Sunday, August 25, 2013

Winter Fare

As low as my energy level is since my heart attack, I'm still managing to put up some foods for winter fare. Many are not from my own garden since I didn't get much planted this year due to health problems plus our crummy weather.

I'm really concerned that this winter may be a bear, and with so much of the country having either flooding or drought, I expect food prices to rise.

I bought a bunch of tomatoes, plus got quite a few from a neighbor and I oven-roasted them in batches with lots of chopped Vidalia onions and garlic. After going through the food mill, I have quite a few pint jars now canned for winter use. (My own few heirloom tomatoes got late blight, I think I only got 3 good enough to slice.)

Corn is not a favorite because it gets so starchy so quickly, but I have quick-boiled a baker's dozen and just need to cut the kernels off the cob and can them.

The few summer squash my sister's yard man didn't cut down have yielded a bounty of fresh squash, mostly now grated and frozen for later use. I found a recipe for Zucchini Faux Crab Cakes last year, and loved them.  My zucchini hasn't done well (other than the gigantic one that grew while I was in the hospital) but now has more blooms. 

I'm thinking to make the faux crab cake recipe with yellow summer squash since the squash is basically a filler, and if I get any more zukes, they will definitely be used in that recipe. They are easy to make, cook, and freeze for re-heating later as part of a quick meal.

Two other plants the yard man didn't cut down look to be maybe a spaghetti squash (and loaded with small fruits) and one acorn squash plant that only has a fruit or two that I can see among the humongous leaves. Both are planted in a 2 year-old alfalfa bale and growing like gangbusters! Good thing I like winter squash, and they keep well in the root cellar. 

He also cut down all my pole bean plants. sigh.

I have picked a few of my thornless blackberries, maybe close to a gallon, but it's become such an overgrown jungle that most went to waste. I'll make some spicy blackberry savory which is great with white meats (kinda like using cranberry sauce), and perhaps some blackberry syrup if I have enough berries.

My filbert bush looks like it will be the first year for a really good crop. It's now about 5 years in the ground here. The first year it bore nuts, I think I got about 12-15 nuts. Last year, probably 4-5X that amount.

I planted shallots, garlic and cippolini onions in one bed but it became so overgrown with weeds that I don't think there's a chance anything survived. I wanted SO much to make some cippolini onions in balsamic vinegar! They are $8.95-$9.95 a pound on most olive bars and I love their taste.

I may have already posted this, so forgive any lapses in my memory (which is not so good lately)... I have an upcoming trip planned with a gardening friend to go to the Outer Banks for several days in early October to get seafood. Living inland as I do, seafood is always the pits... frozen, stored, shipped, thawed, maybe re-frozen, but certainly NOT fresh... and most shrimp here are just tasteless farm-raised 'shrimp'.

Please put out good vibes that we can make our trip without the threat of a coastal hurricane! I haven't looked forward to such a trip in years so I'm kinda like a young kid anticipating Santa Claus and Christmas.


  1. Yard man from hell!

    I didn't plant a garden at all this year due in part to our severe drought & largely due to just not having the umphf to do it for some reason. Now, as I prepare to head off for a 3-month monastic retreat, I begin to feel the stirrings of wanting to prep my garden beds for next year...but no time!

    I'll bet you find a few onions in those weeds, & they'll be intensely flavored.

    1. Hard to believe with all the work you've done building a GH and beds that you didn't plant this year, but I haven't had much impetus this year either.


I'd love to hear what you think about my posts! We all learn together.