Saturday, 16 November 2013

Chickpea Pate

This is a delicious Pate, I eat it with anything, as a side dish or on a biscuit or a slice of toast, I love it. 

A little bit of info!
Chickpea is part of the legume family, its one of the earliest cultivated legumes that is high in protein. they found a 7500 year old remains in the Middle East.

Chickpeas are low in fat and most of this is polyunsaturated. Its a source of zinc, folate and protein. If you  make 100 Grams of mature, boiled Chickpea it will contain 164 calories, 2.6gr of fat (of which only 0.27gr is saturated), 7.6gr of dietary fibre and 8.9gr of protein.

And ..... Recent studies have also shown that they can assist in the lowering of cholesterol in the bloodstream.

You can grow chickpeas very easily, I just put some seeds in the ground in a sunny patch and in 12 days I had little Chickpeas poking their heads out the ground. We have pretty hot weather so I watered a little more regularly in well drained, fertile soil. In 90 - 100 days you will have 1 inch long pods, each with 2 beans inside. Harvest once the pods have dried on plant.

Ok, so back to my delicous Chickpea pate recipe.

You'll need:

~ 250gr Chickpea
~ 2 Tbsp Coriander
~ 3 Chillies
~ 2 Garlic Cloves
~ Salt to taste
~ 1 Tbsp Lemon Juice
~ 3Tbsp Olive Oil


~ Boil Chickpeas in water until soft, add some salt.
~ Drain over night or from morning to afternoon. Make sure most of the liquid is out.

~ In a blender put Coriander, Chillies, Garlic, Lemon Juice and salt. Mix well.

~ Add the Chickpea and Zap it (mix)

~ Pour in Olive Oil and mix until creamy consistency.

~ Add more salt or lemon juice to your taste.
~ One last Zap it.

Delicious with fresh bread or toast, side dish, biscuit or as a dip.
Absolutely scrumptious!


The Chickpeas can be subsidized with Red or Yellow Split Peas.

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Tyre Horse Bucket

I'm not sure about you, but I am always having a problem with my feed buckets. Max, one of my horses, loves to play with his bucket, he will pick it up and throw them around, step in them and hoof them. So, after going through loads of different shape and size buckets, I had put his feed bucket in a tyre during feed times to stop him from kicking the buckets, but still that did not work. I needed some tough as wheels, flexible and heavy duty bucket. What better than the actual tyre he was kicking!

All you need:

  • A tyre
  • Rubber mat
  • 4 x Washers 
  • 4 x Lock nut
  • 4 x Bolts


Stanley knife or sharp knife
Screw driver
Drilling machine
A strong handyman

~ Cut the rim off the tyre with a sharp knife or Stanley knife. It's quite tough so put your back into it or call for help!

~ Now ask your help or you, to twist the tyre inside out.

~ So that it looks like this:

~ Measure the inside of the tyre and cut the circle length out of the rubber mat.
~ Drill four holes on the ends of the rubber mat for the screws.
~ Then place rubber mat in the tyre and drill through the holes into the tyre.
~ Place screw in and put washer then lock nut.
~ Tighten tight.

And Waa-laaa!!!

I've had these buckets longer than I've had any others and they still in good condition. I would love to hear what you use for your horse feed buckets.

Saturday, 26 October 2013

Squishy Goo In A Bag

Squishy goo is awesome for those parents who don't like mess. This is a perfect activity for toddlers to feel a different texture and to squish, squeeze, smash and poke to their hearts content. Best of all, we (the folks) don't have to worry about squishy slimy goo going into our beautiful carpet or into the corners of our couch. It's also very effective for toddlers who don't like to touch slimy gooey stuff or getting their hands dirty.

All you need is:
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 cups cold water
  • Food colouring
  • Ziplock bag sandwich size or bigger
  • Duct tape

  • Small-ish Pot
  • Spoon 
  • Mixing bowls for different colours


~ Mix cornstarch, Sugar and cold sugar in a small size pot and stir.

~ Stir some more
~ Once the mixture begins to thicken, remove the pot off the heat, still stirring. It should thicken into a pudding consistence, and start looking a little transparent with a blue tinge (Vaseline looking).

~ Leave to cool
~ Once cool, you can add one colour or divide and mix into a few colours, I did yellow and red and mixed them in well.

~  Place in zip lock bags. Put duct tape on the top for extra safety measures.

~ Give to toddler to explore. You can also hang it on a low window so the light shines through.

