045 Never-ending catch-up days

045 Never-ending catch-up days

Catch-up days often turn into catch-up weekends. My car broke down three weeks ago. School took up a lot of time. Things didn’t get done. So, I set out to finally make some progress. A million thing at a time, of course.

Today is one of those catch-up/prep days.

I’m going to do some ingredient prepping, also deal with a more elaborate dinner than usual, and do a lot of catching up on tasks.

I don’t clean my air fryer enough. So, when I do, it’s always a major hassle. We don’t have an oven, so we use the air fryer all the time. It shows.

It always feels like cleaning it takes forever. It took exactly as long as frying some eggs for breakfast. Well, okay, as long as trying to fry some eggs. It wasn’t my day.

As melting bee’s wax takes a while, I like to make candles on catch-up days. The unburnt wax can melt in the water while I deal with this dead bird.

This duck lived two gardens over from mine her entire life. My neighbor couldn’t get her sold because she was “too small.”

I washed my hands a million times throughout, because I kept getting interrupted. The downside of catch-up days.

I’d taken apart a single chicken before, so I was figuring it out as I went. I’d watched some videos, mostly on chicken, but luckily the birds are similar.

Out of respect for the life taken, I make sure to use as many parts of the animal as possible. The wings will go into the stock pot or to the dog next time. Not worth the hassle.

As I had done a messy job breaking this apart, I had to do a lot of clean-up now. But it’s all good. My knives still aren’t as sharp as I’d like them to be, and learning sharpening hasn’t been successful yet.

I am much faster at learning how to make candles. Though, they, too, are still imperfect. I just melt the left-over wax into the next candle.

Right, broth takes time. I added some whey and let it all simmer while I continued.

It’s getting late (sorry for the ugly light), so it’s time to make dinner. Seasoning: paprika, garlic, onion, chili, salt.

Whenever the wax was melted, I poured candles.

I knew ducks had been eaten in Germany for a while but all the recipes online were for Asian cuisine. I decided to improvise with apples, onions, and the skin fat of the duck. Sweet and sour but with local ingredients. And it actually worked. The meat was done, so I transferred my mixture to a baking dish instead.

I wasn’t up for standing any longer, so I decided to change tactics mid-cooking. My husband kept an eye on the wax while he worked, and I rested up while dinner cooked without me. The last candle was poured just before dinner.

I left behind the bits and fat to deal with the next day, and heaped on delicious apple-onion mixture.

I also ignored the broth until the next morning. It just chilled in the fridge over night. The boneless pieces went to Pepper. He loves broth day. I poured the broth into a bottle for future meals.

I’ve been experimenting a lot with bread recipes. I had a really weak starter for a while but didn’ t know. I kept blaming my technique, so I tried a lot of different ones. This is a one-bowl bread. I have a feeling this will be my go-to in the future. So much simpler.

I still had the two breasts of the duck, so I set out to figure out another dinner with the bird.

You all have been giving me advice for not crying over onion. I know the tricks. They just don’t help much with these onions. Even if I don’t trim the top until the last moment, even when I put the onions far away, I still cry.

Every thirty minutes or so, I deal with the dough. Stretch and fold, stretch and fold.

We get a crate of local produce every week, and there was some miscommunication, so I ended up with potatoes. I usually only get potatoes once every month or so to can them. I really don’t like working with raw potatoes.

The bread dough was coming together. So, I cleaned up after myself.

Later that day, I used the duck fat to fry the potatoes. While that cooked, I cleaned up some pumpkin seeds.

With some of the duck broth, dinner was turning into something. Some molten butter and some breadcrumbs made a great topping.

I still made bread and muffins later that night. It was a long weekend.

So long, and thanks for being here.