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Senior Contributor

gardening/canning ramblings

I've come to the conclusion that while I like to garden, even pulling & digging weeds, and I like to EAT all that fresh produce, I no longer like to put up the produce.  I've been dragging my heels on putting up beans-DH & DS really like canned.  Not frozen.  I used the excuse of the pressure canner/cooker wasn't working right & wouldn't hold pressure for 2 yrs.  While at his aunt/uncles/cousins, they suggested a new gasket.  (I knew it needed that but- -)  So, I drug my feet with my family encouraging & promising to help pick & snap them.  Somehow, there was a farming immediate concern when this came to pass.  Ugh!  I HATE to can beans!  The next picking (which they did due to a migraine for me) I will FREEZE tonight.

 

Then there are the beautiful tomatoes which I WILL get to tomorrow.  And the cucumbers that got away from me & will only go for relish now.  Already froze a small picking of strawberries-not a complete failure.

 

 

This week my mom (I know-not this complaint again) threw a real hissy fit again-it's at least once a month now.

AND my poor little grandson had to have an emergency appendectomy so I had the girls 2 nights-no problem but no canning then, please.  Plus my last synvisc shot to my knee.  So it's already been rather exhausting this week.  Just finishing up a batch of refrigerator pickles & then I'm taking a nap. 

 

SO, how many of you get into this canning/freezing?  Lots of things I'd rather be doing & I've decided life's too short to stick yourself with something you don't enjoy.  a

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10 Replies
Senior Contributor

Re: gardening/canning ramblings

Yes Linda, while I do miss the fresh produce (although it's very easy to find)  I absolutely do not miss the gardening nor all the preservation.

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Honored Advisor

Re: gardening/canning ramblings

Irun hot then cold on canning and freezing. This year, I didn't start spring gardens at all. Got the ground torn up, limed, and laid dripirrigation lines forfall/winter gardening. So far, theCarolina garden woukd nit feed a flea. The Virginia one looks good, but I need to hoe it, once all the rain lets up long enough.

I am getting more interested in " small batch" canning...usually stuff like chutneys and other condiments thatadd taste to meats and leafy greens. Lots of great books out on that. We cannot eat jams and jellies snyway, so why save them?

Lots to plant, starting this month. I hope to use a lot of roots and their tops. Not so much stored as fresh.

If people promise to help, then don't, they meed to accept that you did the best you could by yourself. I don't see how you manage, with so much happening all the time!
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Advisor

Re: gardening/canning ramblings

I HATE CANNING.   I WILL NOT CAN!   I have about one hundred jars to get rid of out of the big house... plus the canner.  

 

I don't mind  freezing some.    With only 2 of us it is not worth the effort.

 

I HATE VEGETABLE GARDENING!   Except sweet corn.   Planted with the corn planter,  and sprayed for weeds by field sprayer.  All I do is the electric wire. 

 

My MIL tried to get me to do it.   I always said, "If I save just one more pig,  " I can buy all the frozen Green Giant  baby sweet peas I  want".   I can not and will not eat canned peas... EVER! 

 

Yes,  you usually need to buy the more expensive brands  but  is it worth your time to can and freeze?    NOT MINE!  

 

If they want their green beans canned  they can:  pick, clean and snap them for you.  Otherwise  it ain't going to happen.    Also,  who is planting all these vegetables?    Quit planting so much. 

 

Boy am I blunt?

 

On the mommy dearest front.   Local friend had to put her mom in AL  this week.   If her mom can handle it with ALZ   your mom could  too.    Does she have a call alert button?   If not,  tell her if she wants to stay at home one more week... she will get one and wear it.   Maybe she'll push it and let them deal with her.    So glad my FIL  had the forethought to make certain MIL  was already at  AL.    One of the best things he ever did for us.   Took her for a drive and lunch today.    Asked if we wanted a rain  7 times!    Her conversation cycle runs about every 5 minutes.   Last week Tom and I took a Long Sunday Drive,  we both said NO to taking her with us.   It is no fun when you are biting your tongue the whole time. 

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Honored Advisor

Re: gardening/canning ramblings

Have to say I have always agreed with you on the canning and freezing economics.  I have started fermenting kimchi for Mike, becasue I can do about eight pints for what less than a pint costs, even with buying the veggies at the store, and Napa cabbage and bok choy aren't alwasy cheap, either.  The salt and hot pepper flakes required are dirt cheap, compared to the bought stuff, too. 