Monday, 21 October 2013

Advantages Of Fodder

I always like to know if I'm on the right track when it comes to feeding my animals, I'm always researching new ideas for feeds and ways to be able to grow and harvest my own.

I grow Barley Sprouts/fodder, but you can grow oats or wheat-grass. Barley is the more popular for feeding livestock.

The advantageous of feeding Fodder to animals is amazing. Its becoming more and more popular now. Its really not too time consuming either, but once you got your watering on a timer, it will really be a little you will need to do.

Some Advantages to Feeding Fodder to Horses:

  •  Properties known to reduce the incidence of ulcers, inflammatory laminitis, tie-up, compaction & colic
  • Reduce recovery time after hard work
  • Exceptional growth rates in yearlings
  • Stimulates appetite, especially during conditions of heat stress
  • Fed daily, maintains a horse’s well being by aiding the digestive process and supplying protein and high levels of cool energy. This allows a horse in work to maintain the bulk essential for an extended campaign
  • Improvement in general appearance and coat condition
  • High in digestible fiber, which is digested into volatile fatty acids & is readily absorbed into the bloodstream as a source of energy
  • Sprouts contain higher concentrations of the freely availably minerals important for animal nutrition, compared to grain prior to sprouting
  • Helps replace essential fluids lost in work and increases hydration, especially in regions where heat causes excessive loss of fluids from sweating
  • Provide essential amino acids and vitamins which encourages early breeding (D Cuddeford. PhD Royal School of Veterinary Studies)
  • Improved behaviour
  • Higher milk production in lactating mares
  • Improvements in hydration levels

Some Advantages to Feeding Fodder to Pigs:
  • Improvements in coat condition
  • Improved weight gain
  • Improved muscle condition
  • Improved lactation rates
  • Improvements in milk quality
  • Improved fertility rates
  • Reduction in cull rates
  • Reduced mortality rates
  • Improved hoof quality and strength
  • Improved gut function
  • Improved behaviour and temperament
  • High quality meat and better texture

Some Advantages to Feeding Fodder to Chickens:
  • Better quality eggs with deeper yolk colour
  • Enhanced egg taste
  • Reduced sticky droppings
  • Higher quality meat with better texture
  • Improved health and energy levels
  • They just love it, especially if they are kept in.


Thursday, 17 October 2013

The Start Of The Sprouts

I decided to started doing barley fodder for my animals, so that I could minimize on my feed cost, also as a top up, fresh and natural winter feed and the fact that its such a quick turn over process, from start to end it takes 8 days, is brilliant.
Especially for those who battle with grazing in the winter and have to bring in hay. This system can be a low cost and a dependable source of feed that is a nutritional supplementation for all grazing animals. You can supply a great source of nutrition to a wide range of animals (horses, pigs, chickens, goats, sheep, cows, rabbits, Alpaca)

This is my adventure and experiences on growing my own fodder.

How I make my sprouts:

First of all I soak the barley seeds in water and a tablespoon of Jik (helps prevent bacteria and mould growing) overnight.

I then transfer them into a tray which has holes along the one side.

I then put them in my homemade "sprouter". My homemade sprouter is basically two planks, one bigger than the other, to give a down hill water run, (see below pic) then the next shelf will be the same, but the smaller plank under the first shelf's fat plank and the fat plank under the first shelf's thin plank. To give a zigzag motion as the water runs down. I pour water on the top shelf and watch the water zigzag all the way down to the gutter under my contraption which leads to a bucket. That waters my vegetable garden.

I water them no less than 3 times a day, (I plan on putting a irrigation system in with a timer at a later stage)
In 7-9 days you will have sprouted barley ready for feeding.

Your root should be white and smell pleasant,  there should be no fluffy white stuff, maggots, blue-green marks or black fungi on the barley. If so do not feed it to your animals. 
The green grass should be healthy looking and you should get a good mat of white roots.

The below picture shows the growth of the barley by day. 
It's actually 8 days if you include the over night soak.

You should get 500gr of dry barley seeds to 5kg of barley sprouts. Give or take!

I feed my animals a half and half mixture of grain and barley fodder. Just as a supplement and a substitute.
It took one to two feeds for my horses to think that the barley fodder was delicious. They would always eat it last, now I see them grabbing chunks of barley as I give them their feed.
My pigs thought it was Christmas, there was no persuading them. They just climbed in.
The chickens love it, they come running from the other side of their run to come scratch and peck at the delicious green mat.

