Thursday, December 24, 2009


A few things going-on on the farm... The chickens have settled into their winter schedule; we're getting 1 or 2 eggs per day ( instead of 7-9), they have learned that they can go inside when it rains and then they don't get wet!

I have been shopping for a motor for my oil press... It's not cheap as it actually takes quite a lot of force to crank the thing. I have learned a lot about electric motors and how can be used.

Why do I want a motor... well my arm is tired!... We sold 10 bottles of oil this week and we have a local store that wants to start selling it in the new year. I have been trying to build up enough inventory that they can have a decent number on their shelves but we are selling it as fast as I can make it. The current innovation is that the press is now setup where I can see the TV so Rebecca and I can watch together in the evening while I press oil.

We had a big Christmas dinner last night; turkey, stuffing, brussel sprouts and potatoes... The potatoes and the celery in the stuffing came from the yard 

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Slow Squeeze

It's been quiet on the blog but not on the farm... We made another 50 pints of Jelly from grapes that Peter brought us. The grapes were really on their last legs and about to start rotting. We had to throw a lot away but managed to salvage enough. The Jelly tastes... great... same as the last batch.

Meanwhile I am slowly churning out sunflower oil. The black seeds give me much greater yield per pound (hence they are called 'Black Oil Seeds') but it is much harder work to run them through the press. As a compromise I have been running a 50/50 mix of black and shelled. I'm going on Friday to look at motors; if I can get some mechanical assistance it will make the whole thing a lot easier.

The other change I am making is that I'm going to make a 'semi-permanent' setup down in the downstairs kitchen. For the last few years that room has been known as 'The Shop" but now it's going to revert to kitchen. I will have the press set up, seed storage, a filter/settling station, a bottling area and a storage area. This will save me a lot of time as currently every oil pressing session has 30 minutes of setup and 30 minutes of tear-down (not counting the cleaning that I will still have to do). This will also give us our upstairs kitchen space back.