2 quarts (8 cups) of stock or broth made with Old Time Heritage Chicken. I made mine from the leftover bones of a whole chicken I cooked in the crockpot 6-8 hours for a meal the evening before. I put the bones back into the crock pot after dinner, added enough water to cover (approx 8-10 cups), cooked on low overnight and strained the bones out in the morning. You can cook the bones for 24-48 hours in the crockpot on low and add a little apple cider vinegar, if you want. This can also be simmered on the stove on low as well.
2 medium Zucchini cut up (I used yellow & green for color)
1 quart beans snapped in 1-2" pieces (green, yellow and purple)
5 leaves of Kale chopped coarsely (Lacinato Kale for color)
5 leaves of Swiss Chard chopped coarsely
1 onion chopped coarsely
4 medium carrots
4 ears of corn - (fresh or left over) kernels chopped off
1 good handful (1 cup) chopped parsley
1 pint of Okra roughly sliced
6 tomatoes coarsely chopped
1 small head of cabbage coarsely sliced
1 bay leaf (I added it to the bones while they cooked)
Salt to taste (a teaspoon or so would be by guess but I add it after the veggies cook into the soup and add their flavor!).
I cooked mine for 8 hours on low in the crock pot but you can bring to a boil and simmer on the stove until the veggies are tender.
Cooking Tips:Tip 1: My goal is to combine the various colors, textures & flavors so use what is available at your local farmer's market or your freezer.
Tip 2: Add veggies until the broth/stock is full of veggies - they will cook down. There is no hard and fast rule on how much to add. Be creative and enjoy cooking!
Tip 3: I did not add potatoes or noodles of any sort as I will freeze the leftovers for a quick meal at a later date! Potatoes and pasta do not freeze well for me in soup!
Tip 4: You can use Beef, Pork, Turkey or Chicken broth/stock for the base. You will find that the Old Fashioned Heritage Chicken from Old Time Farm has much more flavor that the commercial type store bought chicken!
This is some YUMMY Broccoli Cheese Soup I made with broth from our very own Chantecler chicken along with onions, garlic & broccoli purchased from the local Farmer's Markets we attend and cream-line milk in a glass bottle from the Meadville Market House.
Here is the Recipe for the Cream of Broccoli Soup and the broth/stock instructions are here.
You are not limited to using chicken stock or broth. Make a stock from the leftover cut ends/trimmings of your veggies or even from a ham bone.
Here is my favorite Recipe for Chicken Noodle Soup from Southern Living Cookbook ! And here is a Recipe for Homemade Egg Noodles like my Great Grandma Ruth taught me to make!
Homemade noodles from our farm fresh eggs takes the recipe over the top but, in a pinch, I would suggest using a Kluski type noodle instead of the fine noodle in the Chicken Soup recipe!
Any cut of our Old Time Chicken or Turkey will work for this soup or start with Old Time Bone Broth and add the veggies and noodles.
I LOVE fried round steak and have my whole life! It is one of those simple, old-fashioned, hardy, delicious country comfort foods that makes me feel good all over! Ever hear of country fried steak or chicken fried steak? This is their Kwik-n-EZ Kiss'n cousin. Guess what? I have been bringing this culinary gem to the markets and not making alot of noise about it.
The key is to use Old Time 100% Grass-fed round steak that has been mechanically tenderized (aka cube steak), coat it with flour and fry it in Old Time 100% Grass-fed tallow, butter or your favorite cooking oil until browned. Make some pan gravy to put over baked, fried, boiled or mashed potatoes, rice or quinoa with some beans or corn on the side and dinner is served!
Cut the Old Time 100% Grass-fed tenderized round steak into portion size pieces (about the size of an I-phone 7 in our house). Put 1/4 to 1/2 cup of flour in a baggie or bowl and add the round steak one piece at a time and coat with the flour. I added about 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp garlic powder to the flour (you can add your seasoning of choice). Get your pan nice and hot and add the tallow, butter or oil and then the pieces of steak. When you see the liquid start to pool on the top of the meat and the sides of the meat start to look lighter in color, it is time to flip it. Cook until browned or to the desired temperature on a meat thermometer.
To make a pan gravy from the drippings, add 2 tablespoons of butter or tallow to the pan over medium heat. When the fat is melted, add 2 tablespoons of the left over seasoned flour and cook flour until slightly browned (a few minutes or so). Get ready with a whisk and slowly add about 1 1/2 cups of beef broth, water or milk while whisking. The more you whisk and are consistent in adding your liquid, the least amount of lumps you are likely to get. If the gravy is too thick, you can add a little more liquid, if too thin, let it reduce down by simmering a little bit.
It does not get much better than this for me.
This Kwik-n-EZ one-pot recipe is inspired a Greek-Style Stuffed Pepper recipe shared by my sister-in-law (and master cooker extraordinaire), Andrea, I do not have time to mess with the stuffing, baking & waiting an hour for it to be done as we need to get the meal on the table to move onto the next project on the farm - I am sure your busy family is the same.
