Thursday, September 1, 2011

Can Do!

I've been off the blog for a week, but I haven't been slacking! In that time I finished up my job at the monastery and have had two days of training and some other work for the book on The Saint John's Bible. But most of all, I've been trying to preserve as much of the harvest as possible!

A friend said she remembered rushes on canning jars in Decatur, Illinois, when she was younger. I thought in this age of big box shopping that wouldn't be possible-- Fleet Farm has jars stacked a mile high and a mile wide. But last night I went to exchange the jelly jars my husband brought home for pint jars I actually needed, and lo and behold, the only ones left had wide-mouth lids. I then passed a woman in the store guarding her cart. It was not a shopping cart but a hand cart they use in Home Depot for heavy supplies. She had it loaded up with more than 12 dozen pint jars. She's cleaned them out and then some!I thought of begging her to trade me one dozen for the wide-mouth jars, but recovered my dignity and moved on. I had already gone out in my rush to get there before the store closed in my Bret Favre Vikings t-shirt I wear when gardening and was feeling vulnerable.

The photo above was taken on Tuesday of the canning I did over the weekend. It includes tomatoes, red salsa, yellow salsa, tomatillo sauce (an experiment), frozen corn (thanks Deb for the sealing system), peach preserves and sweet relish. I'm especially excited about the sweet relish, although it was the most labor intensive.  Since this shot was taken, I've done more salsa, trying to keep up with the cherry tomatoes. I have a whole counter of tomatoes that (Inshallah) will get canned tomorrow, and way too many cucumbers that will hopefully make for a simpler relish and maybe some hamburger/sliced dills (they're too big for straight up dills). For relish, I'm thinking of making sweet pickles and then when it's time just pulsing them in the food processor to make relish. We do eat much more relish (in egg salad, tuna salad, etc) than pickles.
Only got about 4 purple cherokee tomatoes, but look at 'em!

Colorado peaches being prepared for peach preserves

peach preserves in the steam canner-- LOVE the steam canner


Anonymous said...

Love it. it is very satisfying to have something ping when done. I would love to get your salsa recipe if it is not a closely guarded secret. :) Susan a

Susan Sink said...

Susan, not only isn't it a secret, here is the link to the blog entry that tells how to make it. I have it down now and can do it very fast, but it never takes more than 20 minutes... take the time to thicken it on the stove after you've blended it. It is DEEElicious!!