Food preservation goals, 2011

Thought I’d write these down in a central location where a) I can find them and b) anyone interested can see them. Here’s what I’m planning to preserve this year, based on whether we needed more or less than what we’ve done in the past. The parenthetical note is how much raw produce we need to yield the desired finished quantity. Our household is two adults.

Canning:

  • Strawberry jam: 10-12 pt (= 15 quarts raw)
  • Raspberry jam: 10 pt (= 8 qt)
  • Plain tomatoes: 36 pt (~1 bushel = 53 lb)
  • Salsa: 12-15 qt (see this recipe)
  • Peaches – supplied this year by my lovely mom

Freezing:

  • Frozen corn: 12 qt bags @ 1.25lb/bag (= 6 doz ears)
  • Kale: 5 gallon bags @ 1.5 lb/bag (about 3 lugs of kale) – this is probably overkill, but it needed to be harvested

Root cellar and greenhouse:

  • 100 lb potatoes (we ran out last year in about March, and had stored 75 lb)
  • A dozen winter squashes (butternut and pink banana)
  • A dozen cabbages
  • 20 lb onions
  • 5-8 bulbs garlic
  • Greenhouse kale
  • Sweet potatoes (as per harvest)
  • 10 lb Rutabagas

Optional or may try this year:

  • Pickles, mostly for gifts and trade
  • Mixed veg kraut
  • 1-2 gallons cauliflower
  • Cider (sweet and/or hard)
  • Apples and/or apple pie filling

Don’t do any more:

  • Frozen green beans
  • Frozen broccoli
  • Root cellar beets (I like them, but 2 years running have composted most of them in the spring. Suggestions?)

Wow. Ok – when I write it out, it looks like so much. But all the root cellar stuff is basically “move stuff from garden or market to baskets in the basement”. Jam was done months ago – we did a flat of strawberries, and we had done so much raspberry last year, we didn’t need to make more. Kale is done. Tomatoes are done. Salsa will be done this week. Need to do 2 more ears of corn, which is about an hour of work.

How’s your pantry shaping up?

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10 Comments

  1. Ken said,

    September 3, 2011 at 6:59 pm

    Considerably lighter than last year, on account of there not being any apples this year, and not too many tomatoes so far. We’ve got a whole mess of pickled beans (about 12 quarts) and about 2 gallons of frozen beans and some frozen peppers. Thinking about buying some broccoli to freeze too. Some dried tomatoes (mostly for paste-powder). Haven’t canned any tomatoes and may try to do some of that next weekend. There should be some kraut in my future. I don’t eat tons of eat, but I can use it to trade for some things that I can’t do myself.

    Does your “don’t do any more frozen beans” mean you still have enough from last year or that you just don’t eat them? I’ve not done them much before (having not had a storage freezer until this year) but I’m looking forward to them for stir fries.

    • Emily said,

      September 3, 2011 at 8:16 pm

      I overcooked them last year, and they were pretty awful. Even the ones that were done well weren’t all that great. Better than canned, for sure, but I found myself nagging myself to eat them. Ditto on the broccoli and much of the cauliflower. I found I’d rather just have more fresh cabbage and kale than frozen brassicas.

  2. Anonymous said,

    September 4, 2011 at 9:19 am

    10# frozen blueberries, 8 qts frozen strawberries, 10 qts frozen rhubarb, and canned peaches. May do some tomatoes and salsa if I get motivated.

  3. Kate said,

    September 5, 2011 at 11:54 am

    Love the idea of preserving apple pie filling! I love apple pie, but often lose momentum when it comes to all the peeling, but if I just had to make a pie crust and had the filling ready to go, we’d probably have pie a lot more often!

  4. Jake said,

    September 8, 2011 at 5:31 pm

    good post, i really need to focus on winter storage of produce. next year!

    Re: Beets…do you have a juicer? I love beets and cook them often, pickle them, roast them, borscht them, harvard them, shred them raw for salads, put them in brownies, cupcakes, but lately i’ve been using then fairly often in juice with apples, and a bit of ginger, or spicy stems of diakon. Other than freezing and pickling a few, and a bag in the fridge if there’s room, i can’t store them over the winter. I need to buy them out of season, but they always are fairly affordable.

    Frozen berries – they are one of the few things that i really use out of season – i freeze them on trays and loose pack them in bags. Raspberries, Saskatoon Berries, Sour Cherries (pitted), plus sliced rhubarb. all free. I use frozen summer fruit often throughout the winter.

    A few bags of frozen green beans – i love green beans in thai curries, when it’s cold i love thai curry.

    So far 16 pints of assorted jams (cherry, saskatoon, rhubarb, strawberry), a couple of rhubarb/fig marmalade. 5 pints B&B pickles – essential with grilled cheese. Still to go: zucchini relish, plum jam, crabapple jelly, and a few quarts of pears. Apple sauce this weekend. I’m craving chokecherry jelly (the best) but haven’t had time to go foraging.

    Usually a bushel of potatoes. Onions/carrots/shallots for a couple of months. Lots of green tomatoes that ripen slowly into november. Any glut of red tomatoes are frozen whole for stews and sauce. Waiting for my first shipment of garlic to plant this fall.

    Only a couple of fresh cabbage this year, and no squash or pumpkins.

    Bunches of dried spearmint for a big jar of tea. A few herbs (sage, thyme, tarrogon, oregano).

  5. Ellen Klaus said,

    October 6, 2011 at 8:05 am

    I just joined your blog posts. Saw your comment on M. Frost’s pic of our farm in s.e. wisconsin, and like your blog! I’ve been reading Mike & Nancy Bubel’s book Root Cellaring and it inspired me to do some more planning in our basement for storage. Nothing fancy: just nets hanging onions and garlic, vented shelving for squash etc.

    So far we have about 80 lbs. onions, 60 garlic bulbs, 100+ lbs of potatoes and still harvesting, 20 each acorn and butternut squash (lots more stored for now in barn at our farm, but we’ll be donating much of that), 16 leeks in large tub with soil (we’ll try this….), 20 or so shallots, and lots of dried herbs. Our shelves are filled with lots of goodies that we’ve canned.

    • Emily said,

      October 6, 2011 at 5:22 pm

      Hi, Ellen! Nice to “meet” you! Sounds like a great haul you have ready to store.

      • Ellen Klaus said,

        October 6, 2011 at 7:06 pm

        Thanks, Emily. I see you freeze lots of kale. What do you do with it?
        I grew a considerable amount of Russian kale/purple kale, and mostly use it for pesto. It’s still growing powerfully – any other ideas?

        • Emily said,

          October 7, 2011 at 2:40 pm

          We put it in everything. Sausage, greens and rice. Egg, greens, and rice. Pozole. Beef stew. Stir fry. I’ll even put it in spaghetti, though my sweetie isn’t so crazy about that. Occasionally smoothies!


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