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Thity-three quarts of green beans, 9 quarts of tomtoes, 7 pints, black eye peas, 8 pints of cucumber relish, 7 pints of kosher dill pickles and 2 gallons of sauerkraut fermenting in my utility room.Our stockpile shelves that have very sparse since we moved are now busting at the seams.
I have been on a canning bender.
I think I may have a “problem” because I just can’t seem to stop. I get even more excited when my own produce from my garden is what is going onto my shelves to be enjoyed this winter. I am filled with a sense of pride and comfort when I look at all of my hard work. And…I’m planning for even more next year. I have been studying seed websites and I have even started seeds for a fall garden. As soon as the heat eases up I will be turning over a spot for a large garden next spring just for canning. I might even give some new stuff a try too. Maybe artichokes…hmmm.
So, far I have spent $65 on produce and that was for 2 bushels of green beans and a half bushel of purple hull peas. The cabbage was from our garden and the ingredients for the pickles and cucumber relish were given to us for FREE! ( Thanks Lissy!)
So, what’s in the canning pipeline for the coming weeks? More tomatoes for sure. My tomato plants are busting with more tomatoes than we can eat in a month. And Mom wants some more beans for her. I’m hoping to get some spaghetti sauce and salsa put up as well. It’s also only a matter of time before I have squash coming out of my ears and I’m doing some research on what to do with all of that too. ( Suggestions anyone?)
I am pretty excited about (hopefully) harvesting some butternut squash and a few more heads of cabbage this fall. And then of course, next month will be harvest at the winery. So “busy” is a word that will certainly describe our whole family for the remainder of the summer. Maybe we can squeeze in a few lazy days at the creek with the kids.
Anyway, here is a recipe I want to share with you just in case you find yourself with 10 lbs of free cucumbers and a sack full of free peppers. Happy Canning everyone!!
P.S. I did a couple of posts two years ago on pressure canning. If you have a garden I urge you to give it a try!
- 8 cups finely chopped and peeled cucumbers seeded
- 8 cups of finely chopped and seeded bell peppers different colors are best
- 2 cups finely chopped celery
- 1 cup finely chopped onion
- 1/2 cup pickling salt
- 3 cups vinegar I used a combo of regular and white wine vinegar
- 2 1/4 cups sugar
- 3 T celery seed
- 3 T yellow mustard seed
- Combine all of the veggies and salt in a large bowl and let set in a cool place for 4 hours. Rinse, drain and set aside. ( I actually did this at night and put the relish mix in the fridge, then finished the process the next morning.
- Prepare your canning lids, rings and jars by sterilizing the jars ( either in the dishwasher or boiling water) and by bringing the rings and lids to a boil in water on the stove.
- In a large saucepan, combine vinegar, sugar, and seeds and bring to a boil over medium-high heat while stirring often. Add in the drained cucmber mix and return to a boil, stirring often. Reduce heat and boil gently until vegetables are heated through.
- Ladle the hot relish into the sterilized jars, leaving a 1/2 inch of headspace. Jiggle the jar or use a headspace adjuster to remove air bubbles. Wipe the rim and secure a lid and ring on top of each jar making sure to tighten well.
- Put jars in a water bath canner and completely cover with water. Bring to a boil and process for 1o minutes. Remove the jars with a jar lifter, cool and store.