Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Freezing The Fall Harvest

As a little girl I read all of the Laura Ingles Wilder books and just adored them. There was something so appealing about their simple life. I still have those feelings today, especially during the fall harvest. Two hundred years ago I would be a women busily gathering food from the dwindling garden. The children would be at my heels while I canned and dried the bounty. We'd tuck it away and pull it out when the snow fell. Saving just a bit of summer and fall in a jar!

But, it is 2011. I balance my days between raising two children that are 23 months apart (currently 3 and 1) and running a legal practice. My attempts to preserve for Winter are selective. I'm glad I'm not alone, a fellow blogger here in the Midwest writes about the same decision; for her, applesauce comes from the store.

The options can be overwhelming, and since many things can easily be found in a grocery aisle, I am selective in what I put away. I should clarify "put away". For me, it means to freeze. Not can, not dry, not pickle. I need to be able to freeze it easily and toss it in the chest freezer in the garage. Now that we are in Fall I've limited my efforts to 1) apples, 2) pie pumpkins, and 3) cranberries.

If time is short, I focus just on pie pumpkins. My goal is to purchase 6 of them, which will give me 12 portions for the freezer. From those will come pumpkin bread and pumpkin muffins. Watch for recipes in the months ahead.

Famers' Markets offer inexpensive, local produce that does wonder for your health (or so I hope), your wallet, and the earth. You don't have to be Ma from Little House to preserve just a bit of this goodness for the winter. You just need some freezer bags, google search, and a freezer.

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