Monday, July 18

Garden Produce Means Get to Work Canning, Preserving, & Dehydrating

Elephant Garlic, Buds, and Cloves
No, I haven't disappeared -- although, I know it feels like it. It's just that time of year when food calls for interaction and some things (er, ah, like, uh, blogging) is not number one on the list.  This is rotation-resting time for this year's garden, so I've supplemented my chard, tomatoes, banana peppers, onions, and beans with some help from the local Farmer's Market. This also gives me a chance to try new veggies grown locally and keep up with new methods. Cucumbers, squashes, eggplant, silver corn, and fresh garlic will give the garden a rest and stop the squash bug cycle. (Haha. Like that's going to work!)  Andrea Meyers has included my Granny Grumbles Soup Base/Dip recipe in her Grow Your Own Roundup, along with some fabulous recipes from around the world. They all look delicious and I know you'll want to try at least one, if not all of them.
But, this is what I've been doing for the past few days:
  • Prepared carrots, zucchini, onions, cauliflower, and cucumbers for sweet mixed pickles, Mixture is in ice water and I have to run out and get more pint jars! Aaargh.
  • Prepared and dried tarragon, Thai basil (new herb, to me), garlic buds, and stevia. (Garlic flower buds are so much  more intense in flavor but great in stews, so I like to have some on hand. A little goes a long way.)
  • Roasted tomato mixture for soup and sauce base: roma tomatoes, onions, banana peppers, sprinkling of above herbs, salt and pepper, olive oil.
  • Canned seven pints of roasted tomato mixture.
  • Prepared soup with extra roasted tomato mixture plus odd pieces of vegetables left after cutting even-sized pieces for dehydrator.
  • Prepared and dehydrated eight pints of delicious sweet cantaloupe and Japanese melon for snacking, later. (Okay. So, I tried some, but just to make sure it wasn't poisoned!.)
  • Working on a brand-new recipe for garlic, cheese, pastry, and...  will get back to you...
Thai Basil - Isn't it pretty?

[ This section added after first posting so you can see the pickles.] Didn't have time to run to the store, so decided to just use these quart jars. They don't last long, anyway. The mixed pickle jars contain cauliflower, zucchini, carrots, cucumbers, and onions. I like pickles in my sandwiches and hate those little circles, so these go from edge to edge of the bread and give me a taste in each bite. They also make lovely little platters for salsas on your plate, too!


So what have you been doing these past few days?

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