A Fine Mess I’m In

Pole beans, string beans, green beans so many names for  one type of bean.  Undeniably, they are a great food and good for you, but right now, I don’t want to look at another green bean.  It all started this morning when I arrived at the Farmer’s Market.  It’s small, but nice with flowers and foods galore.  One farmer taught botany for 30+ years at a nearby college while others were always farmers.  Some were a quasi-farmer like the man and his family who sells eggs and really good honey.  He blends the spun honey with different flavors and it is a little bit of heaven on a mini-spoon.

So it was that by mid-morning I was deep into processing six pounds of green bean having already located all my canning utensils, pressure canner, and unpacked the jars and lids.  Everything went into the dishwasher and it was started.  Even the Ball (this company makes the jars) Blue Book of Preserving guide says it’s a good way to sterilize everything.  The moment had arrived to start working on the beans themselves.

There I sat on the couch with a newspaper sheet across my lap to hold all the trash from preparing the beans which waited in a bag to my left.  On the right, was my grandmother’s old dishwashing pan for which there are more uses than you can imagine.  As I took the ends and strings off, it was easy to imagine my mother and grandmother sitting either in the kitchen or front porch doing the same thing while chatting away.  I was a young thing then, and enjoyed hearing them chatter while being my own busy self.  I have that video in my memory bank.  Thinking of it certainly made the time go faster.

Once, the beans were de-stringed and snapped it was time to blanch them and then, put them in the sterile jars and from there, into the canner for its designated cook time.  They come out still cooking and as they cool, you listen for the ping saying they are sealed and ready to be put away.  So much work, so much fun, such good taste as the sun is setting on another day.  I’ll pull them out in November and remember.

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6 Responses to A Fine Mess I’m In

  1. Michele says:

    I'm coming to your house this winter!! My mom used to freeze and can her garden every summer and your post brought back all kinds of memories. I have never attempted to do the same but you are inspiring me to give it a try this year.

  2. cwurschmidt says:

    Come on over. It's a lot of work, but I love the results. I've done asparagus, cauliflower, strawberries, blueberries, green beans, and peaches so far. Still to do are tomatoes and soups. I'm feasting this winter. BTW, I bought meat this weekend and seal it up in portions. I won't buy meat again for months. Tried fish as well. Surely, it works the same.

  3. Doris says:

    Though I have no canning experience (or other domestic inclinations), your post struck a nostalgic chord.

  4. Leo says:

    You are quite the domestic goddess right now, Mom. I am glad you are enjoying getting back into some of these things you used to do. It is nice that you are now afforded the time to be able to have some of these things restored.

  5. Doris says:

    I can picture you and Michele chatting over snapped beans while Asher and Bechan play nearby, forming their own little video memories to recall 60 or 70 years later.

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