I have started to grow a little patch of barley in my vegetable garden, in hope to harvest the seeds and to sprout them for my livestock. If its a success then I will plant more barley at a larger scale.
 Growing your own Barley fodder uses less water than growing your own good quality hay

Natural Feed = Natural Digestion

Green leaves = live enzymes - All grazing animals rely on bacteria and enzymes in the gut to aid digestion. The horse for example is designed to extract up to 30% of its nutrition from the ceacum (hind gut), and with dead feeds they aren’t getting the beneficial enzymes and microbes that fresh fodder can provide. Feeding fresh green fodder will mean your horse will get the maximum from it’s feed, and none of it is wasted.
Amino Acid proteins - The sprouting grain converts its existing protein into Amino Acid proteins in the green leaves. These are the best form of protein as they are building blocks for larger proteins. They are used for building muscle tissue, and provide your horse with slow release energy. These are the factors that improve condition, work rates and recovery rates.
Essential fatty acids - Barley fodder is packed with essential fatty acids omega 3 and omega 6. Studies have shown that a good supply of these compounds helps relieve arthritis, asthma, eczema, inflammation after exercise and ulcerative colitis, whilst also improving recovery rates, immune system, hormone balance, bone density and efficiency of oxygen transfer from red blood cells to tissues.
Hydration - When taken from the system the feed is wet and the biscuit itself contains up to 80% moisture. Amongst other things this provides excellent hydration, which helps to flush toxins from the system improving recovery rates and blood flow.
Sprouts can have an alkalising effect on the body and help to neutralise acidic waste, helping to develop a stronger immune system and quicker healing. Horses assimilate and use nutrition and oxygen more effectively when their rumen and cells have an alkaline balance.
Chlorophyll is excellent for blood cleansing and renewal, as well as helping to detoxify the body. It has a regenerative effect on the lungs, glands, vascular system and lymphatic system.
Fresh fodder biscuits provide a simulated grazing process for your horse, which is much more suited to their digestive system than several bulk feeds of concentrated nutrition per day.

Vitamin and Mineral benefits

Vitamin A
~ Excellent for disease resistance
~ Skin & coat condition
~ Nervous system function

Vitamin E
~ Immune system competence & disease resistance
~ Heart, skeletal & respiratory muscle function
~ Oxygen utilisation
~ Possible role with Selenium preventing muscle tie-up syndrome
~ Nervous system function
Vitamin C
~ Possible link to blood capillary strength and fragility

Recommended Feeding Guideline:

• Horse: 2-3 percent of their body weight in fodder; 1.5% body weight in dry hay

• Beef Cow: 2-3 percent of their body weight in fodder; barley straw ration

• Dairy Cow: 3-5 percent of their body weight in fodder; barley straw ration

• Sheep: 2-3 percent of their body weight in fodder; hay ration

• Goat: 2-3 percent of their body weight in fodder; mineral and hay rations

• Dairy Goat: 3-5 percent of their body weight in fodder; mineral and hay rations

• Alpaca: 2-3 percent of their body weight in fodder; hay ration

• Pig: 2-3 percent of their body weight in fodder

• Rabbit: 3-5 percent of their body weight in fodder; hay ration for roughage

• Chicken: 2-3 percent of their body weight in fodder; grit and calcium supplements

Please watch your animals weight and health when changing their diet.


This post links to:

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Edible Painting

Yoghurt painting is a excellent way for your toddler to experiment with slimy, wet texture that's edible. It's also a quick to do activity for your kids, with great rewards and benefits.

All you need is:

~ Plain or vanilla yoghurt
~ Food colouring of your choice
~ Sticky tape
~ White paper


All you do is sticky tape a pattern on your paper, I did the letter of my kids name, and hanged it in their room.
Put a few tablespoons of yogurt in a cup and mix in your food colouring to your desired colour.
Put the paper in front of your toddler, and let them play.
Once they finished, hang the picture up to dry.
Once dry, carefully remove the sticky tape.
Place in a frame.

In the beginning I had to show my toddlers what it was, but nice they got the picture there was nooooo stopping them,
This is a lovely activity that's easy to clean up afterwards.

Such good fun!

This post links to:
My Personal Accent

Home-made play dough

This is always a winner. I mean what kid doesn't like play dough and it's super super easy to make.
No cooking is needed, just hot water. You could even get your kids involved in making them.

