This blog is simply the story about my little life
with my sweet family that the Lord has blessed me with
and the day in, day out things that we do.
It basically is my online diary/photo album of our life.
I'm glad you're here!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Get'n saucy with my husband...

Our apples are ready for harvesting!
My husband and I have been having so much fun canning together, we decided to make applesauce together too!
He has made applesauce every fall for many years, but he always seemed to do it when I wasn't home, so it was just his thing, but this year I really wanted to make it with him.
It was so fun just going out the backdoor to pick the apples!
And pick we did! Look how many gorgeous apples we got!
We brought them inside and got busy!
We held a little contest. He wanted to peel them with our wind-up apple peeler.
I saw a neat video how a person peeled several apples in one minute using a drill. Well, I can tell you right now that it looks easier on the video than in real life! It probably does work if you have the correct type of peeler, ours didn't work very well at all, so needless to say, the drill went back out to Eric's workshop.
We went back to the apple peeler and it worked great.
It's pretty simple to do and you can probably peel two apples in a minute. Not bad!
We saved all the scraps for a treat for our cows!
We had a pretty good assembly line going. He peeled, I cored/quartered, then we switched jobs.
Once we got a bowl full of quarters, I started removing any pieces of core that were left.
The next step was to cut into small pieces.
We use the recipe from the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook.
You put the apples in a pan with about a cup of water and cook them down very slowly so they don't burn.
You add 1/2 cup of brown sugar and......
.......two teaspoons of cinnamon.
Keep watching and stirring until they start breaking down. Use a masher to work them further to get the consistency you like. We like it chunky!
Once its to the consistency you like, you let it cool a bit.
Then you spoon it into freezer containers.
We made several 1-1/2 pints and a couple of quarts. We have learned from past experience that the applesauce does expand in the freezer, so we left a little room at the top of the containers.
 We let them sit on the counter for several hours before putting the lids on and freezing. I love the feeling after preparing foods when the kitchen is clean and my hard work is sitting on the counter. It was such a fun day with my husband too!
Now they are in the freezer waiting for us! This sure feels good!
We had apples left over, so I decided to try and make apple liqueur. We made plum and raspberry liqueur this year and had left over gin, so I thought I would give it a try. I filled the jars with apples, poured 1-1/3 cup of gin over them and added 1-1/3 cup of brown sugar and 2 tsp of cinnamon.
I will put them in the pantry and keep them there for a few months, turning them once a week. I sure hope this turns out, it sounds delicious!
Oh, and one more thing that I did with the apples, I made this pretty centerpiece! My friend, Shannon, gave me the neat tiered stand for my birthday and I filled it with apples and hydrangeas.

"Keep me as the apple of Your eye; hide me under the shadow of Your wings." Psalm 17:8

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

I can CAN!

 Oh how I love having a garden! It is just so wonderful to go out and pick fresh produce to eat for dinner!
 I also love the feeling that we canned and froze a lot of our produce so we will have food for the winter!
  What a haul!
This year we dried our onions, froze berries, canned beans and made pepper jelly.
I'm so happy that my husband is interested in this and we worked together.
 We cleaned the jars.
Next step is rinsing the beans and....
 .....snapping them and filling the jars.
 We added 1 tsp of salt to each jar.
 Then filled them with boiling water leaving an inch of room at the top of the jar.
 Then we put them in the canner and sealed.
 My hubby set up his propane burner out in his shop.
 We started timing it when it got above 12 pounds of pressure.
I sat there and watched it to make sure it never went under because if it does go under 12 pounds, they won't seal properly and can grow botulism. We also didn't want it to go over 14 pounds.
 We did another batch and this time added yummy garlic!
 They look so beautiful! I hope they taste as good as they look.
 A few days ago my daughter-in-love, Rachelle, came over and we made Dilly Beans, which are picked beans.
 I made them many years ago, but forgot a lot, so I basically was starting over.

 We didn't make very many, but they turned out great!
 A few days later, Eric and I made more pickled green beans. This time I'll show you the steps. First you must blanch the beans for 8 minutes.
 Meanwhile, boil vinegar and spices.
I bought this dill at the store, but next year I am going to plant some!
 Fill each jar with garlic, a little dried pepper and a sprig of dill, then fill will beans.
 Put the lids on tightly and boil for 20 minutes.
 We broke into them and they turned out delicious!
 Now it's time for peppers! We grew some dandies this year!
 This time, my other beautiful daughter-in-love, Megan, came over and we made pepper jelly together. We also made plum liqueur
 This was very special to me as we used my dear mother-in-love's recipes. Alice was known for her delicious pepper jelly and plum liqueur!
 We had so much fun together.
 I wish blogs had smellavision, the scent is marvelous.
 They turned out perfect and such a pretty shade of green!
 Next we went out to the garden and picked berries and made raspberry liquire along with the plum liquire. The plums were given to me from a friend at work. It's really simple, you fill jar with fruit, pour gin and sugar over the fruit and seal. Put the jars in a cool dark place and turn them weekly. In a few months we will strain them and put the juice in pretty jars just in time for Christmas!
Everything turned out great! I am feeling so domestic and productive! I'm so thankful for my helpers too!  It's so nice to know that I can can! :)

"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord." Colossians 3:23a
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