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What Are You Preserving, and How Are You Doing It? (2016–)


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I discovered I had a ton of garden garlic from last year in the cold room.  Many were starting to sprout slightly.  I broke some of them down into cloves with the skin still on.  Put the cloves on double foil with a squirt of oil and salt.  They were covered up and baked in a 400 f oven along with some butternut squash.  Not sure how long they were in there but it was too long.  Many cloves were dried out but smelled delicious.  I took the skins off and added a bit of water to the pot.  They simmered gently for 15 minutes and that was enough to rehydrate them.  I puréed them and put them in a thin layer in a vac bag...thin enough that aliquots can be broken off.  They are in the freezer.  I see roasted garlic mashed potatoes in my future.

it would have been very bad to have thrown them out.

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Max Halley's Piccalilli.  Recipe available online here

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I made a half recipe and ended up with about a quart and a half.  Based on availability, I used sugar snap peas instead of broad beans, Brussels sprouts instead of broccoli and yellow onion instead of red but otherwise followed the recipe. 

I didn't process it in any way, it's just going in the fridge.  

Tasty stuff. 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 8/17/2020 at 10:45 AM, chromedome said:

Not a huge pickle-eater but the grandkids are, and it's that time of the year, so I made up a couple of batches. Three pints of bread-and-butter and eight pints of a quick dill pickle, both from my dad's copy of The Complete Book of Small Batch Preserving (this is my first time trying anything from the book, so no personal feedback, but 87% of the reviews on Amazon are 4- and 5-star).
 

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Just to follow up on this, since I'd neglected to do so in the fall. The dill pickles were perfectly fine, the bread and butter needed a bit more sugar (to my taste). I'm happy enough with the results to this point, have amended the bread-and-butter recipe in my copy of the book, and will doubtless try a few others in the course of the summer.

 

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“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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Also, I was down to the last pint of the applesauce I put up last autumn (27 pints) so I grabbed 20 lbs of apples from the local grower before he closed his storefront for the season. Less a few that I ate out of hand, and a few more that spoiled while waiting for me to get down to business, that still gave me 11 pints.

 

As a bonus, having never done the math before, I now know that I get through 50-60 pints of applesauce a year or roughly a pint a week. That's handy to know for reference purposes (a canner load of 9 pints takes about 13 pounds of apples, so keeping me supplied with applesauce requires roughly 70-80 lbs of apples/year).

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“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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My nearly-invariable breakfast is steel-cut oatmeal, and I put a healthy glop of applesauce on it in lieu of other sweeteners. I also sometimes have it on toast as a breakfast (on mornings when I wake up and realize I've forgotten to make oatmeal...) and I like it with yogurt as a snack/dessert at random intervals. That accounts for most of my usage, though I'll also occasionally have it on pancakes or waffles, or incorporated into muffins or a cake.

 

Oh, and I'll also turn a few pints a year into fruit leather for the grandkids. :)

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“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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8 hours ago, heidih said:

And you are probably using quite flavorful apples not grocery store blah

I use a mix of whatever's available from the grower, during the months they're open, but usually try to mix at least 2-3 varieties for broader flavor and sweet-tart balance. In autumn I also gather apples from the "feral" trees growing in my neighbourhood, some of which produce surprisingly good apples at nearly market size.

I'll need to make more from supermarket apples before the summer is over, but supermarkets here stock local NB/NS apples most of the year, as well. In fairness, when I *do* need to get apples trucked in from across the continent, I mostly taste the difference when eating them out of hand. In the applesauce it's much less apparent.

“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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6 minutes ago, teonzo said:

 

Time to plant your own tree.

 

 

 

Teo

 

When we get our own place, yeah...that's in the plan. :)

“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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When possible, I make applesauce and freeze it in the portion sizes we use.  We normally (pre-pandemic) have a family gathering in the fall and my SIL would bring me a batch of apples from their wild trees.  They'd get chucked in the pot skins and all and after they are cooked, put through a food mill, catching the bad bits.  Such wonderful applesauce!  It is sweet but has no added sugar and a lovely rosy hue.  Wonderful stuff.

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21 minutes ago, ElsieD said:

When possible, I make applesauce and freeze it in the portion sizes we use.  We normally (pre-pandemic) have a family gathering in the fall and my SIL would bring me a batch of apples from their wild trees.  They'd get chucked in the pot skins and all and after they are cooked, put through a food mill, catching the bad bits.  Such wonderful applesauce!  It is sweet but has no added sugar and a lovely rosy hue.  Wonderful stuff.

That's generally how I do the autumn batch with the "feral" apples, because prepping them is otherwise a PITA. A few of the trees around here produce apples with a rosy blush to their flesh, and one small crabapple tree yields apples the size of a large cherry with a rich deep-pink hue, so I always include a few of those for color.

“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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In a last ditch effort to make use of the very end of my lemons,  I attempted to make a lemon vanilla freezer jam? pie filling? etc....

It's a quart and a half and it didn't set, was more like a syrup.  There is no peel in this, I'm not a marmalade fan.

I reprocessed it today and added more sugar and held it a 210F for a couple minutes longer than normal  It darkened a bit from original, maybe the sugars were starting to caramelize a bit (?).  Frozen plate test shows a thicker product now.  A possible success.

 

 

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Costco had pork loins on hot buy.  Bought a larger one and made cured pork loin/back bacon/canadian bacon with  a mixture of Morton's Tender quick, sugar and spices.  3 days in the cure and sliced today for frying and freezing tomorrow.  Came out pretty good.  Mostly for egg sandwiches.

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