Glenn

Blacksmithing gems and pearls

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Well my great grandfather was the smith in a small Arkansas hill town; I don't have anything he used or made.  I know that he was skilled in areas I haven't a clue about; on the other hand I am skilled in areas he would not have know anything about; so it work outs even.  He died with over 900 acres of land so I assume he was a pretty good smith and traded work for land during the great depression.  (My piece is only 13 acres though.)

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"Never harvest more than you can grow." My great grandfather - Farmer

I've always taken it as never use more than you can get out of it. Kind of a "waste not" statement that applies to just about everything.

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My folks were more 20th. cent and said "spend less than you make." Same message though I think. I always wondered about that seeing as my folks always had bank payments for one thing or another.

Here's one from my Maternal Grandmother. "Never push on the wagon, push on the wheel." It's a leverage thing, pushing on the wagon is pushing on the fulcrum where pushing on the wheel is one arm of the lever.

Oh here's another, "To each his own the old lady said as she kissed the cow."

Frosty The Lucky.

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Oh here's another, "To each his own the old lady said as she kissed the cow."

Frosty The Lucky.

You've reminded me of one of my grandfathers favorite stories. (born in 1900)

He watched a lady pull a bucket from a well, and give her horse a drink. Then she apparently poured a bit of the spittle/foam off the top, and took a drink herself.

Grandad said: "Lady, you'd drink that water after the horse has been in it?"

She replied: "I'd rather drink after my horse, than some of the people I know."

 

I have to say, 100+ years later, I agree with her.  ;)

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Sorry if this one has been said before If so I missed it when reading through.

Do NOT catch the hot metal with your bare hands.. it hurts muchly :(

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Sorry if this one has been said before If so I missed it when reading through.

Do NOT catch the hot metal with your bare hands.. it hurts muchly :(

That is does brother, that it does. This is the appropriate ancient blacksmith saying I made up a while back. "Carpe Terminus Frigus."

Frosty The Lucky.

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Yep. If I drop steel during a demo I never try to catch it. "Hot steel has right of way" - onlookers always nod agreement.

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... use what you have to make what you need while you search for what you want...

I figured this belonged here.

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There use to be a LOT of Blacksmiths in every town and they all had relatives!  Maybe the ringing of the anvil or the smell of coal smoke triggers memories so they show up at the demos.   I never miss looking in on a demo mostly to see what they have for equipment and in fact my great grandfather was a blacksmith and we have pictures.     

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Most farms here in the USA had small forges for quick and dirty repairs; but sent their big work to the local professionals.  However by the time it goes down 2-3 generations that forge becomes a professional  shop; (funny that nobody says "My grandmother was a chef; she had a *kitchen*!")

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Well I had someone tell me his gran was a fitter and turner ! " She fitted good food into those pots and turned it into something awful ! "

I suppose not everyone remembers gran's cooking fondly.

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My paternal Grandmother Frost was a professional cook in logging, mill and railroad camps. I've heard tales from other Pac. N.W. families about how she not only ran the kitchen & staff (bull cooks) but logistics and drove the housekeeping staff to near perfection. She was basically the Camp boss.

One thing I definitely inherited from her is a LOVE for onion and garlic. Her biscuits and gravy was legendary. I have NO idea how Dad came to love rolled and cut biscuits with enough baking powder to make your mouth pucker. Grammy Frost's biscuits were light, drop biscuits you'd have to ask to find out what the leavening was. She used baking powder but I never did find out how she made such light biscuits with so little. Her sausage or bacon gravy is legendary too, white with fresh ground pepper, sweated onion and just enough garlic to taste.

Grammy Frost wasn't a blacksmith but she sure as can be made their camp life as good as conditions allowed.

Frosty The Lucky.

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Frosty, already gained 2 pounds just reading Your reply. :P

:rolleyes:

Frosty The Lucky.

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Frosty, you have me cravin biscuits and gravy now. It's only 5pm so I guess it's still early enough for breakfast don't you think?

It's never too late for a good breakfast! It is after all, the most important meal of the day.

^_^

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ThorsHammer82 said:

... use what you have to make what you need while you search for what you want...

