Monday, November 10, 2008

Updates on this-n-that

In case you're wondering whatever happened ...

Katherine's wrist
The doctor said she has a tiny cyst in her wrist, so tiny and so buried that they probably couldn't find it to remove it, so she will just have to live with it. Occupational therapy starts tomorrow. Katherine was actually hoping for something more dramatic that could be fixed by surgery. Being told that hand therapy is her only option was upsetting. She told me that she doesn't complain about it much anymore because it just hurts all the time, so she's learned to not use her left hand and just live with it.

We have so many fencing projects around here, I don't think there's any chance we'll be done before the ground freezes. I thought Mike had treated some more posts, but he hasn't. He only managed to get them cut from downed trees that he found across the creek. Tomorrow is Veteran's Day here in the U.S., which means no school for him, so he's hoping to get the posts painted with the waterproofing stuff, so that he can get them in the ground this weekend around the pond. Once we get that area fenced in, we are hoping it will reduce our poultry losses to coyotes.

The fence in the far pasture is still wrapped in wool. The llamas seem to be doing a good job guarding those pastures now, so that fence is not a top priority.

Naughty turkeys
The turkeys that flew up into the tree Thursday night don't seem to know what to do with themselves now that most of their friends are gone. They used to stick pretty close to their house when the whole flock of 20 was there, but now that there are only three, we are finding them all over the place. A couple of them are exceptional flyers. They were in the front yard when I got home from teaching this afternoon, and I sent Jonathan out there to chase them back to their pasture. They flew about 200 feet, looking like pterodactyls. Their wing span is four or five feet.

What's on the menu?
We're eating a lot of turkey and chicken now. Last night we had a roasted turkey breast, goat milk gravy, homemade rolls, baked potatoes, green beans, and apple crisp. All of it was homegrown, except the potatoes. We also had an Illinois wine to go with it, so although we didn't make the wine, it was local. We planted eight grape vines last year, and only three made it to this year. I hope they come back next year, but we should probably plant a few more. I don't know if three vines will produce enough grapes for us.

The turkey breast came from a 20# bird, so it was huge. Tonight I'll be making a Mexican casserole with some of it, and tomorrow will probably be turkey tetrazzini. The Mexican casserole is a great way to use up the tortilla chip crumbs that are in the bottom of every bag.

Mexican turkey casserole

1 chopped onion
1 T. oil
1 pound of peeled tomatoes (16 ounce can, if you don't have frozen)
1/2 cup canned banana peppers (a 4 ounce can of chilies works if you don't have banana peppers)
1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
enough crushed tortilla chips to cover the bottom of the pan
1 c. broth (I use vegetable broth, but if you have turkey broth, that works also)
3 cups of cubed turkey meat
8 ounces of shredded cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 2-quart baking dish.
Saute onion in oil for about five minutes or until tender. Add chopped tomatoes with juice, tomato sauce, and peppers.
Crush enough tortilla chips to cover the bottom of your baking pan, and pour broth over them. Spread chopped up turkey over the chips. Sprinkle cheese on top of the turkey, and pour the onions and tomatoes over the cheese. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Garnish with sour cream, taco sauce, and/or green onions (my favorite).

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