Bean Workin’!

Today was a really good day.  This was one of those rare days where everything just seems to go so well, so perfect that you have to pinch yourself to see if you are in fact dreaming.  My errands went so smoothly they were done in record time this morning.  Then today’s bread did the most perfect rise and the steps went so smooth it was almost effortless baking our fresh bread.  And, the topper of this day was harvesting my green beans fresh and having them cleaned, cut and pressure canned before they could even realize they’ve been picked. 

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I now have 10 perfect pints of fresh green beans to add to our pantry.  No chemicals, no salt…just natural well water and beans.  Nothing more. 

I know the garden is a lot of work, but oh my…now it’s paying off.  In not only with  cost but in health and a sense of providing for our own.  Life is good.  Soooo good. 

Zucchini Week!!!!

Over this next week and then some, it will be zucchini, zucchini, zucchini!  And all the other vegetables that come ready demanding my attention.  Zucchini is easy to grow and grows rapidly and you have to be fast to take advantage.  Some of the following will explain my week and my dire need to put my feet up at night.  Hope you enjoy the adventure and take note of the totally new-old recipe I found for the zucchini….so amazingly wholesome and delicious. 

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This is the latest meat-pasta sauce I made using fresh zucchini, onions and carrots out of my garden.  Of course it’s with ground steak, fresh mushrooms, garlic and fresh from my garden onions.  I took this meat sauce and chopped pasta into it, pressure canned it for my grandson Sam….I know he’ll love it.  Everything is chopped for baby maximum enjoyment!

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This is a fresh grill.  I ran out to the garden and harvested this while the grill was warming.  Cleaned it, olive oil – pepper bath and on the hot grill.  Zucchini, red sweet onion, broccoli…amazing.  I swear, I can still taste the sunshine….

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This is the above grilled veggies, on a serving platter and fresh parmesan cheese on top while they are still hot enough to melt the cheesy goodness into the vegetables.  We are having so many veggies and totally loving every bit.

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Okay, are you sitting down?  Good.  OMG, this is a very old recipe I found that is amazingly good, filling and so perfect.  Can’t say enough about it.  It is a zucchini stuffed with veal that is simple yet will impress any guest.

Preheat oven 375 F.

Take three medium sized zucchinis and put them in a heat resistant large bowl.  Boil enough water to cover the zucchini.  After the water has been on the zucchini for 10 minutes drain.  Now, cut each zucchini in half and remove the pulp.  Set the pulp aside.  Put your zucchini halves in a backing dish.  Set all of this aside.

In a large fry pan, in two tbsps olive oil brown 1 lb of ground veal.  Take veal out of pan and set aside.  In this same pan now sauté 1/4 cup chopped fine onion, add 3 cloves of minced garlic.  Cook over med. heat until onions are tender.  

Now, whip two eggs well.  Add to the sautéed onions and garlic in the fry pan.  Stir over med. heat.  Add 1/4 parmesan cheese, keep stirring.  Add back the veal and pulp from the zucchini.  Stir all well.  Shut off heat.  Add marjoram 1 tsp,  1/2 tsp ground cloves, fresh ground pepper and 1/2 tsp salt.  Stir it all up. 

In a micro-safe bowl melt 1/4 cup butter.  Add to this 3/4 cups bread crumbs.  Mix well. 

Okay, now for the home stretch.  Spoon filling into zucchini shells in baking dish.  Cover with buttered crumbs.

Bake about mins.  This is a decadent, delicious meal.  Company quality!

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I served my veal stuffed zucchini with noodles with home made old fashioned  Alfredo sauce.  Be sure to click the pictures for the full zoon effect!  Hope you enjoyed your visit!! 

Diggin’ those Carrots!!

….and potatoes, and broccoli.  Today I dug and brought in most of my carrots.  The variety we have in the garden is a very sweet carrot.  I washed and used my food processor to slice, dice, julienne and shred.  I left some fresh in the garden and in the refrigerator as well. 

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When I was out in the garden digging carrots I was surprised to see I had broccoli ready that had to come in.  So as soon as I finished the carrots I ran out and got the broccoli.  I cut the heads up, cleaned them and checked closely for worms as we didn’t use any chemicals on our broccoli and to make sure I also submerged them in salt water that will bring any hiding out.  I got several bags blanched and kept some aside for supper.  When the broccoli is that fresh it’s a real pleasure to eat.  A little steaming, some cheese sauce….perfect.

For supper tonight I slow roasted chicken breasts and legs in mushroom sauce, I dug some fresh new potatoes, we had the broccoli and the cheese sauce.  But what was the best was the carrot soup I made from my fresh carrots!

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To make this soup I sautéed a fresh red onion from the garden in 4 tbs butter, I then added 3 cloves of minced garlic.  When these were nice and soft I added 1/4 fresh dill weed, 1 tsp rosemary, 3/4 tsp ground black pepper.  Then I added 6 cups of chicken broth and 12 fresh diced carrots.  I let this all simmer until the carrots were nice and soft.  I then took my immersion blender and stirred it until the soup was very smooth.  I then added 3/4 cup of heavy whipping cream and again stirred with the immersion blender.  Now I added my salt bit by bit while tasting so I got it just right.  Remember, you can add it, but you can’t take it away.  Add…taste….add….taste.

Peter and I enjoyed this meal so very much.  So fresh, so tender, so tasty.  After dishes we went out and weeded in the garden and planted more lettuce plants out.  There’s still lots of weeds that need hoeing but we will get there.  We work so well together.  ❤  Click the pics to enlarge, hit the back button to return.  Hope you enjoyed your visit. 

BEETS BEETS BEETS

Well that’s a wrap for this year on the beet front.  This last two days has yielded 16 jars of regular beets, 6 jars of borscht and just now finished 14 jars of pickled beets. 

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That should keep us in beets for some time to come and you just can’t beat that!  Next week will be carrots and a storm of zucchini will let rip I figure about Tuesday.  Zucchini bread, zucchini relish and frozen zucchini chunks for stir fries and grilling. 

All this canning and caring is a whole lot of work but when that snow flies it’s just so nice to have our own food that’s been kissed by the sun in our own back yard.  Chemical free, no msgs, no crap.  Just good clean healthy eating. 

Just Beet It. Seriously.

Today was a long day.  This morning we were completely out of bread so my day started by baking four loaves.  I never tire of the wonderful smell of baking bread.  Then, after making breakfast, baking the bread and doing all those dishes it was off to the garden! 

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I harvested half my beets for straight outright canning.  I so look forward to these sweet treats when the snow is blowing and I’m making borscht, or doing them up as a side with harvard sauce, or just warming them with butter and pepper.  This made for a long day, and my feet are sure tired.  But so well worth the effort.

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While harvesting I saved the nicest beet greens, and while my beets were cooking tender so I could peel and slice them, I triple washed and blanched my beet greens.

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I then took my blanched beet greens and squished the excess water out, formed them into meal sized mounds and froze them solid.

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After they were frozen I could vac-pac them so they stay harvest fresh all winter long.

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Of course during all this time, I was also peeling and slicing my cooked beets and making them ready for the pressure canner.   I just finished now at 6:45 pm processing 16 wonderful pint jars.  Tomorrow, I will harvest the rest of my beets and pickle them.  My feet say booo, but my heart and head can’t wait.  So love this life.  ❤