I also preserved quite a bit of food this weekend, well, only two things, but a lot of one of them. It will be really nice to enjoy our favorite sauces, made from local ingredients, during the middle of winter. I just wish we had a larger freezer and am jealous of those fortunate enough to have, or have space for, a deep freeze. But I am thankful for what we do have, and really, we manage to do quite a bit living in a small, barely functional apartment.
Without further ado, here is this week's garden booty:
Here we've got: a petite bell pepper, a banana pepper, a zucchini with a lovely flower still attached, 6 roma tomatoes (which will finish ripening in the window), and 3 butternut squash.
This is the "motherload" picture, starting from the right we've got: 2 poblano peppers, 2 ripe serranos, tons of banana peppers, a petite bell pepper, lots of jalapenos, TONS of tomatoes (which will, again, be ripening the rest of the way in our window sill), 2 zucchini, 2 cucumbers (nabbed from another abandoned plot), and 2 butternut squash.
6 roma tomatoes, and yes, these too will be ripening more fully in the window.
And finally: 2 yellow straightneck squash, a zucchini, and 2 more butternut squash.
This is just what we got from the gardens!
This week's CSA:
Another gorgeous CSA quarter share, starting from the right we've got: I believe thyme, potatoes, New Mexican Chiles (!!!!), green onions, a small head of cabbage, 3 cucumbers, and 3 big tomatoes.
(Can you tell we'll be having lots of B's Famous Summer Pickles? Those are seriously one of the best snacks I've ever had!)
And this week's Farmer's Market Booty:
Starting from the right we have: 2 red onions, a yellow onion, 2 Herbal Oats granola bars (this week we got the peach "focus" flavor with Ginko Biloba in it, this is our favorite variety so far.), lot of little bulbs of garlic (not sure what kind), serranos (we needed more than were on our plant), 2 red bell peppers, some gorgeous chard, some PESTICIDE FREE peaches (we were starting to get frustrated at the market, walking from stand to stand asking if the peaches had been sprayed, we got some from the only stand that didn't spray, yay, but ARGH, damn pesticides), and 6 big tomatoes (can you tell how much we like tomatoes yet?).
This week's food preservation activities included:
- Pickling a pint of pickled peppers. ;-)
- Making and freezing a double batch of Green Chile Taco Sauce.
Now, it might seem like a lot to go through the whole canning process for one pint of pickled peppers, but I have never canned before and I want to learn. We picked all the "ready" peppers, and had to halve, and then halve again the pickled pepper recipe in the Ball Blue Book of Preserving. The recipe called for prepared horseradish, which I thought was kind of odd, but I got some to use, since, well, I don't want to die because I didn't follow the recipe, so the jar looks a little cloudy due to the bits of horseradish and pepper seeds floating around.
Here are the pepper slices soaking on a salt water solution. We did this on Friday night, so they could soak for the called for 12-18 hours.
And here is the finished product, our very first home canned jar of pickled peppers. We were both really proud of this. And I bet you can imagine our delight this morning when we went to check the seal to find out it had properly sealed itself! Wahoo! Too bad we are going to be getting our favorite pizzas REAL soon so we can load 'em down with these peppers, we just can't wait to try them!
My second preservation activity this week was to make a double batch of our favorite sauce recipe I've created to this point: Green Chile Taco Sauce.
This took awhile, but it was well worth it. We ended up with 11 cups of Green Chile Taco Sauce (I'm not sure why it ended up being an odd number, I think it's because the size of the peppers and tomatoes varies). We kept one cup out to use for a special Mexi-meal I am making this week (that involve those peaches you saw from the market - we are really excited about this one), and the rest went in the freezer for later use.
This is the mound of veggies used in the sauce.
And this is what we ended up with! Yum, yum, yum!
Well, I'm going to start working on the Garden Update, I want to get it posted today.
'Til next time (which should be pretty soon)! ;-)