Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Summer Bounty

Last week the boys were visiting Illinois for the week...it was their first trip there without us.  I took advantage of only having one little at home and worked at unpacking and organizing my office, deep cleaning the house, and generally getting caught up.  It was at least 1 1/2 weeks of work on its own.  But then, I went to Shipshewana, to the market to buy blueberry plants for my mother in law...5 for $20--and she is starting a berry farm, so a great deal for her!  I happened to find some major deals which detracted from the original goal of getting things done.  I bought 2 boxes of very ripe tomatoes for $1 each, 2 bags of very ready onions for $1, and 2 eggplants for $.50 each.  I went to another stand and they had green beans 2 pounds for $1 and they needed to be cooked immediately, I bought 5 bags (10 pounds).  Then, I went to the bulk foods store and bought a box, I think about a 1/2 peck, of apples for $17 (not fantastic, but not bad!).  On the way home, and Amish farmer was selling sweet corn for $2.50 a dozen and I bought 2 dozen.   Let's just say, when I got home...Aaron was leery about how we were going to get it all done and finish the monumental list of to do's.  This is how we got it all done, and yes, I said we--because my awesome husband took care of the apples all on his own!

I started by cutting the tops off the tomatoes and cutting the spots out, I don't peel them because I have a great machine (a victorio strainer) that you'll see later.  Plopped them in the pot, and added a little bit of salt.  I cooked it on medium until they looked good and cooked down.

Meanwhile, I cut the ends off of the greenbeans and made 2 piles--blanch/freeze and cook immediately.  Then, I blanched the beans and laid them out to dry.

place them in boiling water, for 3 minutes and add to cold water to stop the cooking process.

this is the cooling process...

Then, I put the others in the crockpot with onions and bacon, and cooked them on low overnight for dinner the next day.  Next, I went outside to shuck the corn and brought it in for blanching too!

after cooking and cooling
I use my super sharp cutco knife to cut the corn off the cob

I freeze in one big bag and just take out a cup or two when I need it!

In the meanwhile, Aaron was busy cutting the cores out of the apples and putting them in my awesome applesauce pot to cook down and get super soft.

I just throw my apples in the pot, add a little bit of water, and turn it on.

this is a super heavy pot, it's an old pressure cooker and doesn't burn the apples.  This is the apples almost done cooking.

After the tomatoes and apples are done cooking and cooled, I put them through my Victorio...it looks a lot like THIS but is a much older model.  It strains out the skins, and seeds, etc.  It makes my tomatoes into tomatoes into juice and my apples into applesauce. 

before it starts doing its thing

here it is spitting out all of the yuckies

I filled gallon sized bags about half way up, folded them over, and froze them in the pan so they would stack well in the freezer.  
I chopped up the onions and froze them like I did in this post.  I just pull them out by the handful when I need them.  I also put the tomato juice in bags and froze them flat, for easy freezer organization.  How have you been doing on preserving your summer foods?

Blessings to you,

Linking up at:

Growing Home


1 comment:

Jacinda @ Growing Home said...

It all looks so fresh and healthy! I just love seeing pictures of God's bountiful harvest. Thanks for sharing at GH!