Harvest 2009, days 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 & 17

So, the last post ended on Friday with day 11.

Saturday and Sunday we didn’t do any cutting either. Everyone was getting very anxious — and crabby too.

Finally we were able to start late Monday morning. The rain had made a lot of the wheat lay down in the fields. But the combines seemed to do a good job picking it up. With six combines total — our one plus the custom cutters’ five — it was a busy time at the bins. The trucks were getting loaded in the field faster than they could be unloaded at the bins, so usually almost all the trucks were lined up waiting to be dumped, with maybe  one or two trucks out in the field getting filled up by the combines.

That made for a hectic day for the people helping unload the trucks. And it also made for a hectic day for the person keeping the log book of what bins held wheat from what fields and which bins to move to next and which truck was the end of a field and how full a bin was when a field ended.

With the full custom cutting crew and our guys, I probably fed 12-14 people Monday night. The menu was:

  • Iced Tea & Lemonade
  • Bread&Butter sandwiches
  • Green salad
  • Pork Noodles (recipe in separate post, to follow this one)
  • Some thickened broth from the pork roasts, for those who wanted something to put on the noodles beside Worcestershire or soy sauce
  • Banana Bread Cake for dessert (recipe follows)

And everyone ate a lot of pork noodles. Those two huge pork roasts I had cooked about five days before? 90% of those were still left Monday, so Mom and I cut them all up and put them in the pork noodles. It probably wound up being about 5 or 6 cups of cubed pork. And a quart of cooked onions and celery. And probably at least two quarts of cooked spaghetti. Stir all that up, and it was a lot of food.

Still, by the time Monday night was over there was maybe about three cups of pork noodles left. Mom said three or four times she couldn’t believe they at that much. But they did.

Two or three of the custom cutters asked what Worcestershire sauce was, saying they had never heard of it. Which is amazing to me. I mentioned that to Mom and Dad and they were also puzzled. Dad quipped “see, you didn’t have a deprived childhood after all” and I replied that while I had never considered my childhood to have been deprived, I hadn’t realized how worldly it was.

Tuesday was the last day of winterwheat. One of the custom cutters’ combines broke down that day, so the guys at the bins weren’t quite so swamped. Still, a busy day. And everyone was ready for a break.

Tuesday probably 14-16 people ate. The menu was:

  • Iced Tea & Lemonade
  • Bread&Butter sandwiches
  • Coleslaw
  • Sliced cucumbers
  • Applesauce
  • Baked ham
  • Scalloped potatoes
  • Oatmeal cake for dessert

By the time we were done Tuesday, the scalloped potatoes pan had been scraped clean and the ham — well, the ham bone and the few shreds of meat still clinging to it will make a good soup bone.

It’ll probably be about a week or so before the spring wheat is ready. We’ll cut that ourselves. So the crew spent some time working on their equipment, doing maintenance, blowing dust out of combines, etc. on Wednesday. And today has been quiet too. We’re fertilizing fields with anhydrous and working on our own equipment, but no harvesting for a while.

Today (Thursday, the 20th) is also my birthday, and it’s rare that we’re not harvesting on my birthday. So, happy birthday to me, and here’s hoping the springwheat harvest goes well.


Banana Bread Cake

A very good, very simple cake that uses up over-ripe bananas in a really delicious way.

  • 1 c brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 c flour
  • 2 c chopped nuts
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt (optional)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 3-4 mashed ripe bananas, or approx. 1-3/4 cup mashed ripe bananas
  • 1 c chocolate chips (optional)

Cream together sugar and butter. Add the rest of ingredients in the order given. Stir well, pour into baking pan, can be 9″x9″, or 8″x12″, or 9″x13″, depending on how many pieces you want to cut it into. Bake at 350 F for 30-35 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

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