boil for at least an hour. Strain out bones and ladle the stock into sections of a muffin pan, about 1 cup each, or what ever size you have. Freeze until hard then remove to large freezer baggies. Now you have a good rich chicken stock to use in rice, soup, broth ...

Roast Beef, have as a meal with vegetables and all, a second meal with leftovers. Slice some roast for sandwiches and cube some roast for stew. Make stew with leftover juice of roast, meat and chunked vegetables. Cut pieces smaller and use mashed potatoes, flour or cornstarch to thicken for a hearty beef vegetable soup. In a baking dish add meat, a little stock, corn, carrots peas (whatever you have) and top with mashed potatoes for Shepherd's Pie. Bake until potatoes lightly brown.

With leftover vegetables and meat make a potpie, simply add a little flour or cornstarch to some meat stock, add leftover veggies (you can even use mashed potatoes to thicken) and meats to baking pan, pour thickened stock mixture over and dollop on some slightly thinned biscuit dough. Bake at around 350 till golden brown on top.

Cooked meats keep well in the freezer and can be portioned for meals ahead of time. The above ideas apply to all meats. All bones can be boiled for broth and stock and all stock can be frozen in portions.

One cup or pod of stock from the freezer can be turned into quick gravy to eat on potatoes, breads or biscuits. One way to eat bread that's slightly stale is to eat it with gravy (or save for meatloaf). To make gravy from stock simply add a stock pod to a medium pot and melt over medium heat. When fully melted bring to boil and add flour or cornstarch, reduce heat and cook until thickened. Pepper well and serve over whatever.

Meats can also be canned with a pressure cooker and a lot of care. Or dried and turned to jerky. I've never attempted either but it can be done :)


That's it for now but I have a lot more and will add it as I can :)

Namaste everyone !


Peggy said...

Great ideals Juli! I have a pot of chicken soup on the back of the stove made from leftovers with some noodles thrown in.

fly tie said...

i like and agree with what you said about enjoying living simply/frugally. this is how i live, and it just makes sense to me.

great tips. much like what i recall members of my family doing as i was growing. i take great pleasure in reading these sorts of things

rockin muse said...

I am so glad I found you! I have missed you very much back on the homestead.

I have added you to my blogroll and will be checking back often to see the latest adventures.

Many Ju Ju's to you my friend!


Mrs.Ruiz said...

I left an award for you on my blog

Mrs.Ruiz said...

I hope you share some of your cookie recipes, the oatmeal chocolate bars sound yummy, and you dont even have to bake them:)))

J said...

Been catching up reading your blog. I love my visits here. You give us all such a sense of peace.
Blessing to you and Niki.