Wednesday, August 31, 2011

What's for Breakfast :o)

Tomato with Pesto and Cheese :o)
This isn't what I really wanted for breakfast, but I was too tired (or lazy) to get into fixing anything that caused me to do too much work..Cecil didn't want anything but Bran flakes this morning and that was fine with me. I put away about a quart of 
tomatoes in the freezer yesterday and decided to use this one to try out the Pesto I made the other day and add some Mozzarella cheese to it and give it a broil.. it wasn't bad as far as taste..(I needed to add a little salt for my taste). I was given a recipe for a "Tomato Pie" and thought I'd concoct something quick out of it..and this dish is what I came up with :o) Not bad for a quickie. Nothing else happening special at Gingerbreadshouse today, I'm still tired and need to rest... unless something just pops up :o) UPDATE: Sorry to Daisy, and Mrs. Pickles, your comment were deleted by mistake..

Monday, August 29, 2011

Sauerkraut canned

This morning I'm glad that this job is done! It will be finished once I wipe off the rest of the jars and label them..
If you notice there are five jars that look a little green, those were the ones that I did in the 1/2 gallon jars, I thought that might be an easier way to do them, they still had to be "canned", because I didn't wish to store that much in the fridge. the other jars were done in the crock..I gave them a taste before I put them in the pot and jars and Boy! that's some good tasting stuff!..I now see what all the fuss is about making Sauerkraut :o)...I thought the jar method was too confusing...but it's really not, in fact it was easier to get the "crud" off with my little gravy ladle spoon. You can see the ones from the crock look a different color, that's the one I tasted and it was good. Time will tell me which way I'll go next time...We like to put a Nathan's frank on a roll with sauerkraut and hot peppers, and I like that Pork and sauerkraut dish I just started making..Cecil likes it all. I did like Mrs Pickles "worked my ass off", so now I'm going to just sit on my face :o)

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Blueberry Cobble for a stormy weekend!

Today is a lazy kind of day waiting to see and hear from the T.V. what Irene has done to the East coast in her fury.  Meanwhile, we put things away from danger as best we could for the time being..
Still have to get the laundry done, (praying we don't lose electricity, still have to cook a meal, and glad that the  weather surroundings are allowing me to do so. In the midst of it I decided to make a Blueberry Cobbler, when it's cooler the proof will be in the taste :o) These were some of the berries we picked at a farm not more than five minutes away from our home :o) . I'm smiles all over and hope to do the same next year. I hope people take the precautions that are being broadcasted  for their own benefits. That's my weekend. Waiting to hear from one that they are safe.UPDATE: Heard from one that they are safe..I don't care how old they get, they are still your "kids", and you never stop worrying about them.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Hallelujah, they have risen!

I thought some of you would like to see these little seedlings.. do a close up to see those little seedlings good :o) Aren't they the cutest  things :o)...Thanks again 
Mr. H. they were some real healthy ones. :o)
now I'm wondering if I should do the Kale the same way...this way it's like I have some control of where and how they are grown in the ground...Today we picked up some cow manure (in the bags, wish it were the real stuff , best we could do for now). and Lime to get the boxes and gardens ready 
for the fall plantings..

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

This is the BESTEST Bowl of Tomato Soup EVER! :o)

I just couldn't resist showing you this "First"
bowl of Tomato Soup made "my way" that was breakfast this morning with Rye toast.I was so excited I forgot to show the toast too :o( ... Let me tell you Campbell's has nothing on me. :o)  This was the best bowl of Tomato soup I've ever had. Of course I didn't measure out my spices, I just went with the "Mommy flow" :o)  you know what that is, we just think about adding this or that to the pot and it isn't repeated the next time :o). I can guarantee that this won't be the last time I attempt making my own Tomato Soup my way. Remember the pint size jars I just put time it will be quarts..Cecil was as excited as I was and got a second helping real quick ( I'm a slower eater). ..I may have an update later today.. I don't know what I'll get myself involved in...but this bowl of soup got me so excited I wanted to share.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Today wasn't a total loss as far as growing Habanero Peppers...mine didn't grow at all :o(  thank goodness my Latin market always has them...Cecil picked up a pound of them for me at the market and I promptly ground half of them up with my Homegrown garlic :o)  ( had to add that in, at least I had something homegrown to brag about). To make my "Habanero and Garlic Paste".. I use it in my "Spaghetti Medley" and other dishes I want to taste some heat :o) That jar you see is holding a Years supply  (I think).Update: 
Jody's request,
Jody..first thing..wear some plastic gloves, wash your peppers,take off the stem, cut them to take out the seeds etc, peel your garlic. use  equal amount of garlic to peppers grind finely in food processor , use a little olive oil until it's like a paste.. you then will only need about 1/4 tsp  for 1-2 quart dishes.. using it will determine how much you will need. It gets stronger with age :o)

