Saturday, August 31, 2013

Catching Up

It's been pretty busy over here; first we went on vacation- we've been taking a trip out to Glacier National Park in Montana every year, since 2008. I can't get enough of the place... it's like going home every time we go there. We spend almost the entire time hiking; this year we logged just over 60 miles for the week. Whew!

When we got back, the garden (as expected) was in full swing. My mom housesits for us when we're away (THANKS MOM!!) and she did her best to keep up with everything. There was, however, a zucchini hiding from her:

                Feed Me, Seymour!

So, as soon as we got back, we had to hit the ground running. I picked, blanched, and froze three pounds of green beans, and have been cycling pounds of zucchini through the dehydrator. I also had to scramble to get the apples that were starting to fall, and canned up some pie filling and applesauce. Blackberries are off the charts as well, so many pints of jam were canned up during the week after work.

Now the pears are here. I picked a bunch the other day and I'm just waiting for them to ripen a little bit more before I can them. I'm thinking I'll put them in a medium syrup with vanilla... mmm.

Plums are also on the way- the tree is loaded and I'll be up to my ears in those in another couple of days. I've scavenged the few early ones and have them soaking in some vodka; I'll give them about a week, and then strain out the spent fruit. A shot of that, plus a little simple syrup in a glass of seltzer makes for a nice treat after all this hard work!

True to form, my tomatoes are just putzing along. I have 3 (would be 4 but I ate the first one) reddish ones on the vine, and oodles of green ones just taking their time. I'll be stopping by the farm stand down the road tomorrow, to see if they have any uglies boxed up and ready for sauce. I nabbed a flat from them last week ($18 for 10 pounds of organic heirloom beauties!) and had a batch of sauce in no time. I like using my crock pot for stuff like this; I can put it on in the morning before work and when I get home it's pretty much ready. Beats standing over the stove all day- it's still too warm here for that!

What's your favorite thing to put up for the winter?

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