Contributing Monkie V Ol Blak
Published on July 29, 2011
Photographer V Blak
The title of this post is really my own little person fantasy. As of now, I have just baby stepped out of L.A. and I am about to baby step into New York City and I already have one chick, but she isn’t the egg laying type. She is the egg eating type, if you know what I mean. In the near future, I would love love love to take a big step out of NYC / L.A. and land somewhere in the world, where having a bevy of chicks calling my name wouldn’t seem that unusual to the local folk.
For all those chick/canning dreamers out there, I present to you, two books sent to me out of the blue. Keeping Chickens and Canning Preserving with Ashley England. Two very well written and designed books about you guessed it, raising chickens and canning your own food for the urban dweller who thinks about escaping to a simpler life.
The author Ashley turns out to be a recent escapee. She is on her own adventure figuring this modern homesteading type of life out for herself and the books are a way of sharing that adventure. She even has a blog (small measures) and a few videos if your not the reading type. Her series of books which go for $14 each, would make a great gift. I thought the books were really well done. I give them two monkie stubs up…
Canning & Preserving is a wonderful introduction to everything you need to know about making jams, jellies, pickles, chutneys and more. the book includes 20 recipes, all of the basics for getting started, and all sorts of tips and easy-to-follow notes for getting your own home canning system started. the photos inside are colorful and easy to understand- and the section about throwing a home canning party (complete with pictures of ashley and her friends) is so sweet and endearing it’s hard not to immediately want to immediately throw your own.
Keeping Chickens is ashley’s (informative) love letter to keeping your own chickens. i sadly don’t have room to do something like this, but the book felt like an inspiring primer to get started with the process- even if you don’t have space yet. ashley covers all the basics for caring for a happy, healthy flock, including breed selection, purchasing, housing, feeding, and hatching. but my favorite part of the book is a delicious recipe section for making the most of your home farm-fresh eggs. the book really goes into great, but easy-to-understand, detail about the process, so if you’ve ever been curious about keeping your own flock at home, this is the perfect place to start.