I managed to get my pots filled yesterday with my Rutabaga Seeds (thanks Mr H. ;o) We are so overjoyed to have so many.. I expect them to come up within 7-10 days..I just might plant more of them..but we need room for the kale, collards, and Broccoli
Rabe.  We still have the Side garden and the P's garden...and soon the Eggplant will have to be taken up..Now I'm afraid to let that still grow..least something take it.. I'm still canning tomato sauce or soups ...I've added my spices to the tomatoes and cooked them to a point where I can use the sieve to take out the skins, seeds and pieces of spices now I can use the tomatoes any way I like. (After I cook it down a bit ) Then If I add some cream, it will be a delicious soup. Or I can add it to some Italian Sausages with onions and peppers on a hero :o)  Or chill it and use it as a Tomato juice breakfast with toast. So many ways to use tomatoes. :o)  I still have too many in the freezer..little by little I'll get it done..

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Yesterday was a slow day for me..I just sat in my "chair bed" (giving the old knee a rest)
In the meantime I had Rutabaga seeds on my mind..I know it takes at least 7-10 days to get germination going..and fall would be here before I knew I sat there and made some paper cups :o)...First Cousin visited today and I taught her how to make them too. :o)  You would think I gave her a million dollars :o)  Things like this are far from First Cousins  imagination , she is so stunned at how simple it is and for what it's intended. The kraut is coming along nicely (stinking up a little , and making a gookie mess inside the bottle and crock pot. I've watched a few video's on the internet and it took me out to see a woman stomping  kraut in her bare feet...Women of old did the best they could and taught their we have advanced...and use food processors to cut finely, and weights in our crocks. I'm glad of that...once I put my foot in it..we'd have to throw it out :o)...Then again maybe it would be so good I'd get rich for the recipe and then I wouldn't nave to make my own kraut and then.....I think I need a nap!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Is it Fall yet? it seems Summer is not over

This is the Sweet Potato Patch  (purple and yellow sweet potatoes).  I have to give some credit to E.G. he's the one that put the fire under my heels to get it going..They are doing pretty good thus far..Cecil doesn't like putting the hay, but I insist on it ..I think it keeps the ground from drying out much..he's getting better about it, I think he thinks the snakes love to hide in it.

I planted some Boc choy, and it's just beginning to catch on..I don't know if it will be big enough to do anything with but I'll just let it keep on growing..the Eggplant was a surprise..I didn't think much about it and it seems it finally took off and we have harvested a couple of small ones..we are going to see if the others will get any larger.

A lot of work went into this garden, the yield this season wasn't too great, I think it was just too darn hot and dry.. no rain and very hot was hard for us to survive. 
Let's give this Lone Cantaloupe some credit..I don't remember  if it's one we planted or the Birds brought the seed  (maybe from E,G.'s garden :o)..So far she is doing nicely in just a two foot space..she may have it..UPDATE:  Yesterday we examined the cantaloupe and it looked like something or the wind had rolled it over. We decided to let it grow just one more day. Wrong! The something came back and took it away, so we will never know what kind of cantaloupe it was or how it tasted :o(  Sometimes you need to listen to yourself ..and act then..for us later was too late. :o(
You'd have to do a close up to see the Persimmons growing on the tree..i'm always surprised in the fall when everything else is brown and leaves gone ..the Persimmons ripen. I wish I had got of them, the fruit gets eaten so quickly..I still have some pulp in the freezer to make that cake :o(.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Cecil decided to remove the "Crappy Dirt" out of one box, and spread it around the garden and side gardens  :o)  he is going to add some lime and get those roots out..before we plant anything inside this box again.The Tomatoes have been removed and the Peppers were left to see if they even gave a hint of surviving ...We expect some rain, and it seems Rain cures it all ...if they don't perk up , they too will be tossed...My tomatoes didn't do as well as I expected from our efforts but at least we got something.        

