Niemann’s ‘Homegown and Handmade’ Issued in Expanded Edition

Book cover

A second, expanded edition of “Homegrown and Handmade: A Practical Guide to Self-Reliant Living” by homesteader, writer and self-sufficiency expert Deborah Niemann, an online instructor this summer at the Stockbridge School of Agriculture, was published June 1 by New Society Publishers of Canada.

Niemann is teaching “Raising Dairy Goats Sustainably” this summer.

The publisher says of the new edition of “Homegown and Handmade,” which was Niemann’s first book, “Whether your goal is increasing your self-reliance or becoming a full-fledged homesteader, it’s packed with answers and solutions to help you rediscover traditional skills, take control of your food from seed to plate, and much more. This comprehensive guide to food and fiber from scratch proves that attitude and knowledge is more important than acreage.”

The paperback volume “shows how making things from scratch and growing some of your own food can help you eliminate artificial ingredients from your diet, reduce your carbon footprint, and create a more authentic life.”

Niemann says the first edition, published in 2011, included five sections, on garden, orchard, backyard poultry, homegrown dairy and fiber from sheep, rabbits and llamas. For the new, 336-page second edition, she added sections on homegrown pork, honey, maple syrup and homegrown businesses. “I also provided gluten-free alternatives for many of the recipes when revising the book, and I updated statistics,” she notes.

Niemannpresents and teaches extensively on topics such as soapmaking, cheesemaking, livestock care, composting and home schooling. She and her family raise sheep, pigs, cattle, goats, chickens and turkeys on their Midwest farm for meat, eggs and dairy products, while an organic garden and orchard provide fruit and vegetables.

She is the author of two other books, “Ecothrifty: Cheaper, Greener Choices for a Happier, Healthier Life” and “Raising Goats Naturally: A Complete Guide to Milk, Meat, and More” and maintains the website

Her three-credit course on raising goats, part of the Stockbridge School’s online certificate in sustainable food and farming and the sustainable food and farming associate’s degree,explores the differences between conventional, organic and sustainable methods of raising goats and managing a dairy for home or commercial use and includes current research on goat health and management. Students also learn about breeding, birthing and raising kids, the basics of cheese and soap making, composting waste and using milk or whey as fertilizer. Niemann will teach another online course in spring 2018, “Pastured Poultry.”