Thursday, August 30, 2012

Thursday's Kitchen Cupboard..................8/30/2012

With all the produce coming in, the days have been long. I think I'm keeping up pretty well considering. This past week I have canned Tomatoes and Tomato Puree almost daily. I also made some meals and froze them.

This is the Zucchini & Tomato Bake that Dave posted a few weeks ago here
We just love it! I have made several and froze them for use over the winter!! I only made one adjustment to his recipe. I sprinkled some seasoned breadcrumbs in between the layers.

Here are a couple of the Tomato Bakes packaged and ready for the freezer.
I also made several Eggplant Parmigiana and froze them too. They are the thicker packages at the bottom of the pile.

Another time consuming canning project was making the tomato salsa, recipe here. I stayed up late on Tuesday evening and made 8 pints. That's enough to get ME through the year! I will also make some Green Tomato Salsa.

Some other things that were frozen this week were Chinese Red Noodle Beans and Asparagus Beans. I think we have enough of the Chinese Beans frozen. But, we can definitely use some more Asparagus Beans in the freezer.

What's been going in or out of your Kitchen Cupboard lately???

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Harvest Monday..............8/26/2012

Just when you think you have the fruit flies under control in the kitchen. You go to the plots to do a little harvesting and..........well

you get this......

and this.....

and this.....

and these....

and of course more Chinese Red Noodle Beans....

and a ton of tomatoes.....

and at the home garden I got these.

The tomato plants at the plots are still hanging in there. They don't look too good. But, I am picking every good tomato and semi-ripe one I can find. Not only are many of the plants diseased, there are also some issues with nibbling. I suspect tomato hornworms, although I have not seen any.

I realized today that my harvest spreadsheet was not calculating my year to date totals correctly. I fixed it and I have harvested a little more then I previously thought.

Total weighed harvests: 51.8 lbs.
     Asparagus Red Seed - 5.95 oz
     Chinese Red Noodle - 23.5 oz.
Cuccumbers - 9.25 oz.
     Black Beauty - 22.95 oz.
     Lunga Violetta Di Firenze - 22.1 oz.
     Hot & Spice - 8.05 oz.
     Sweet - 24.45
Tomatoes - 712.55 oz. 44.53 lbs

Hop on over to Daphne's Dandelions, our host of Harvest Monday to see what's going on in Veggie Gardens around the Globe!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Thursday's Kitchen Cupboard................8/23/2012

I was going to do a post on what has been preserved this past week. You all can imagine all the canning and freezing that has been going on around here! But, when I came home from work on Tuesday evening, "The Italian" had a nice surprise for me!! He had gotten home a few hours earlier and decided to make a nice summer adult drink for us!

He was making Watermelon Martinis!!!

Oh boy....were they ever good! 
The watermelon was perfect and sweet and so was "The Italian's" welcome home!

The martini was easy to make. He cut up some watermelon, blended it with the immersion blender, added vodka, a club soda float and a slice of sweet watermelon!

After we had two martinis each, he decided to make a Martini just for Granny! Since "The Italian" and Granny both like their tomato sandwiches with Miracle Whip instead of mayonnaise. 

Yep, he made a Tomato & Miracle Whip Martini!!

I was hesitant at first....but, it tasted just like a tomato sandwich!!! All it needed was a nice slice of crusty bread!! So, what do you think we should call it????

What's been going in or out of your Kitchen Cupboard lately???

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Harvest Monday................08/20/2012

Since "The Italian" is out of town for a few days, Sophia spent the whole weekend with me. We sure did have a busy weekend!! First, we spent all day Saturday out and about. We shopped, which I really hate. But, it had to be done. I needed some pants for work and of course Sophia needed some things too. Just like any teenager does! We had a great day and then took our neighbor out for dinner. It was the girls night out!

Sunday was a full day of gardening. Before we left for the plots, I checked the two savoy cabbage plants at the home garden I really hadn't looked at them in weeks.