 

Wow. never thought something out of my "mouth" would end up here... thanks

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ThorsHammer82 said:

... use what you have to make what you need while you search for what you want...

 

Wow. never thought something out of my "mouth" would end up here... thanks

It was well said and speaks so well of what we do. It should be here, It's a gem for sure.

Frosty The Lucky.

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Exactly, it's NEVER the wrong time for breakfast.

I didn't make us breakfast tonight though. I hit Safeway's salad bar, it's the cheapest easiest place I know of to get the fixins for dishes so I don't have to buy a slab of ham, lb of spinach, etc. I can just pick up what I need ad I don't even have to cut it up. I picked up: little ham cubes, a healthy dolop of spinach, about a tbsp of celery bits and the thing that just caught my eye so it went in the tray thing, pickled artichoke. It's very lightly pickled so the choke flavor comes through nicely with a touch of acid. Very nice.

Let's see, then I picked up a pint of heavy cream and a couple frozen pie crusts. Yeah, I've ever been much good at pie crusts much to my Grandmother's chagrin.

So we had quiche for dinner. I melted a healthy knob of butter in the pan and when it started sizzling a little I added a couple Tbsp worth of liquid smoke mixed and added the ham to soak (maserate?) in the butter and smoke. I fine chopped the spinach some onion and the choke. While I prebaked the pie crusts I put some golden brown and delicious on the ham then turned the heat down and sweated the onion and celery, lastly the spinach to rid it of all the water than can make a quiche Florentine soggy.

8 eggs and the better part of a pint of heavy cream, salt, pepper and a couple Tbsp of rubbed sage well whipped. while the crusts cooled enough not to break the egg when it hit.

I added the chopped choke to the now sweated and browned filling and split the filling between the crusts and dosed liberally with shredded sharp cheddar. Added the custard and folded the filler and custard, covered it all with more cheddar and stuck it in the 375 oven on a half sheet pan.

45 mins and it was golden brown and resting. sure it wasn't proper, I've been told so by a french . . . chef. Florentine or Lorraine, it cant be both it isn't a quiche. Truth was he was ticked off because mine was WAY better than his. Anyway, the lightly pickled choke really set it off without dominating the flavor. I'm thinking it's one of the best quiche I've made yet. I'm going to try this concoction over a camp fire one of these days quiche picks up wood smoke nicely.

Frosty The Lucky.

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ThorsHammer82 said: ... use what you have to make what you need while you search for what you want...

If it makes sense and we can remember it, all the better.  We can pass it on as words of wisdom to others.

Edited by Glenn

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Frosty, how many folk were you serving?

On an earlier post you were talking about biscuits and gravy and as we're sort of divided by a common language :)  and I know you call biscuits, cookies my mind just went awry thinking of grandma substituting gravy for milk with  Oreos:D. Have you got a recipe so I can try it? The biscuits and gravy not Oreos and gravy that is? 

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We have a section on the site called Vulcans Grill. Go to the top of the forum > pages > articles > Vulcans Grill. 

That is the section where blacksmithing foods are located. Be warned that many were posted by a professional chef and you may gain weight just by reading the posts.

Edited by Glenn

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The Brits and Aussies call cookies "biscuts" round hear they are a quick bread, about the size of a tuna can (tin) made with flour, water, lard, salt and baking powder. Simular to damper and such. 

The recipe i use calls for

2 cups all-purpus flour

2- 1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2tsp salt (i use 1/4)

1/3cup shortening (substitute lard or butter)

3/4cup milk (i nearly double that or I end up with hard tack/pilot bread)

and a Tble spoon of butter.

cut in the shortning with the dry ingredents. Ad the liqid (use a fork to incorperat or it gets tough) use plenty of flour under and abouve to pat out to 1/2" thick cut and place in a pan oiled with the melted butter, coat bith sides. Bake at 475 f 11-15 min. 

Do not need, handle as little as posible or make "drop biscuts" pastery flour is more forgiving.

bechmel sause is a good aproximation or "gravy" seson with sage and pepper or use breakfast sasage or bacon. Use "pan dripings)

 

 

Edited by Charles R. Stevens

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they say, better try and fail other than failing to try at all.  From another forum

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