All you need is:

~ 1 cup of plain flour
~ 2 teaspoons Cream of Tarter
~ 1/3 cup of Salt
~ 1 cup of hot water
~ 1 Tablespoon of Vegetable Oil
~ 10 or 20 few drops
~ Food colouring as much as desired


In a large-ish heat resistant bowl, add all your dry ingredients, flour, cream of tarter and salt.
Stir in the water and vegetable oil. Mix it up well.
Add your sprinkling of essential oil. At this stage you can break your play dough up into sections for different colours, as I did in the picture below.
Add your food colouring, I added red, yellow, green and blue.
Mix your colours in well, if you want you could add some edible glitter for a bit of fun. 
Leave to cool.
Once cooled, keep in zip Lock bags. It can be used over and over and over again. It really does last.

Give your kids the play dough with simple things you have in your kitchen, such as plastic spoons, knives and forks, and plastic biscuit cutters, rolling pin, you can use anything you find. Sit back and enjoy the creative side of your child as they make all sorts of weird and wonderful creatures.

Play dough can also make a very nice gift. I just pop them into little sandwich bags and squeeze them into a jar, you can even paint the lids and add stickers for a extra flare. 

Always a hit!! And such good fun.

For Fantastic Free Play Dough Mats go to: Mothers Niche

This Post Links to:
My Personal Accent
Blissful and Domestic
My Turn For Us

Saturday, 14 September 2013

Train Egg Carton

We got an old egg carton and decided to make a train. FUN!!
This is a fun indoor activity for all ages. It's really good for their fine motor skills (threading). 

All you need is:

  • 1 x 6 pack egg carton
  • 2 x pipe cleaners
  • Scissor

Cut the the egg carton into sections as seen above,
With the scissors poke a hole on both sides of the "egg cup" 

Thread the pipe cleaner through as seen above
and repeat until they are all thread together as seen below.

Pull tight and waa-laaa you have a train or a caterpillar!

This Post Links to:
With A Blast
Recreate and Decorate
The Velvet Moon Baker

Tuesday, 10 September 2013


Pork Eisbein 
(Serves 4)

This is one of my favourite meals. It takes a while to cook but really easy to make and once all served up, looks and taste pretty impressive.

Eisbein is a Pork knuckle that's covered in a thick layer of fat, it's a very tender meat with a aromatic flavour. Originally a German dish served with sauerkraut. You can also serve it with beetroot and mash potatoe, or/and salad.


  • 4  cured and smoked shank
  • 2  onion, cut into quarters
  • 2  Carrot, chopped 
  • 1  Bay leaf
  • Water

1.  Add all the ingredients into a large saucepan and cover with water.
2.  Bring saucepan to the boil.
3.  Reduce heat, simmer for 1,5hours, or until meat is tender.
4.  Once dry remove shanks from saucepan and pat dry.

5.  Score the skin diagonally across and add salt.

6.  Put the shanks in a hot fire flame or under a hot grill to get a nice crisp crackling.

Plate up and enjoy!

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Look whose arrived!

Maggie had her piglets ~ Middle of August

What an amazing morning! We got up and started the feeding frenzy, which involves, feeding kids, dogs, chickens, pigs and horses, last but not least water and meander in veggie garden.
Every evening I've been checking Maggie (pig) for milk, every evening except last night, when we were a bit distracted with fishing at the dam! 

So I went down to the pigs with their delicious breakfast of pigs pellets and what ever yummy treat I find in the house. I always get such a welcoming response from the pigs when I come down they snort and grunt.
I put their food down and they both proceeded to gollop it down, I poked my head into their hut, as usual, and all snuggled up under some hay, were 4 tiny piglets! 4 adorable males. I quickly called my kids and hubby, who were just as eager to see them!

My kids were so excited and couldn't wait to come and touch them. I was very impressed at, how Maggie didn't mind us close by to her babies.
My Hubby gave Maggie a once over check and she seemed fine, she handled her first litter very well.

And then there-where-4-little-piglets. Well done Maggie!

Sleeping time. I mean come on, How cute is that? 

Concerned Maggie watching over her sleeping babies.

Four musketeers! 

Such a good mummy!

Wilbur has been keeping his distance! Sleeping outside the hut and not inside with Maggie, where he usually slept.
I've watched him go inside and give them a sniff around and then walk out, so I will watch him and see how he adapts, before just kicking him out! So far so good! ;)