The cabbage on the left is a normal size head of Savoy Cabbage.
The one on the right is the Monster Head....That baby weighed almost 7 lbs!! I really didn't think Savoy cabbage could get that big!

After the great Cabbage Harvest we set off for the plots. That place was like a jungle! Sophia was a big help. She pulled weeds, took a ton of stuff to the compost and of course took a nice nap under the umbrella! When the day was done we had a nice neat garden and a full trunk of produce!

And there was some in the back seat too!

If you ever wondered what 17+ lbs of celery looks like.....
It looks like this!!! Yes, we harvest 17.32 lbs of celery! 
There is no way we need all this celery plus the nearly 4 lbs that was harvest in July. So, Sophia took a couple of bunches and I gave 3 bunches to my mother.There's also some more celery growing in the home garden.

We harvested two nice Sugar Baby Watermelons. 
They weighed in at 15.55 lbs for the two.

We also harvested these two fine beauties.
My first time growing Butternut Squash. These guys weighed in at a little over 10 lbs.

The remaining cabbage at the plots was harvested.
One Savoy, Two each of Tet Noire and Red Acre.
These guys were on the small side.....but, I think we are good in the cabbage department for the year!

The Chinese Red Noodle Beans are really doing well!!
I harvested 4.675 lbs. of them this week alone!

There were also Eggplants, Tomatoes and Peppers harvested this week.

Not pictured are the potatoes I dug last week and didn't get around to weighing until Saturday. 
All in all it we had a great week of harvests!!

Total weighed harvests: 135.34 lbs!!

     Dean's Purple Pole Snap - 7.85 oz.
     Chinese Red Noodle - 74.8 oz. 
     Asparagus Red Seed - 8.1 oz
     Chiefton Savoy - 170.9 oz.
     Red Acre - 61.35 oz.
     Tet Noire - 64,5 oz.
Celery - 277.15 oz.
Eggplant - 42.75 oz.
     Hot & Spice - 15.3 oz
     Sweet - 24.7 oz
     Yukon Gold - 61 oz
     Purple Viking - 92.3 oz.
     Kennebec - 18.55 oz.
     Red Pontiac - 193.25 oz.
Squash, Butternut - 162 oz.
Tomatoes - 599.75 oz
Watermelon Sugar Baby- 248.85 oz.
Zucchini - 17.6 oz.

Hop on over to Daphne's Dandelions, our host of Harvest Monday and see what's going on in gardens around the globe!!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Thursday's Kitchen Cupboard.........8/16/2012

With all of the harvesting going on around here and my 11-12 hour days away for work, it's been quite a task keeping up on the preserving! To top things off, last weekend we froze corn. My mother orders corn from a local farm and picks it up within minutes of it being harvested. She showed up on Saturday morning with 150 ears of beautiful sweet corn to be processed!

They pick the corn at 8:30 in the morning. So, Sophia was here at 9 to help me get set-up outside. First, we husked the corn on the round table on the deck. Next we set-up for the Big Sweet Corn Processing.

The Corn was blanched in this pot on a propane burner on the upper porch.

Next, it was cooled in ice water

Then the kernels were removed from the cob. 

We had a great set-up and nice weather! The whole process took us about 3 hours. My mother put her corn in freezer boxes with plastic bags inside. She had those boxes for years. My corn was put on trays, flash frozen and the next day vacuumed sealed in bags. I think we will have enough corn for quite some time! 

The worst part was cleaning up after we were done. The corn sticks to everything like cement. It's definitely not a job to do in the house.

I also froze some Chinese Red Noodle Beans this past week......

and some Celery.

Of course tomatoes were canned this week as well! I hope you're all keeping up with preserving your harvests!!

What's been going in or out of your Kitchen Cupboard Lately???

Monday, August 13, 2012

Harvest Monday...................08/13/2012

I've been very busy this past week preserving the harvest. I didn't take a lot of pics again....but, here's a little of what came out of the garden. The tomato pics aren't very good. 

