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Do you can w/a specific quantity in mind?

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Post  JustMe on 6/17/2012, 10:08 pm

Thanks! The apple vendor at our farmer's market often has a container of seconds.
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Post  Goosegirl on 6/18/2012, 8:03 am

There was a fruit stand just around the corner from my house in CA that was all seconds - cosmetic only and everything was much fresher than in the supermarkets. Miss that place!

GG
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Post  rowena___. on 6/18/2012, 10:26 am

oh yes, the blemished produce is good for things you're going to cut and chop anyway, like sauces and such. even for freezing, i'll use a blemished piece and just cut out the blemish. i won't throw food in the composter unless more than 70% of it is bad. the only time i try to use perfect foods are in the dehydrator, because essentially you are storing raw food that needs to be shelf stable, so i use first quality for that.
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Post  herblover on 6/19/2012, 9:04 am

@Debora Cadene wrote:
@rowena___. wrote:
herbs: a pint of each herb dried for our use, plus 5 pints of each herb in jelly or extract

Rowena....how many plants do you find it takes to get a pint of herbs, and if you don't mind me asking...what sort of herbs do you / can you dry? Right now all I have for herbs in my garden are sage (two plants..one in each square cause that's what the nursery suggested). thyme...two plants in one square, oregano 4 plants each in their own square and 8 plants of basil..with two plants in each of 4 squares.

Any and all help would be greatly appreciated...as I "happen" to have a few extra squares....and would be MORE THEN HAPPY to run to the nursery for more....heheheeheheheee.



Are your herbs new plants this season? If they do well they will easily overflow their allotted space. I have mine in the ground in mixed beds; my sage is a bush that readily self seeds, and the thyme and oregano are patches better than 1x3 feet. All are easily dried.
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Post  Debora Cadene on 6/19/2012, 2:43 pm

All my plants are new this month and still small. It looks like my oregano is starting to grow, but my thyme, sage and rosemary still look the same size as they cam in the pots. I have to treat all my plants as annuals, as my season is quite short, so any info on how many plants to get a good amount for the fall, is definetely appreciated.
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Post  rowena___. on 6/19/2012, 3:20 pm

if your herbs are in pots you can just bring them in for the winter. or if they are not in pots, toward the end of your growing season you can take cuttings or divide them and put them in pots to bring in.
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Post  RoOsTeR on 8/13/2012, 7:42 am

There's lots of great information in this thread, so I'm refreshing it Very Happy
I'm pretty excited to get more involved in storing and preserving my harvests. I'm sure I'm like most people and in the past, I've always taken what my family can realistically consume and given away the rest. Heck, there's nothing wrong with that and in fact it's fun sharing and trading what you harvest. There's also nothing wrong with keeping and preserving more of what you worked so hard for and enjoying it throughout the year. And like rowena said, she cans with "gifts" in mind. So you can still share that successful harvest Cool all year long.


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Post  ArmyWife on 8/13/2012, 8:08 am

Thanks for refreshing this! There's great information here and rowena is my hero now!

I taught myself how to can a few years ago and now even teach classes on how to pressure can meats and one for kids on how to make freezer jam. I give canned foods as gifts all the time and it's always a big hit. It's exciting to see that canning/preserving foods is making a comeback!

The property we just bought is the site of the original homestead in this valley. The old root celler is still here and in amazing shape! Our home inspector was blown away at how well it's held up over the years! Once I put a new door on and get the vents cleared out, it'll be ready to roll!

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Post  Ericka2385 on 8/13/2012, 7:54 pm

A question about the dehydrated vegetables...

How do you use some of them? I saw a lot of veggies on Rowena's list that I wouldn't think of dehydrating. I imagine they would be used in soups and sauces, some application with lots of liquid where the texture wouldn't be noticed.

Also, I had heard that frozen summer squash loses a lot of its texture and get mushy when thawed. However, summer squash is a favorite in my house, and I'd love a good way to preserve it for year round eating. Can anyone with experience with freezing summer squash please chime in.

Thank you
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Post  rowena___. on 8/14/2012, 12:16 pm

i use my rehydrated foods in various ways--just depends on what food we're talking about. i've used most of them in casseroles and soups, but i also use them to refresh the pickle jar, or as filler in a meatloaf. we also like to eat some of them as is--there is nothing tastier to me than a zucchini chip or a dried okra nugget. sometimes i just powder things--i do that with fruit peels for example, or the end-of-year squash--then i can use it to thicken a stew or add nutrition to some mac-n-cheese without tipping off the 8YO gourmand. Wink

a very easy soup it so put a handful of this and a handful of that, with a pinch of herbs and seasonings and a bit of powdered something, all into a thermos with some boiling broth, and by lunch it is a delicious, homemade soup with nothing in it but "ingredients".

my goal is a zero-waste kitchen, which has the added benefit of tremendously reducing my grocery budget but the added disadvantage of starving my composter.
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