Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Canning Shenanigans...Canninagans!

Hello! I had a bunch of computer work to do today, and photos that needed to be uploaded, so I thought I would take a second to write here as well.
Things are going good here. Still no word on our car - our mechanic has narrowed it down to some timing problem inside the engine, but doesn't want to take the engine apart, so he's going to find someone else to do it.
On the bright side, though, we did some canning this week! We started with dill pickles, which were pretty easy, and lots of fun to do. Although I think next time, we could get the jars a little fuller, I think we did pretty good for a first try. And the jars look so pretty!

Since they were so easy and fun, I thought I would do peaches the next day. Sarah and I had been to a local orchard, and split a bushel of seconds to do our canning with. And now I've learned my lesson. I will not be buying peach seconds next year, no matter how cheap they are. The ones that weren't mushy and filled with ants were rock hard and tiny. I did about a quarter of the half bushel (about 20 peaches) and then gave up. I was blanching them to get the skins off, but, I think because they weren't ripe, they wouldn't slide off like they were supposed to. They kind of mushed off and tore and shredded. Then they weren't free stone, so they didn't come off the pit easily, either. So between the stuff that stuck to the skin, and the stuff that stuck to the pit, I had about 1/4" of mush. Luckily we had some Ontario peaches which were big and juicy, so I used those up as well, and they worked just like they were supposed to. The skins came off easily and they were easy to slice up. Then I almost canned them in salt water instead of sugar - luckily I had recruited Jai by that point, and he stopped me before I got too far! When they were finally finished, hours later, I ended up with only two jars of peaches, and I was feeling pretty discouraged, although I know they will be yummy later.
We had a big pot full of sugary peach water left over, and I didn't want to dump it, but couldn't think what it would be good for. And then I remembered the ice cream maker! We bought it on sale 90% off in the sidewalk sale at Home Hardware last summer, but never used it. We took the sugar & peach water, and some home-grown frozen strawberries that we blended with some of the rock-hard peaches, and dumped the whole thing into the ice-cream maker. Twenty minutes later, we had the most delicious peach-strawberry sorbet this planet has ever seen.

And then it was all worth it :)


Anonymous said...

Yummm! Hi to Peanut & Webby (and you guys and Emma and Jane too)!! Grandpa's vote is to fix the car - he says he had a timing belt go a couple of cars back - it was hard to get to it but cheap to fix after the labour costs. Anyway, if that's what's up with your car, maybe that helps? Take care! XOXO M/J

Anonymous said...

Hi guys! Just wanted to drop you a note to say that we're thinking of you and wondering what yummy things have come out of your garden since the last post and what other cool toys you guys have made..... New post on our site today with some recent pics.... Talk to you soon!