Gleaning for Myself

It’s summer.  You know that by the heat, the holidays, and the abundance of fresh foods available at a really cheap price whether you purchase it at the grocery store or the farmer’s market.  In this day of ever-increasing prices,  it seems only smart to look back at the way our parents did things.  My parents and grandparents knew how to do whatever they wanted but spent less proportionally while doing it.  A big thanks for letting me observe and learn those ways.  It was sheer luck that I moved into a neighborhood where most people think the same way.

Unfortunately, the garden didn’t get done this year so I am doing container gardening with tomatoes.  However, when it was cold and nasty this winter, a plan was devised to put up either by canning or freezing all my favorite vegetables and fruits and getting myself set up so that this coming winter when it’s cold and snowy I can open a jar of summer and taste the difference.

So, it was this morning that after a trip to the grocery store that I opened my refrigerator to get milk only to find it stuffed with fruits and vegetables.  Once I felt awake enough to handle a knife,  I went right to work.  There was corn to be shucked, cleaned, and blanched followed by vacuum sealing and bam (sorry Emeril) it was in the freezer.  Next came asparagus which was at a phenomenal price followed by cauliflower.  Then, it was time to prepare the strawberries which are almost ready to be packaged now.

Every instinct tells me to go back before these prices disappear and stock up on more of the same and I probably will.  Vacuum sealing extends the life of frozen goods by not allowing freezer burn or ice collection in the food while retaining the freshness and flavor.  It’s a lot of work, but there is nothing hard about it and the results will speak for themselves.  So far, it is just the freezing that’s being done.  When there is a flush of tomatoes and such, the canning will begin.  My larder will be stocked with items that I have made without any chemicals or preservatives.  It can be prepared according to my dietary needs and the taste—-oh, yeah, that’s the best.  Thanks, Mom.

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4 Responses to Gleaning for Myself

  1. Jeanette Spencer says:

    My mother was great at canning and freezing goods from the garden so we could enjoy them all year long. I remember being well liked on the Kent campus for having home canned vegetables and fruits. I had a roomate that would eat the green beans and corn right out of the jar. I realize now how hard she worked. I wish I could put up just half as much as she did. I am working on it.

    • cwurschmidt says:

      You know that Mama Nettles taught your Mom and mine how to cook can and freeze. Emma says that it was different for her and I can see that. Truth to tell, I don\’t particularly like doing all the prep work, but,boy, do I love the results. Everything tastes so much better than anything you can possibly buy in a store. Like for you, time is the biggest problem. You have to plan it and teach Jeana how to do all this stuff.

  2. Doris says:

    Love your expression "… open a jar of summer …"

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