Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Free Produce! Did someone say free?!

When people find out that you are a canner, you start to get offered free produce.  What a great way to save money! 

I was having a hard time keeping up with the pickling cucumbers in my garden.  I ended up giving a bunch to my co-worker (who has been my canning guide).  Her husband made some pickles that I hear rival Claussen's (my favorite).  I'll get to taste them soon...

The above mentioned co-worker had a hard time keeping up with her tomatoes.  I ended up with a big box of them, and turned them into 3 quarts and 1 pint of crushed tomatoes.  I know it doesn't sound like much, but they really reduce down a lot. 

My aunt Inga (a master gardener) has a pergola with grapes in her yard.  She invited me to come pick them.  That's what I did on my lunch break yesterday.  I only picked about half of them and ended up with around 10-12 pounds.  They'll be turned into grape jelly this weekend.

Between my garden, free produce, pick your own farms, and the farmer's market, I keep myself busy in the canning department.  I haven't burned myself out yet, but I'm trying to slow down.  The problem with canning is that when something is ripe, it is ripe RIGHT NOW.  Not tomorrow, or the next day.  Right now.  We currently have a small freezer, so I'm only able to freeze small amounts.  I'm looking forward to an additional freezer so that I'm able to spread out my canning efforts in the future.

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