We are now going to call this side of the yard the P. Side  ( stands for Peach, Persimmon and Pears :o) We planted Potatoes there in the Spring and didn't get back as much as we planted...This time we will add some fertilizer etc. and hopefully it will do a better job of producing..We aren't sure what we will plant there for the seems you plan spots for this or that, "The Almost an Acre" kinda fills up :o) This week I'm glad I didn't have to tend to any chickens..I'm plum worn out a bit..Ohiofarmgirl has taken to raising a little biddy for me's the cutest of the group :o)         


Cecil taking a well deserved "break" . After each job he says "after this I'm going to stop"  it seemed "after this" didn't get there soon enough. Maybe it's those Grits,Neese's sausage, cheese and veggie omelet I made him for breakfast. (I felt guilty for being asleep while he was up and working). If it's true that getting to a man's heart is through his stomach, I'm batting a hundred :o). If he were rich I'd be shopping about now :o)

Update:  Keeping Cecil happy! Add some garden grown greens, steak with gravy to yesterdsy's corn bread and Sweet Potato fluff :o)

Monday, August 15, 2011

How I took it Easy today

Today I wakened, tired and with less energy than a wet mop! I decided I'd take it easy and just plop in my chair bed and take it easy and drink as many Zero's as I pleased.
Cecil had gone to the Ministry to give his services and I didn't have to worry about fixing breakfast for either of us.. So I sat and sat and sat! TV didn't have anything special to watch...except my garden and food shows..and they weren't doing any thing special to me..I felt like sometimes they just give you anything, maybe they get tired too.. My day perked up when the mailman came..I found an envelope from one of my special bloggers that had some beautiful seeds in it for me Thanks Mr. H. :o) and that really perked me up!  
After resting a bit more  I decided I might need something that I wasn't getting , maybe I needed some Corn Bread with some onions, Jalapeno peppers and corn in it..:o) That ought to perk anybody up...wish I had some Buttermilk..that would have been all I needed..for breakfast, lunch or dinner..I had some Mylar Spinach loaded with butter..that spinach has a different twist ..taste like it has a little okra in it..with just a little pat of butter it's delicious. I didn't feel like a lot of cooking , you know how it is. Once you get started and you smell some foods it makes you think of others...
I had a closet full of canned Sweet Potato's that I thought about and knew I needed to get  a move on using them because before I knew it , fall would be here and I'd be looking to put up those sweet potatoes that E.G. got me all fired up to do..they are coming along nicely and I'm hoping to have a good crop..Hope they aren't a disappointment like my other potatoes..they didn't fair well at all. So I made a Sweet Potato Fluff :o) Cecil will be happy about that.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Making Basil Pesto Day

It takes  quite a few Basil leaves to make a good amount of Pesto! That white pan was full (8 cups) Once it's made you can nibble on it often..Today I was determined to make 2 ice Cube trays full. Cecil isn't crazy about it..and I've just started taking more of  a liking to it spread on top of a tomato or spread on the bread and making a tomato sandwich with it :o).
It's pretty easy to root and grow, first time I tried to grow it , It was a failure..then I moved it into my box and it took off..(that first dirt I bought was crap, anyhow come Spring I'm going to devote more space for it.
and hopefully keep it going.I ended up with two nice trays full of that good and tasty stuff..and I've run out of tomatoes ;o( They are all in jars..a few still need to ripen on the window I still have a chance to make another sandwich without buying tomatoes from the store.:o).
That's about all I did today..I'm still tired from canning and making Pear Butter. We have had it on ice cream and it's pretty good that way too. :o)

Thursday, August 11, 2011

All the fuss about this cord! it makes you tired..but I've got good news to report...$1.06 saved the day for now..that's all a roll of Vinyl electrical tape cost and about 1 hr of my time to wind it on the cord...Geez, when I started I thought just a few spots, ugh! it ended up being the whole cord that was frayed and fraying all over..E.G. offered to eliminate my stress, but I'm still canning ( isn't that wonderful to have something to can :o) and couldn't do without the Champion cord as yet!  
This "Champion" has been a champion for me ..all these years I've had her ..since Jan.1973  ...too bad the company can't replace the's one that doesn't have the ground ( that's the one with  a prong sticking out besides the two holes). Do a close up and you will see the date on the receipt..and what I paid for it then :o) it's almost tripled. I did good to wrap the cord ...:o) that's being real fugal. ( Lucky for Cecil, I was ready to buy a new one :o). Once you have one, you won't be without it.

