November 25, 2009

Ma Ingalls I am not.

We've butchered things at home in the past. Mainly small things, like chickens & rabbits, but we have done a couple of hogs & a few deer before. When we've butchered hogs, we've roasted half of them & packaged the other half...and I think they were only half grown. This time we butchered a full sized hog & packaged everything but the hams that we took to have cured.

I picked up a Rival Food Saver a few weeks back & discovered that I love it. It was so much easier than wrapping everything in butcher paper & masking tape & I'm pretty sure the meat will last longer.

But it was nothing like when they butchered in the Little House books. We didn't blow up the pig bladder for the kids to bat around like a balloon. We didn't render gallons of lard. We didn't boil & scrape the hog to save the skin for cracklings. No head cheese will be made, no smoking or salt curing is happening at home, and the sausage is being considered, but will happen at a much later date.

How those women managed to keep house, raise children, feed their families, do laundry, sew all their clothing by hand, and do all the other things that had to be done (like butchering, butter churning, sugaring, gardening, etc.) is beyond me. I wonder if the days weren't a bit longer 150 years ago....maybe they had 28 hours in a day.

1 comment:

Kork said...

No, they had children that had no choice but to participate in the work! :D

I'm just admiring the fact that you guys actually do any butchering of your own. I know it's a major undertaking, but I think of the fact that putting in a really full day just saved you guys HUNDREDS of dollars in grocery bills, and you KNOW WHAT YOU'RE EATING!!!