Pineapple, Pork and Kinka-Poo

The 2021 garden is starting off good so far, as it just gave us a perfect pineapple. It was ripened on the plant and we managed to get to it before the critters did. Besides this pineapple looking so great, it set the standard of what a pineapple should be. It was the sweetest, juiciest pineapple we’ve ever tasted.

A perfect pineapple!

Last year we planted some dragon fruit from cuttings and it produced a few very nice fruits. The big surprise was how big and fast the plants grew in just a year, considering it’s a cactus. The plant got so big that it outgrew the trellis we built for it and we had to build a new, much bigger one. We took 24 good-sized cuttings off the original plant and set them around the new trellis. If they grow like the original ones did, starting next year we should have a great continual harvest of dragon fruit. Besides being healthy and delicious, dragon fruit makes an awesome margarita!

The new trellis for the dragon fruit.

You know we love to experiment with making different types of foods. Well, our neighbor came by the other day with some fresh pork that he had just processed. So of course we had to get some ribs and a front shoulder. The ribs still had the skin and some belly on them so we thought, why not try and make some chicharrones (pork rinds). We found two recipes, one with just the skin and another where you leave a little of the fat on the skin. We did them both ways and they turned out good for our first time, of course, we coated them with some salt and some spicy chili powder.

Homemade chicharrones.

As for the ribs, they will get some smoke and then a slow cook on the grill with some of our homemade BBQ sauce. The belly pieces have been cured as bacon and will then be diced into chunks with brown sugar and chili powder for some Super Bowl snacks. And the shoulder we will eventually cure for a ham, we’ll let you know how that turns out in a month or so.

That’s a lot of sausage!

A couple of days prior to our neighbor showing up with the fresh pork we had been to the butcher in town and bought a bunch of pork to make sausage. So the day before he showed up we had just finished making 20 lbs. of Italian and breakfast sausage. At this point, we are set on pork for a while.

Wild oyster mushrooms growing right in our driveway.

I mentioned last time that we go looking for wild oyster mushrooms that grow around the property. Well, this time we didn’t even have to go looking for them, they were growing right in our driveway. A while back we lined our driveway with some trees we cut down, and our favorite mushrooms decided to take a hold on them. Hopefully, they will continue to grow on this log as they are delicious mushrooms, especially when sautéed on top of a steak.

We only see ours at night, so this is a picture from the web so you can see what they look like.

We love seeing all the different wildlife we have around here, but sometimes…ugh. We expect the animals to get in the garden and eat the veggies and the sweet fruits, that’s just what they do. But lately, the trees above the back deck have ripe berries of some type that the kinkajous can’t resist. For the last couple of weeks or so they have been up there every night eating and dropping the hard peas sized berries on the deck. That’s not a problem, as we can sweep them off and all is good. But they are craping from 40′ up and it makes a big 2′ splatter when it hits the deck and the tables. If we don’t get it cleaned up first thing in the morning it dries and needs a lot of scrubbing.  Plus they don’t seem to mind that we are out there in the evenings. I can’t imaging sitting out there for a nice dinner and have a kinkajou do a major drop on one of us. So until they eat all the stuff off of those trees and move on, we’ve been eating our meals inside.

These 2 toucans were hanging out over the casita just yesterday.

I think the toucans are figuring out that we are the “Toucan Hideaway” because they have been showing up quite a bit lately. It could just be that all the trees are full of all the stuff they like to eat, or maybe it’s the two big giant toucan decoys we have in the yard. Either way, it’s great to have these big beautiful birds around here.

The beautiful Toucan, sitting above our back deck.

I know we are all tired of this covid crap and can’t wait to get back to some sort of normalcy and traveling again. Of course, here like everywhere, masks, social distance, and constant washing of hands are a must. For the past month and a half, we have been on an 8:00 pm curfew and no alcohol sales after 6:00 pm. They just revised our curfew the other day to 10:00 pm. This means we can actually go out to dinner and have a couple of drinks and still make it back to the house before we get fined. Our borders are still closed for land and sea travel, but the airport is open. With the new rules, you must have a negative test when flying into Belize and another test before you enter back into the states. I guess all this must be working because the active cases are going down. As of today, there are 259 active cases for the entire country. Hopefully, it keeps on this downward trend and we will see some of you down here soon.

We’ve got this one!

They say if you haven’t grown up by the time you turn 60, then you don’t have to! Next week we are heading over to the coast to do a little fishing for my birthday and Valentine’s Day getaway. Besides that, February 14th is the close of lobster season, so we need to get our fill of those delicious crustaceans until the season reopens again in June.


3 thoughts on “Pineapple, Pork and Kinka-Poo”

  1. Awesome pictures. I am going to challenge you to step up the no drinking to 3 days, 29-31st. 😁

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