Monday, September 2, 2013

Now We're Cooking!

"Tis the season for canning and cooking garden veggies. I am even more of a newbie to canning then I am to farming - this fall is the first time I have ever made pickles or canned salsa. So far, I have I made fermented kosher garlic dills pickles (which won't be ready for several weeks) and   refrigerator  pickles. After the live music finished playing yesterday, I brought out a quart jar of the refrigerator pickles to try and we pretty much finished them off in a few minutes. Yep, very good. I will be making another batch or two tomorrow, and want to also try canning some baby dills.
We baked sourdough breads Friday night for the Saturday Farmers market, and on Sunday the oven was still warm enough that Rog harvested  a bushel of hops flowers and spread them on trays inside to dry.
The hops dried perfectly and smell wonderful - now we just have to learn how to make beer!
Today, Labor Day, we  had a  relaxing day  off with no farm events.   We slept in (well, I got up at 7 and fed all the animals, then went back to bed until 9.)  When we finally arose,  Rog made some delectable pancakes, topped with homemade blueberry preserves that was a gift of two friends of our former intern Jen, who spent the night  Friday on their trek across the country. [Thanks, Jill and Joe - good luck in your new home in Ontario!]
Rog was a cooking maniac today - he also made a ginormous pot of minestrone with our garden veggies:  tomatoes, onions, potatoes,  romano beans, zuchinni, carrots, garlic and herbs. Wow!  There was a nip of fall in the air today and that minestrone totally hit the spot.
And then tonight Rog cleaned a couple bushels of  elderberries to make wine and mead. I diverted  some to the  food dehydrator.  I like to use dried elderberries to make elderberry syrup to help ward off winter colds.
Trays of tomatoes are also drying in the food dehydrator.
Here is my very first batch of salsa, made from our huge, beautiful Federle tomatoes.  The jar lids have been popping merrily as I post. Some are canned in classic turquoise  canning jars (the darker jars).  My eyes are still a bit swollen from crying as I chopped all the onions and hot peppers, but the house smells so spicy good now. I cannot wait to taste this salsa tomorrow! 

1 comment:

Leslie Lyne Zantow said...

Its a wonderful busy time of year. We can't find any elderberries this year. We picked a few bags 2 weeks ago but most needed another week. Went out Sunday looking and all the berries were "gone"! May need to try making crab apple wine instead.
How do you know when the hops are ready to pick? Ours have yellow pollen but not sure if sticky enough.
I see there is another daily painting challenge and I am tempted but nuts to consider it with way too much canning to do. 50 qts of garlic dills and 75# of sauerkraut all done and now tomatoes and apples.
Do you come over to Winona for the Family Art Day? I will be teaching doll making again this year. Would be fun to see you. I need to send you a check for reshipping. I keep getting busy and forget all about it.