Moving chicks outside
We live in the northeast (New York) current temps 27-38 highs and 8-30 lows. We hatched 5 chicks November 7th, 2012. They are currently housed in our warm basement (72 degrees). We would like to put them outside in chicken coop. Will they be ok with the colder weather?
New Lebanon, New York
It’s kind of hard on winter hatched chicks to go from the warm house to the cold coop. But they’re feathered out by now and what I’d suggest is to put a heat lamp in the chicken coop where the chicks can get under it if need be. That should work. Be sure to wire it firmly so it can’t get knocked down and cause a fire. You might put a piece of plywood across a corner with an opening of just a few inches under it to make a temporary “room” so only the chicks could duck under and warm up but the bigger chickens couldn’t get in. After a few weeks, they’ll be fine without the lamp. — Jackie
Yesterday, my husband and I were processing a deer. He was complaining about our manual meat grinder and I was telling him about your recent blog post using your neighbor’s electric grinder. He said for me to start looking for one as he doesn’t want to keep cranking that old one. I read where Will bought you one for Christmas and wondered which model you all decided on. I was looking at the Waring Pro’s but was just curious if you decided to get one of those and if you went with the 100 or 105 if you did.
Mountain City, Tennessee
Will, my adorable husband, did buy me a meat grinder for Christmas. I loved the Waring Pro, but he found another similar brand on sale at Menard’s, a Weston, which also comes with a sausage stuffing tube. (I think that was a hint!) The price of the two was identical. Let me tell you, I’ve used a hand grinder for years and for a quick easy job, the electric ones are wonderful. Of course I’ll never get rid of my manual grinders but for now, the electric one stays in the kitchen! — Jackie
Condensation in canned pecans
I’m having condensation problems when I pressure canned my first batch of pecans today. They are about 3 weeks off the tree. We successfully canned the almonds and the walnuts, but the first batch of pecans had a lot of moisture in the jars. I’m wondering if I need to let them dry in the shell a bit longer?
I would let them dry several weeks in the shell, then make sure you toast them for half an hour on low heat, stirring often to prevent them from scorching. Well-toasted, they have nearly no moisture. This is one reason for the toasting. — Jackie