 

I have made some very nice chutneys and such; but, the batches are not more than a saucepan full, mostly to use a very pieces of fruit that were getting overripe before we could consume them fresh.  Mango jalapeno chutney on pork tenderloin roasted nice and juicy was a real treat! 

 

I wouldn't waste time on sweet stuff we cannot have anyway, but a fruit butter might be a notble exception, especially since a small batch simmers down well in the crockpot. 

 

This is more what I see in the canning arena now...I guess for smaller households, people who buy at premium prices at farmers' markets.  If canning is more for condiments than side dishes, it isn't such a chore. 

 

I stayed off the Mom subject, because I know some people must think I am too harsh on that one.  I know it's difficult getting older...but you do not have ot make it difficult on everyone else while you're at it. 

 

Somewhere, I think each of us has to have a hard and fast line, where we just cannot take someone stepping over it.  Basic human dignity only allows for so much emotional assault.  If you wouldnt' take it from someone else, you shouldn't have ot take it from someone, just because of shared DNA. 

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Senior Contributor

Re: gardening/canning ramblings

I completely understand your points here Linda. I LOVE going out in the morning and seeing what is ready to harvest and loading my golf cart with the results. I have canned my share but can't make myself do it again.

We like frozen green beans. I blanch and cool and put into  freezer bags. I then put them frozen into a covered skillet with pepper, salt and olive oil. They usually need no water although I have burned way too many green beans trying not to have them swimming in water. They are close to fresh.

 

We have a lot of sweet corn right now and I am hoping DD will take most of it as I planted it for her family. I HATE to freeze corn and have tried cutting it off the cob and then cooking it and cooking it first and chilling before cutting it off. It is still a big mess!  I usually freeze a large bag for three holiday dinners but I am having trouble even thinking about that this year.

 

I am waiting on my Amish Paste tomatoes to ripen. I will put them into boiling water to remove the skins and then cook them before using the emersion blender to make a sauce for the freezer. This is a really thick sauce tomato much better than the Roma.

 

The down side of freezing is that in an emergency the food would ruin and be no good for survival.

 

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Senior Contributor

Re: gardening/canning ramblings

I say if they want canned food, let them can it.  My sister just told me yesterday that her son is into canning now.  He has the family sweet pickle recipe down now!  She still froze sweet corn, but I would imagine he will take that over to someday.  I am not a canner, remember when I tried to make grape jelly...I/we made grape vinegar!!!  My mom never taught me I guess.  I don't think I would have the strength anymore either.  My step-mother-in-law was a big canner/freezer too.  She did teach me to put up chickens, but I haven't done it since.  There are still canned items in my mom's basement and my MIL's basement that need to be pitched.  I really don't think 20 year old pickles/beans would be any good.  As far as you mother...See what you can do about assisted living.  She will be doted on, fed well, and safe.  She could still be taken out for meals once in a while.  Sometimes I think they just want attention...24/7!~ and we need to take care of ourselves too.  But just as you think things are settling down,  something always comes up.

 

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Senior Contributor

Re: gardening/canning ramblings

Working on bread and butter pickles now.  taking a break while they chill.  I love those so my work-no grumbling.  I will do tomatoes & freeze sweet corn.  Usually have lots of help on that.  The remainder of green beans we will eat or I will freeze.  One head of cabbage left.  ? For that.  

 

We cut corn off, add butter, half & half, & salt & oven bake 30 minutes.  One day of work for lots of enjoyment. No calories.  LOL I think it's overwhelming when all this comes at one time.  It will soon all be done.  Really dry here with big cracks in the ground.  Feels like an early fall.

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Senior Contributor

Re: gardening/canning ramblings

It feels like early fall to me too.  did you see on facebook/pinterest that someone put the ear of corn on a drill bit and then pushed it through the ring that peels the corn off!  The ring is in the corn cutter that you would normally put your hands on both sides and push the ring cutter over the corn.  Hey, looked like a quick way to do things!  Dry here too, may get rain this afternoon.  Of course, state fair time, rain and heat!!!

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Senior Contributor

Re: gardening/canning ramblings

I heard someone talking about using the drill method but never using half and half and baking.

I have been thinking of fall the past couple of days of fall too. The walnut leaves are really falling and the grass has slowed growing.

I agree on the need for attention. There is plenty of that at Assisted Living Homes.  

 

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