Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Today We’re Talking Blackberries and Chickens!

 

Yesterday the boys and I went Blackberry picking.  It was such a gorgeous day! The temperature was lower and a steady breeze helped keep us a bit cooler.  Out prime picking spot was out in one of my dad’s fields that is in CRP (conservation reserve program). In this field tall grasses grow and patches of Blackberries.  At one place we were up on a hill and the view was so beautiful! To make the day even better, the picking was phenomenal! In an hour we picked two large ice cream buckets full! Sadly, next year due to the field being in CRP, all those lovely Blackberry bushes will have to mowed down. But, for this year we are enjoying and mostly likely over indulging on these gorgeous, juicy, jems!

blackberries

 

I happily put 7 quart bags of these beauties in the freezer, we snacked on some, and I saved out just enough for a pie.

 

pie crust

 

A scrumptious, amazing Blackberry Pie!

 

blackberry pie

adapted from Michelle Verdiere’s recipe on Allrecipes

  • 5 1/2 cups fresh blackberries
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons butter sliced
  • 1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust pie
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 Tablespoons milk
  • Extra sugar
  1. Combine 4 cups berries with the sugar and flour. Place bottom pie crust in pie plate and brush with beaten egg. Spoon berry mixture into pan. Spread the remaining 1 1/2 cups of berries on top of the sweetened berries, and cover with the top crust. Seal and crimp the edges. Brush the top crust with milk, and sprinkle with the extra sugar.
  2. Bake at 425 degree F (220 degrees C) for 15 minutes. Reduce the temperature of the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C), and bake for an additional 20 to 25 minutes.

 

When I wasn’t absorbed in Blackberry heaven, I was laughing at these guys!

 

chickens

Oh YES! Chickens have come to our Juniper Hills! 

A guy that is on the fire department with Mr. Hollywood wanted to get rid of these beauties.  His wife had bought them as chicks. She wanted laying hens.  She got roosters.  And we got the best part of the deal…free chickens! 

Meet, Daniel Boone, Mingo, Yadkins, and Jericho.  The boys really like the old Daniel Boone T.V. series and thus our chickens received these macho frontiersmen names!  Little sis was fit to be tied that she didn’t get to name any of the chickens. She thought Blueberry was a much more suitable name!

Now I have always talked myself into not wanting free range chickens because I’m a barefoot kind of girl.  I don’t want any surprises gushing up between my toes, if you know what I mean!  But these lovely creatures have been free range since late spring.  So, free range they must!

I must tell you, I had so much fun with these feathered beauties.  When I wasn’t busy with Blackberries and other household duties, I could be found out in the yard checking on the chickens! 

There were a few mishaps when we first let them out of the cage in the morning.  They got scattered first by the dog, who just walked calmly up to see who the new arrivals were, then by the cat who thought he would try to catch a feast.  I seriously thought one was lost for good in the tall weeds that surround our yard, but they eventually all came back together.  They spent the day scratching around the yard and when the sun got too hot they took to the weeds and trees beyond our yard.

 

chicken-1

We opened up my potting shed (that is still waiting to become a potting shed) to these bachelors, so that they would have a safe haven for the night.  Getting them in to the shed….that’s a long story, but finally we just waited till dark!  They settled down to sleep on our lower deck and then while they were in their night time stupor we easily walked up to them, picked them up and carried them to the shed.

Even though these guys are here only till they are fattened up enough for the table, I am really enjoying watching them! And I’m loving their morning shout outs!  It’s like they are saying, “LOOK, this is such a GLORIOUS morning, don’t you just want to REJOICE!”

And this morning while I was sitting out on the deck watching them, I did just that!  I lifted my voice in praise and thanksgiving to my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!

10 comments:

  1. Yay for chickens! Sounds fun!

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  2. what i would give for a piece of your blackberry pie!
    we used to keep a careful eye out for snakes and
    always saw them when blackberry picking. in fact,
    once my little brother shot a snake by my mom's
    boot.

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  3. I would love to sit a spell with you eating some of that scrumptious looking pie and watching your new little Roo's!
    Just a hint...to gather them all in at night, feed them some table scraps, they love that! and oh, they love cat food too, I soak it down with some water first...now when I come out at dusk with a bowl in my hand they come a runnning!

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  4. I've been doing some canning during these cooler days. Another heat wave is on the way. Jenn, so glad you are blogging a bit more! I always enjoy coming by.

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  5. Jenn~ That pie looks divine!
    I bought Blackberries last night at the store. 3.99 for a teeny, tiny container. They were Organic. And then read your post late last night. I'm so jealous!
    I don't have nearly enough for pie...just enough to make Blackberry Tea.

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  6. We must be having our cooler weather (here) today - because I'm loving it.

    I so enjoyed this post on your blackberries... yum!! Free ones at that. The best.

    And those chickens are beautiful... perhaps a great way to help keep down the bugs/ticks population, too??


    "This is the day that the Lord, hath made- let us rejoice and be glad in it"... great thoughts this morning.

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  7. Oh, don't worry about a little chicken poo between the toes. It washes right off. ;o)

    Those are some BEAUTIFUL roosters! Too bad they are only going to be for dinner. :o( They'd make some beautiful babies with a pretty hen! Do you know what kind they are?

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  8. I'm really wanting to go pick Blackberries. I heart them. Also love the chickens. I had about 10 once upon a time. Would get them again in a heart-beat if I could.
    ~FringeGirl

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  9. Those blackberries!!! Oh my!! So yummy looking. We don't have any place around here to go pick those and I am a bit envious!

    And that pie!! It is flawless and my mouth is watering.

    Those chickens are gorgeous. Someday I hope to enter the chicken world. But I'm a barefoot girl myself, too.

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  10. Aww! Your roosters are quite handsome! Looks like between them and the berries you will have some good eats this winter!

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