By the way..had a Dr's appointment today, and the Dr was smiling at the good results I have with my B/S a lost a  couple of pounds :o). (the harvesting worked the skin off me :o)  

Update: The day ended up being a good one, even though the car wouldn't start this morning :o(  Two neighbors to the rescue then on to the Dr's ...We hadn't moved the car in two days ..hope that's the only reason..Cecil is going to have the battery checked to make sure..(Always something )

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Champion Juicer Detachable Motor Cord Needed.

Just in case you see this somewhere on the internet or in one of your cluttered drawers :o) let me know about it. One company (Gourmet Depot) claims to have it on backorder..(that could take more months than I want them to hold my money). The company that made my Champion claims it is now not available :o(...also anything before 1975 mine was bought 1973 :o(   There are a lot of parts still available on EBAY, just not the detachable cord. I'll just do as Daisy suggested..wrap the frayed parts with electrical tape, until I can do better...

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Pears and Tomato Preserving

Its nice to save old pickle jars, especially when they are made of glass. I was glad to have saved  this one for the Dried Pears ..I tell you when they say "there is more ways to skin a cat"  I tell you "There are more ways to save a Pear" than I can even think of :o)..That includes giving some to neighbors.  Before I took the time to dry these this year..I tried re-hydrating and making a cobbler out of some from last year...They weren't bad at all
I could have used more liquid in my cooking them as a cobbler, I was afraid to get the cobbler "watery". Next time, I'll do better although there was none left ( Cecil saw to that :o). I've had enough this year of putting away Pears.. I ended up doing pretty good with the tomatoes too. A neighbor shared some of hers with me for my Pears :o)..and I made some Tomato sauce/soup  and that's how I'm going to label them.  We had some of it this morning  with sausage and biscuits for breakfast;; I tell you that soup was on the money..Not at all like the soup you buy in the can, mine was way better and I know what I put in mine :o) I love having homemade Tomato soup and Chicken soup, it perks me right up. I also like to have some Tea in the afternoon..and just
think I've got a big jar of "Mullein" to relax
me..I've been on a roll over here :o)

Monday, August 8, 2011

This is my Sunday Harvest :o)

Here are my jars of "Pear Butter" < that's some good tasting stuff :o) I found a nice recipe on the internet and I'm glad I did.
It has orange zest , orange juice and nutmeg in it makes it a nice flavor..I can see where next years Pears will be making more of it. Cecil had a taste and liked it right away. I didn't have to peel the pears for the Pear Butter I just put them (skin and core) into the "Champion" and she masticates it (think thats the right word. :o)  I've posted the Champion before, here she is again.:o)  There are two bowls under her ..the one on the left holds the "mashed waste" the one on the right holds the juice/puree of whatever your using ..see the wooden thingy at the top, that's the masher to press whatever your doing. As you work, you take the "waste" and put it back into the masher part and it will continue to take all the pulp and juice from the ingredients...for my tomatoes, I put the tomato quarters (cut enough to fit the hole) and the onions, some cuban oregano,parsley and green peppers, keep putting them back until they are just about dry
Then l you cook whatever your making and proceed with the canning. This Champion is very old, they are still selling them and It's more commercial, but for speed and just plain old workhorse I wouldn't trade it. I need a new cord and need to replenish parts.  They cost double today, but well worth it.

Broken down for cleaning, you can see the two screens (one blank, one screened for getting just pulp and juice) see the item on the left next to the bowls, that's the one that masticates the food..on it's side you see the teeth ( do a close up) You might even see my frayed dangerous cord :o(  Don't laugh, if you did the work this baby has done and was as old, you'd be frayed too :o).
I did my tomatoes so I could cook and can  them in the morning.. A good nights rest is what I need now..