Greek Unstuffed Pepper
1 lb Old Time 100% Grass-fed Ground Beef
2 tbsp Old Time 100% Grass-fed Beef Tallow or oil of choice (more if needed when sautéing veggies)
1 small onion chopped
3 bell peppers sliced or rough chopped
1 gallon baggie of spinach - rough chopped (or use chopped kale or swiss chard. I used foraged lambs quarters)
1 medium zucchini - shredded or rough chopped
2 large tomatoes rough chopped or 1 pint of cherry tomatoes cut in half
1 - 14 oz (approx) can stewed or canned tomatoes (I used a jar of Who Cooks for You Farm "tomato soup". You could also use 2 more fresh tomatoes but may need to add some water,)
2 cups of cooked rice (**optional)
1/2 tsp dried oregano (1 1/2 tsp fresh)
1/2 tsp kosher or sea salt or to taste
a sprinkle of black pepper to taste
Feta cheese (I used Goat Rodeo Chickabiddy)
Brown & crumble the ground beef in the tallow (or oil). Add the onion and pepper chunks and cook until almost soft. Add spinach & zucchini cook slightly (if using Kale, cook to soften a bit before adding other ingredients). Add rice (optional) tomatoes, canned tomatoes, oregano, salt & pepper. Bring to a simmer and cover. Simmer for about 15 mins to allow the flavors to meld together.
Serve "as is" and top with a sprinkle of feta cheese or serve over baked or mashed potato or quinoa.
Spring equals eggs are "in season" from our old fashioned poultry. Our hens follow their instincts to reproduce in nature's rhythm! Old Time Farm does not use lights to force our hens to lay eggs out of their natural cycle, so, as the days become longer, the Chanty and Turkey Girlz kick into production without regard to market availability or that consumers are accustomed to 365 access to what was a seasonal "protein" in yesteryear. Add to that our Chantecler and Standard Bronze tendency to go "broody", or want to sit on eggs to hatch vs lay eggs when the weather warms, means even more seasonality to the production.
This seasonal aspect is one of the biggest challenges we face with bringing products from our heritage breeds to market. How do I explain to people that we will not have eggs 365 days a year like farms using chickens selected for maximum production in minimum time on minimum input, and what in the world do I do with all the eggs produced during the peak egg season (February through April) when the Farmers' Markets are not open? We hatch chicks for future generations and ship "hatching eggs" to farmers/homesteaders on certain days of the week and obtained licensure of our kitchen from the state so we can use the extra eggs from other days in finished product at our markets! Eggs can also be shelled, beaten and frozen for use out of season. Before refrigeration, there were many ways used to store eggs for off-season use from storing in sawdust or sand to coating with a fat and storing in a cool location. Thankfully, we have refrigeration today.
I digressed to "talking turkey" so back to Bread Pudding! This week, I brought one of our most beloved recipes to market and I promised to share the recipe and how to make it ... Bread pudding with Rhubarb. When the eggs are plentiful, we make many egg recipes including bread pudding (sweet) and strata (savory) as well as rice pudding. My Great Grandma made bread pudding to use up stale bread and it was always a treat! Adding the rhubarb was a twist I added while experimenting - the sweet and sour play perfectly off each other. I encourage you to look at this as a "base recipe" and experiment with the sweet and savory aspect, using different breads and a variety of fruits, nuts and seasonings.
Bread Pudding with Rhubarb
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 13x9" baking dish (if 13x9 is too much for you, cut the recipe in 1/2 and make a smaller amount or share with a friend or neighbor)
Cut the bread into cubes (no need to be precise) and spread out into baking dish.
Cut the rhubarb and sprinkle evenly in baking dish with bread.
Whisk the eggs, add the sugar, milk and vanilla & whisk some more to mix together.
Pour the egg, milk, sugar, vanilla mix over the bread/rhubarb mix and gently submerge any floating bread to make sure it is completely coated with the egg mixture.
Let stand for about 10 minutes so the bread can absorb the egg mixture then bake at 350 for about 40 minutes or until a knife or pick comes out "clean" when inserted into the center of the pan.
Eat warm with cream, whipped cream or ice cream or cold.
Do not be afraid to experiment with adding fruits like cranberries, blueberries, strawberries, raisins, craisins or changing the exact to almond, orange or anything else that suits your fancy. You can add nutmeg or cinnamon for a different flavor as well. Try making a baked French toast with whole slices of bread or removing the sugar and adding meat and a veggie for a savory option like our Nettle and Turkey Egg Strata.
Let me know what variations you come up with! Our ancestors had many variations of bread pudding and custards as all food in the house was precious and this was a wonderful way to use up the seasonal abundance of eggs and stale bread!
I will try to add a picture soon - I forgot to take a picture and we sold out of the bread pudding at market! Picture posted!!
Old Time Farm