Would You Like to Swing on a…Bean?

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I went out to pick beans this afternoon and when I parted the leaves to begin my search, I found this fine fellow, a spring peeper. I hope he sticks around, though he now has about 12 pounds fewer beans to swing from. Yup. Twelve pounds. Possibly more. I need to buy a chest freezer. What shall I do with all of these beans? Recipes please.

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Oats!

Here at Little House on Windy Ridge we are trying our hand at oats this year. They looked beautiful til recently when wind and rain knocked many of them flat just as they started to ripen.

Amber waves of grain.

Amber waves of grain.

I decided (after googling) it was time to reap what we had sowed. But how? First I clipped off a likely looking bunch and spread them to dry in our hot loft. Then tonight I looked at a Youtube video and discovered how to thresh without a thresher. Simply stuff the oats in an old pillowcase and beat the hell out of them with a shoe. Human powered threshing. Who knew? Highly recommend this for stress relief without any undue consequences.

After Threshing

Once threshed, let the winnowing commence. This involves pouring the oats from one bucket to another in a brisk wind. In theory the chaff floats off and you’re left with a bucket of golden grain. In practice, only some of it floated away after repeated pourings. I will try again tomorrow with a fan to see if I can increase the briskness of the breeze. Now, at least, I know the literal meaning of separating the wheat from the chaff (or oats as the case may be).

And that, my friends, is how we laid by our grain for the wintah. At least one bowlful of it anyway. More pix when I finish winnowing. Promise.