Wednesday, July 6, 2011

New Addition

Xi Wang

It has been a while since I updated my blog. It is winter now and it hasn't been overly cold, thank goodness. Since my last blog there has been a new addition to our farm family. From the picture you would've guessed it is a goat. He was given to us by a very dear uncle. Initially we were supposed to collect him after he got weaned off his mother but he got sick and wasn't expected to survive but he did and he came to live with us.

On his arrival he was very attached to me as I'd held him and calmed him down all the way back to our farm. As expected the other two animals didn't quite take to him and Honey the sheep kept chasing him and terrorizing him so we had to tie her down for the night. It took a few days before they all settled down with each other. Now they are best friends although nobody enjoys Xi Wangs horns too much. Sometimes he can be rough and I have to be weary of him too. To me he is a miracle baby which gave us hope and I guess that is why I named him Xi Wang (hope in mandarin, I think) My mandarin admittedly is a bit rusty since I get very little to no practice here. I keep up by watching chinese movies on the internet so that I don't loose all of it.

Life on the farm is ever evolving and we grow with it through each new experience.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Farm Fresh Escargot

Living on a farm does have it's advantages and adventures when it comes to growing your own food. I have always enjoyed escargot but never thought of farming my own till watching Gordon Ramsay harvesting garden snails from his garden, purging them then cooking with them. That set off a bell in my head and I have often wondered whether the snails in my garden were edible too.

That thought stayed with me for a long while since life on a farm is always a full time job and that always comes first as that is our livelihood. When I can dabble in what I enjoy like cooking and baking I like to create and make stuff from scratch. I find it very fulfilling and fun.

I did some research recently and found that escargots were really garden snails and the one in my garden was one of the species that was edible. I also researched on farming them and it seems there is a real demand and there are some farmers that farm and breed them. The demand surpasses the supply at this point which made it an enterprise worth looking into but before anything can be achieved I needed to learn the process and understand what needs to be done. Our farm is certified organic and biodynamic which makes it a save environment for the snails to feed on as no nasty chemicals are used. I have identified two places that they seem to be thriving and that is in my herb and veggie garden. I harvested a few to experiment with and the rest I'll keep monitoring in the garden.

Here is a picture of my experiment.

My Experiment With Garden Snails

Am  hoping to fatten them up before the next step. Will keep you posted as it progresses.