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Pears all accounted for :o)just one bag left

Yesterday Cecil and I worked hard and heavy whew! What a job we did.. You see the table is now empty of pears except one bag that a neighbor wasn't home.
This years Pear yield was terrific and we didn't start too soon, it seemed they started ripening all at once..  Our total yield went something like this..
29 quart bags with 1 1/2 lbs each = 53 1/2 lbs for small cobblers..
 Plus 6 bags about 5 lbs each to neighbors = about 30 lbs.  Total about 83 1/2 lbs  WOW  Those two Dwarf Pear Trees did a wonderful job this year...We are so grateful. I have some Pears in the dryer  that I haven't accounted for yet.  I also have ground Pears in the fridge to finish making "Pear Butter" today.  I tried the old strainer for the pear butter , but it was too I pulled out the "Champion" < she worked her motor hot for me...This year I'm going to replace all the things that baby needs..she is worth her weight in gold and then some...All I needed with her was to wash the pears and stick it in her top...she chewed it up like nothing flat. I had to re-arrange things a bit to get the pears into the large can see the Pears on the Left side and there are more behind them..I wasn't going to take them out just to take a picture..and yesterday I was too busy trying to get them in before picture taking.The new little freezer is already stuffed .. I have to do some organizing. First cousin came to help, but she was already 
tired from her own labors, so I gave her an easy task this time. She was fascinated with "Champion" and "Apple (Pear, Potato) Peeler" and got pretty good operating it :o) To her it was fun, and cool. Those hands weren't used to those doings.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Another Task done before the Pears

You can't tell by this picture  how fine the strainer on the left is...I have had these for many many years! Just didn't find the heart to part with them..In moving to NC, I either misplaced or gave away the stand for that big one (on the left) and hadn't been able to use it and kept promising I'd buy the stand for there is no need too..I have a 12 gallon pot that it sits on nicely...and I used that yesterday to do my tomato's with.. I had removed the tomato's (hot water bath,then dipped in ice water). but didn't bother taking out the seeds, just started cooking it once my onions and peppers were sauted..of course I added all the spices I have been growing..Thyme, Cuban Oregano, Parsley, green peppers,onions then salt and pepper. I let it cook for a few hours...then decided I didn't like the looks for tomato sauce  (there were too many little lumps, and I wanted it smoother) So I decided to try the old strainers...(didn't feel like messing with the "Champion" , I could have used it to remove skin , seeds, and anything else not desirable..but I was too lazy to get it and Cecil was busy running with chores. (it's a heavy little sucker), besides I need to order a few new parts for it.
As you can see, I was able to get 8 pints of beautiful strained tomato sauce!  In fact I got 8 and 1/2 pints..the 1/2 pint I decided to have this morning with breakfast to see if
it could be used also as Tomato Soup :o), I used milk, didn't think to use cream until it was too late :o(  it was good and tasty..Now I'm wondering if I made Tomato soup :o) I've never found a tomato sauce looking as good and fine as mine :o)...You never know how and what's in their cans that you buy. Maybe sometime today , I'll start working on the Pears ...

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Keifer Pears on the March

 Just in case your wondering what I'm doing
in the next few days ( or week)  I'll be sweating it out peeling and freezing and maybe making preserves...First Cousin had the desire to "help me" when it was time..
I sure hope she isn't hands could use the help...even with the peeler my hands get sore and bruised (Plavix causes stress marks).  When we planted our Pear Trees we were hoping that we would have enough to make preserves...with the diabetes we have to be more careful of that cobblers began to take over the Pears.. I don't know
what other recipes I can use to make good use of the Pears.. Maybe someone would like to make an exchange , in the old days we called it barter...Pears for Pecans :o) Pears for Figs, Pears for Peaches..  This is canning season and I know some of us are being overwhelmed with the Harvest.. Thank God for the harvest...especially when the table runneth over...(there are still more on the tree, the deer started raiding, so we made sure we got the most...they will continue to ripen as they me more tome to work with them..
Harris Teeter had milk on sale today and I made some cheese with one bottle and I'll made the other in the morning...I'm a little tired, after all I'm almost :o) as old as Annie's Granny and she doesn't know when to stop working.

I made some cheese with Jalapeno peppers tonight, just to see how it would taste (I'm looking for a Jack cheese recipe)..I'll make more plain Mozzarella  cheese in the morning. I even have some tomato's to put away...Yep! it's canning season and no time to vacation..