Carol’s Kitchen

I’m almost ashamed to admit this, but my husband and I are big ‘foodies’. When we were first married, we went the ‘back to nature’ route. We raised all our own meat and had a huge garden. I have a lot of wonderful memories from those years.

I attempted to make homemade cheese (put too much weight on it and ended up with the hardest brick of cheese you ever saw.) Had to grate it to use it but I enjoyed the experience.

When we moved from the 1 3/4 acres we were renting to buying five acres, I added more skills to my list. We lost our big garden because I found out you can’t garden in a pond or in timber but I purchased a big, ten tray dehydrator and learned how to make jerky, fruit leather, and dry vegetables and fruits. (I learned real fast that drying onions isn’t a pleasant experience and really, why would you need to? But I had to try it once.)

I found out how to make homemade butter. I enjoyed that experience but finding a farmer who would let me have raw milk was next to impossible and my husband wouldn’t let me buy a cow. I suspect he knew who would end up doing the milking. He nixed the goat for the same reason and don’t even ask me what he said when I asked him about bees.

From the five acres, we moved to a small town (pop.400). We had a nice big, garden (full of snakes that I was forbidden to kill. I didn’t touch a single one, but I put a bounty on them, and paid the boy who mowed our grass extra if he could take some out. Snakiest ground I ever walked on.)

My husband decided to make his own beer. I found the experience interesting but I still can’t figure out how I, a complete tea-totaler, ended up on dish-washing duty. Do you know how hard it is to clean narrow necked bottles? Needless to say, I discouraged the beer making with every ounce of my being.

In that house, I also learned how bad rotten sauerkraut smells, and in the near future I’ll write my experience about some other rotting food. But not right now, it was a humiliating (but funny) experience and I’m trying to maintain focus on my topic.

From the small town, we finally purchased my dream property. Ten and a half acres. The bad news was the land was clay. Non-perking, hard a rock clay, so gardening on it wasn’t a good experience. But, our foodie impulse blossomed.

I got my husband a smoker for Christmas one year. And he learned how to cure and smoke his own bacon. I am so spoiled, it’s unbelievable. He made homemade sausage. I won’t buy store bought any more. When my older son insisted we buy a BUD (big ugly dish) my husband and I discovered cooking shows. From there we progressed to the Food Network and that’s all it took.

Watching those chefs on TV has given both my husband and me the false confidence that we, too, can make anything we choose to make.

Under this heading, CAROLS Kithcen, I will be placing articles on our cooking adventures. Our spectacular successes and our monumental failures. I will be giving reviews on cookbooks and recipes and sharing our ‘foodie’ experiences. Please be advised that I seem to be unable to write about food without humor. And I seem to have a compulsion to admit our biggest, baddest mistakes. I’ve been told I have a talent for describing food. Only time will tell. Check back often and see what happens in, Carol’s Kitchen.

11 Responses to Carol’s Kitchen

  1. I’m really excited about this. Have you ever canned or preserved? I’ve always had an interest in that kind of stuff. Some day, my husband and I dream of owning a lot of land where we can raise beef cattle and chickens. I’m a fan of gardening, but with the little ones, it’s hard to spend a lot of time on it.

    Keep me posted. I can’t wait!

    • C. L. Roth says:

      I’ve done it all. My husband got up this morning and canned peppers. The house smells wonderful. The first five years of my married life we raised chickens, ducks, geese, rabbits, calves, pigs, and probably critters that I’ve forgotten about. we’re really silly about food at our house. We eat way better than we should. It’s not unusual to sit down to some amazing food and realize that we’ve spent hours of time, and energy, and money just for us. But it’s such a kick to do.

  2. Wendy S Hoyle says:

    I cannot wait…I really do love to read anything yu write carol and this will be an adventure……(((HUGS))) <3wsh

  3. Penny says:

    I LOVE IT! I love hearing about your food adventures and how you can make anything you make sound delicious OR if not so dang funny! Nice addition!

    • C. L. Roth says:

      It’s thanks to you that I’ve added it. How can I not put my food adventures online when I’ve got such an energetic rooting section. So thank you, Penny, for the suggestion. I’m looking forward to posting under the food page.

  4. Sharon says:

    I think I found out where to post a reply to you. I love your food. Do you rem remember when you called me because there was a big snake in your kitchen. hen? We talked about an hour while you made sure that the snake didn’t get out of your kitchen into the other part of the house. I have such fond memories of that day. Also the shrieks when the snake moved and you swung the broom at it. I don’t think I ever heard the ending to that story. Did Hank remove it when he came home?

    • C. L. Roth says:

      Sharon, I do remember that day. I was horrified. Hank got rid of it for me. He had to because I was threatening to load the gun and start blasting at it. I have a lot of wonderful food memories. And some not so wonderful but still memorable.

  5. Shirley Guldenschuh says:

    I was caught up in the back to nature movement, too. I never slaughtered anything more sentient than a pumpkin, but I milked goats and made cheese. And gardened. And canned, and dehydrated. One awful year, I tried to grow my own lentils.

    I’ve felt like I was drowning in mushed tomatoes, and spent afternoons sneaking around the Walmart parking lot putting bags full of surplus zucchini in the beds of pickup trucks. It’s amazing, how my attitude toward food has changed since those days.

    I’m looking forward to your recipes, complete with piquant comments.

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