Happy New Year Guys!
Today starts a new adventure for our house & family……
Well, not really as “new” as much as it is “a return.”
We are heading into a second round of the “homesteaders food challenge.”
Just to recap, I inflicted a personal challenge on myself (and my willing family members) last summer. We set out to eat only foods that we raised, killed, grew, or picked with our own hands for 101 days.
This challenge was unique from other food related challenges in that no matter where I ate, I only ate foods from my own hands. This made for a summer where I was hauling around a cooler of food wherever I went. I took my own dinner to restaurants. I packed my own foods to friends and families houses. I turned down things like grass fed ribeyes and king crab legs because I did not raise them.
We are all in food comas from Christmas. We are bloated and having problems with our wranglers. It’s winter and I don’t have a garden to grow, produce to can, or fencing that needs to be stretched. I can spend my days cooking and preparing and feeding people – which is precisely what I’ll be doing for the next couple months. If there’s one thing I learned from the first round of this challenge it’s that when you eat only what you produce – you spend a lot of time producing food (and cooking it).
It is winter and there is no garden to feed us right now. This will make the challenge more difficult than the first time.
The goal is 50 days. Our original challenge lasted 101 days & we made it with just a couple minor hiccups. 50 seemed like a reasonable time that could be accomplished even though it’s winter.
What will we eat?
- Everything we canned last summer – We put up approximately 400 cans (that’s jars) of food last summer.
- Everything we froze last summer – Onions, peppers, peaches, spinach, turnip greens, sugar snap peas, black berries, pumpkin puree, etc. Fresh from the garden in icicle form.
- Food in storage we grew last summer: spaghetti squash, butternut squash, onions, garlic, sweet potatoes, turnips, etc.
- All the fresh milled baked goods we want to make. We use whole wheat berries & grind them into powder. This makes us the most delicious, nutritious baked goods you’ve ever seen.
- Sensational things from our 2 Jersey Dairy Cows – Milk, butter, cream, cheese, buttermilk, lovely, magnificent, raw dairy!
- Meat galore – I have so much meat in storage right now from the past year that I actually busted the back out of a freezer trying to pack it all in there. Grrrr. I had to sell a pig because we didn’t have space for all the meat. We have chickens, ducks, deer, rabbits, pigs and a cow in neat, little, vacuum-sealed packages.
What about fresh fruit and veggies? I don’t want my kids (or me) to end up suffering or lacking in necessary nutrients found in live foods (especially during cold & flu season). For this reason, I think we are going to allow 3 fresh foods during the 50 days. I’m thinking apples, carrots and something else (probably beets). I’m trying to stay true to my Ole Kentucky Home and pick foods that grow here and would most likely adorn the root cellars of days gone by. I also want foods that can make an easy snack (apples), side dish (carrots) and pack some nutrition (beets).
What else? I’m not sure. We plan to stick to the original rules which means we will be sweetening things with real maple syrup (or raw honey – my daughter’s favorite). We’ll be using some simple seasonings like salt & pepper. I’ll be consuming coffee at a record capacity so I don’t eat my young. And, I’ll be medicating myself with wine in order to survive the detox and make it to the end.
I’ll keep you posted on the progress & the menu. I’m fairly certain we won’t starve. 🙂
We could not be more excited to begin this journey a second time. Because it is winter, the menu and meals will look quite different than they did last summer when we first accomplished the task.
I’ll be posting on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter as we head down the path of eating only what we grow. Please follow along! It’s going to be hard. It’s going to be challenging. It’s going to be fun!
50 days starts today – January 2, 2017.
Follow along by joining the newsletter here…. you’ll get the Eating Guide for free when you do.
Happy New Year Everyone!