Last week was a very busy time in the kitchen. The garden is producing well, and local farm produce is getting ready. I consider preserving my foods to be a savings. Here is a rundown of what I preserved this past week.
On Monday I dehydrated squash and zucchini (both from the garden). I vacuum sealed these in pint jars. We had a storm come through that night which blew over my mom's tomatoes. Several green ones were knocked off. Tuesday I made chow chow (a southern relish). The best thing about chow chow is that you can use pretty much whatever you have on hand. For this batch I used the green tomatoes, zucchini, cabbage, peppers, and onions. Everything except the three onions were from the garden. It was a good way to use up many of the extra vegetables I had. Also on Tuesday I made blackberry syrup. Normally we eat maple syrup with pancakes, but I wanted to try some homemade fruit syrups.
Wednesday was an easier day. I canned one batch of sweet pickle relish. It combines peppers, cucumbers, celery, and onions. While W will not eat most of those on their own, he will happily eat them pickled. Thursday was a new to me canning recipe - candied jalapeno pepper slices. I have to wait a couple of weeks before we can try them. I wanted to do this with the first harvest of jalapeno peppers so I will know if I need to make more or not. I took the day off Friday. On Saturday I got corn from a local farmer and froze several packs of whole kernel corn. I also used up some local peaches in several jars of peach syrup. I did two different types of refrigerator pickles using the Mexican sour gherkin cucumbers.
All of this kitchen work meant I stayed pretty close to home all week. I spent some time working on a baby blanket that will be a gift. I only have 3 weeks left so I need to make more time each day.
I ordered some seeds off eBay. They were delivered quickly were fairly inexpensive. None of them were anything I could purchase locally. I also purchased a pair of shorts that were reasonably priced.
I posted a review of the book I received and was able to immediately request a new book.
I continued to pick piles of veggies from the garden. We are getting a good assortment. I am trying to either preserve or eat everything. I have also been harvesting plenty of herbs.
I planted some zinnia seeds that were given to me. Originally we had planned to move the last raised bed but have not had time. I decided to plant something there instead since it was in the area I was watering. I hope to have some flowers to cut for arrangements later.
On the pantry challenge front - I almost stuck to my budget. I spent $27 this past week. This does not include the corn but does include the peaches that I purchased. I neglected to keep up with our meals. I am planning to stick to the $25 again this week. Most likely I will be purchasing locally grown tomatoes to can. I have some but not enough to can for the winter months.