Preserving the harvest

We had a very productive weekend—had some people over for a garden tour (and of course the necessary wine after), picked vegetables, and did some canning. I would have done more canning, actually, if I weren’t still sort of recovering from my surgery—I just get tired too fast these days.

Produce

As you can see from the photograph, it was a similar harvest to the last one—green and purple beans, white and yellow cukes, and a bunch of different tomatoes.  Although you can see on the left (front) of this picture, we got a couple of “white” tomatoes and, I think, a “brown” one. . . this is one of those instances where being more organized would really come in handy.  Because I know I bought a white variety of heirloom tomato, and I know I bought one that was supposed to be almost brown.  But of course I can’t remember the names, and I have no idea what I planted where, so really, every picking event is a surprise party.  ;)

So since we had such a wealth of produce, we decided we’d better get busy and can some of it. We also still had our case of peaches we’d bought a couple of weeks ago (they keep pretty well in the fridge, I’ve found), so the first thing we did was make a quadruple batch of peach salsa and can that.  And I’ve never tried “Dilly Beans” before, but I thought bean pickles sounded good, so that was the next thing we did.  I also had a bunch of cucumbers I needed to do something with, and I’d found a recipe for Bread and Butter Pickles that I thought sounded good.

So here’s where it gets interesting (I’ll bet you thought that part would never come, didn’t you??). . . the recipe calls for 6 pounds of cucumbers.  I was being so clever (I used our kitchen scale and everything!)—I got out some white ones, a couple of green ones, and a couple of little yellow ones.  I thought that would be so pretty in the jars!  (I was right, it does look nice.)  But I couldn’t believe it when the scale said 6 pounds when I’d only piled about four cucumbers on there.  Well, I thought, ok. . . that’s what the recipe says, and I’ve got to go by the recipe.

So I sliced up the cukes and mixed them with salt, garlic, and ice, and let them sit for three hours.  (It looked like a pretty small bowl of cucumber slices—this recipe was supposed to make 6 pints.) I made up a batch of the liquid—I always make a double batch of liquid, because I often seem to run out of that—I suppose that means I’m not packing my jars full enough, but whatever. . . I didn’t want to run out, so double batch it was.

When the liquid was hot, I put the cucumber slices in for a few minutes, and then packed them into the previously prepared pint jars. . . and came up with about one and two-thirds jars of pickles.  For this I used 9 CUPS of sugar.  Needless to say, I had a LOT of liquid left over.

Pickles and salsa

So later I was complaining to Trevor about pickle recipes and how you never know how many jars it will really make, how you never know how much liquid you’ll really need, etc., etc.  And he listened and sympathized, and then pointed out to me the little button on the scale that switches it from pounds to grams. . . I think you can probably guess what I’d done.  I insisted on weighing some more cucumbers just to make sure that really WAS what happened. . . and yes, that was it.  I actually had 615 GRAMS, not 6.15 pounds.

At least I’ll know to check that button next time.  :)

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3 Responses to Preserving the harvest

  1. Sheri says:

    Way to go Trevor!!!

  2. Avatar of Lyz Lyz says:

    Oh, I hate that! I always have to press that button about six times to make sure I’m getting the right measurement.

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