Thursday, April 16, 2015

Two at a Time

Spring is in the air.  The snow is melting.  The days are getting warmer.  The nights are staying above freezing.  And this is when, not one, but two- TWO!- of my freezers, decide to kick the bucket.  And not just any two, of course, but both of the big freezers. 

If you've been reading here for awhile, you know I usually empty the garage freezer and unplug it in the spring.  Then it gets a good cleaning and sits ready for fall.  I can handle the loss of one freezer.  We've made room in the other two over the course of the winter.  But TWO...

Well, everything had to come in the house.  The little freezer was close to empty.  All of my homemade butter was finished off this winter, we had eaten all of the meat, and only a small box of veggies and assorted breads and buns remained.  I had planned to empty and unplug the little freezer soon.  I thought I could make do with just the large entry way freezer this summer, and cut the hydro bill just a tad.

Breads and buns were thrown out onto the table.  The boys brought in all of the meat from the entry way and garage.  I have a surprising number of roasts and steaks left.  Roasts were piled in the bottom, along with two hams and a turkey, steaks on top, odds and ends all around.  We managed to get almost everything in.

What we didn't manage- several meals worth of ribs that I generally avoid cooking, the doggy stew meat bucket, another small box of fruits and veggies, and some frozen juices.  I am not a rib lover, but they take up a lot of room with all of the bones in them, so they were the first thing to cook.  I've had my two biggest stock pots cooking on the stove, alternating with the pressure canner.

Today I'll also be canning the doggy stew meat.  The boys have been given free range on the juices.  The fruits and veggies- mostly rhubarb, dandelion greens, and bananas- went out to the chickens.  When the 'emergency' items are taken care of, I'll chop, cook and can some of the roasts.  That's partially for 'convenience' summer cooking, partially to make some room in the now overstuffed freezer.  I don't normally can meats, but since I am out of ground beef I figure this will be easier than defrosting and grinding through the summer.  I'll cook very few roasts as roasts in the crockpot through the summer, so most would just sit in the freezer until next fall anyway.

So now I have calves about to calve (milk!), 8 roosters and three hens to butcher, and spring greens to begin foraging, with no freezer to put them into!!

I started checking the local ads last night.  There are a couple of good deals for used freezers, but there's another wee problem.  The trailer is blocked in the second driveway behind 6 feet of snow.  We never plowed it this year.  Do I really need a new to me freezer bad enough to shovel that?  Waiting for the snow to melt seems like a better option for now.

1 comment:

  1. Oh My Gosh. What a problem you have had! At least, you know how to can it the meat. Did your mother have a niche in her freezer over the refrigerator at her house? The boys and chickens must be enjoying the unexpected bounty!

    I need to get a new canner/cooker and start canning meat. I probably would not even need the freezer.

    At least you were able to get right onto the salvage instead of discovering the non-working freezers soon enough.