Speaking of tomatoes, disease has come to the community garden. Although my plants look much much better then most over there. I'm not sure how much I will get out of them. To date, I have only harvested about 150 lbs. of tomatoes. We need a minimum of 300 lbs to get close to we need for the year. I thought last year was a bad tomato year with 320 lbs.We shall see how things go this next week.

The Chinese Red Noodle beans are going to town!

Sophia has been helping me all weekend and made this cute picture of our harvest from Sunday evening. She has been such a big help....wait until you see Thursday's Kitchen Cupboard!! 

Total weighed harvest for the week:60.76 lbs.

     Dean's Purple Pole - 37.25 oz
     Chinese Red Noodle - 27.4 oz
     Asparagus Red Seed - 4.75
Cucmbers-59.15 oz
Eggplant- 18.75 oz
Peppers- 16.9 oz
Tomatoes- 50.5 lbs

Hop on over to Daphne's Dandelions, our host of Harvest Monday to see what's going on in gardens around the globe!!!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Thursday's Kitchen Cupboard & More!.....08/09/2012

Today is not only Thursday's Kitchen Cupboard, it's also our 4th Wedding Anniversary! For those of you who have been following this blog for awhile, you may remember this post. For those of you who haven't, take a look at our big day!

Now on to Thursday's Kitchen Cupboard. As you can imagine, there's been a lot of canning going on around here this past week. Here is some of what's been canned this week.

Tomato Puree

Eggplant Caponata

I've been canning tomatoes or tomato puree almost every day.

Some canned goods all cleaned up and ready to be stored the cupboard

"The Italian" made the most amazing pizza Tuesday night for dinner. The pizza had a layer of garlic with oil, next a layer of cheese and topped with tomatoes and olives. I think it was the best pizza he ever made.

What's been going in or out of you Kitchen Cupboard lately???

Monday, August 6, 2012

Harvest Monday.....................08/06/2012

We finally had a good week of harvests!!! The tomatoes are starting to come in!! I also harvested eggplant, cabbage, beans, zucchini and some peppers. I am happy that the cucumbers have slowed down a bit since most of the pickles and relish have been made and canned.

I wasn't very good at taking pics of the harvests. But, here's an idea of what my kitchen has been looking like lately.

This is the kitchen island before I started canning and chopping.

I think I need more room!

Most of Sunday's tomato harvest.

We just love these Chinese Red Noodle Beans!

I hope you're having some great harvests too!!

Harvest Total: 92.375 lbs
     Dean's Purple Pole Beans- 9.5 oz
     Chinese Red Noodle- 17.8 oz
Cabbage - Savoy- 4.5 lbs
Cucumbers - Muncher Burpless - 2.9 lbs
Eggplant -3.6 lbs 
     Hot & Spice - 2.9 lbs
     Sweet - 15.5 oz
Tomatoes - 69.3 lbs.
Zucchini - 6.5 lbs

Hop on over to Daphne's Dandelions, our host of Harvest Monday, to see what's going on in gardens around the globe!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Thursday's Kitchen Cupboard............08/02/2012

This past weekend I finished canning most of our pickles & relish for the year. I made another batch of Bread & Butter Pickles and a double batch of Sweet Pickle Relish for "The Italian". The only pickles that are left to make are some Dill Refrigerator Pickles.

Not the best pic...there was no room in the kitchen for a photo op!

I also chopped and froze the celery that I harvested last week. I was planning to make Eggplant Caponata. But due to a broken pair of eye glasses and lack of nice clothes to wear for work. I spent most of the day on Saturday running around. Ughh..

Tuesday I went to the plots after work and harvested 30 lbs. of tomatoes!! Yippee!!! They are finally coming in!

Since we now have tomatoes, I'm starting to make the Tomato Puree.

What's been going in or out of your Kitchen Cupboard lately????