Friday, July 31, 2009
This week in our box we have basil, broccoli, peppers, summer squash, green beans, fresh garlic, beets, onion, cucumber, and 2 types of lettuce.
This week I picked up some extras - more basil, cabbage and onions. I keep making batches of pesto. It is quick and easy to make in large batches, and I can keep some in the fridge fresh, and then freeze the rest. Yum. I like to add a tray in the dehydrator each time too, so that I can have dried basil for pasta and seasoning in the winter.
It is switching into fruit season here too. We have many spring fruit around here, but August is when it really kicks into high gear. Peaches, cherries, plums, blueberries...yum. We picked up a bunch of fruit this week. I am dehydrating some cherries & blueberries - which is YUMMY in fresh home made granola. We also love to make jams, syrups and pie filling for winter. So good!
Thursday, July 23, 2009
In our CSA box this week: purple beans, beets, pepper, swiss chard, onions, eggplant, 2 types of lettuce, parsley and basil!
The 'extras' I picked up this week included more beets - to pickle some - beans, and mushrooms.
Each Thursday when we return from our CSA pickup, we make a run through the garden to pick too, and then get to work in the kitchen. I rinse and bag foods for meals throughout the week and put those in the fridge. I then take the extras and that which we won't eat that week, and blanch, dry, or can. With beans I usually blanch for 3 minutes, plunge into ice water, drain, and then pack into freezer bags. They are great in January, I tell ya!
Monday, July 20, 2009
This time of year I'm already busy in the kitchen. I blanch, bag, freeze. I dehydrate and dry. I can. We love to eat fresh veggies all summer but our plan includes preserving food to last all winter too!
While I love putting away canned and frozen foods I also love my dehydrator. I can dry fresh herbs, vegetables, fruit...and use them in just about anything. We love eating dehydrated cherry tomatoes like chips. Or adding dried raspberries into home made granola. But in February with feet of snow on the ground, it is also extremely satisfying to make a vegetable soup with carrots, squash, beans, peppers, tomatoes and herbs grown right in our own yard.
This week I started hanging my shallots, dill and cilantro/coriander to dry outside. That works great for the big plants. I bring other herbs to dry inside - savory, oregano, parsley, basil, chives, lovage, shisho...all quick and easy to dry in the dehydrator. One of the best things about freezing and drying is that it can be done as we go - no big prep, sterilizing or huge batches. I can just keep doing a bit a day if needed, all summer! And it adds up!
I like taking the herbs when they are dry and putting them in canning jars. Keeping them as whole as possible keeps the flavor better and you can just crush into your recipe when you need them!
I also dry a LOT of vegetables - peppers, tomatoes, summer & winter squash, beets, carrots - easily bagged or stored in canning jars to be used in the winter! Right now I have a few trays of peppers going and the house smells amazing. I do love the dehydrator. It doesn't take much space or energy, is easy to clean, and I can dry a lot of food. All good!
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Thursday, July 9, 2009
Today was CSA day! In our box this week: beets, peas, beans, daikon radishes, broccoli, onions. basil, pepper, kale, 2 types of lettuce.
We also picked up a few extras. Summer squash, mushrooms and more kohlrabi.
This time of year means a lot of greens, and so that also means I've been busy blanching and freezing. More on that soon!
Thursday, July 2, 2009
CSA Box Today:: snow peas, snap peas, purple beans, kohlrabi, spring onions, kale, 2 types of lettuce, chinese cabbage, garlic scapes, oregano, beets.
I also picked up a few extras at the CSA farm - mushrooms, more beets and some broccoli. Planning on making some beet kvass with the extra beets. Can't wait to see how it turns out!