Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Life on the Farm’ Category

I must apologize up front for the editing on this video. I am not very experienced at this, and the super easy app I had on my phone “updated” and became way too complicate for me to use. I found another app, but it wasn’t much better – so hopefully I will find one I can understand.

However! I do understand canning! This is a video for making strawberry pie filling. I learned to do this last year, and have since made apple pie filling as well as peach. It is a little labor intensive, but well worth the effort! If you have questions, please feel free to e-mail me.

This is the recipe:

For 1 quart: 3 1/2 cups fresh or thawed strawberries, 3/4 cup plus 2 tbsp granulated sugar, 1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp Clear Jel (cook type), 1 cup cold water, 3 1/2 tsp bottled lemon juice.

For 7 quarts: 6 quarts (24 cups) strawberries, 6 cups sugar, 2 1/4 cups Clear Jel, 7 cups cold water, 1/2 cup bottled lemon juice.

4-8 drops of red food coloring – optional

Wash and cap strawberries and drain fruit. Combine sugar and Clear Jel in a large pot, mix well. Add water and mix well. (Add red food coloring, if desired). Cook on med high until mixture thickens and begins to bubble. Stir to a smooth consistency. Add lemon juice and boil 1 minute, stirring constantly. Fold in strawberries immediately and then fill quart jars, one at a time, leaving 1 1/2″ headspace. Do your best to get all the air bubbles out of the jars. This will be difficult due to the thickness of the mixture. It’s best to add a little at a time, and remove the air bubbles. Wipe rims, add lids and rings and process 30 minutes in a full rolling boil water bath.

Canning Strawberry Pie Filling Video

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

I uploaded a new cooking video to youtube today. It is for making pastry and an apple cobbler pie! Enjoy!

Apple Cobbler Pie

And can you believe it? The “Angel Biscuits” video has over 2,000 views! Unbelievable!

Angel Biscuits

If you haven’t subscribed to my youtube channel, please do so! I think you’ll enjoy it.

Read Full Post »

I recorded a video in my kitchen on how to make home made pastry and mini (individual) chicken pot pies. I haven’t uploaded it to youtube yet, but I did put it on facebook. Here is the link.

https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=437399573324480&id=179662699098170

Read Full Post »

A Thanksgiving poem, written 40 years ago – but still very relevant!

bettys-pictures-580

A Country Thanksgiving

A country Thanksgiving’s

the most glorious kind.

For we saw the food raised,

from the stalk and the vine.

We are no stranger

to the hoe and the plow.

We’ve each known hard labor,

and sweat on our brow.

But that labor’s behind us

the crops are all in.

Let’s humble ourselves

and be thankful again.

For the food on the table

a result of our task.

And for strength for the labor

a labor now past.

Father, a blessing,

we know we’ve received here.

You’ve shown us Your mercy

throughout the past year.

And on through the future

please show us the way.

As we strive more to serve You

with each passing day.

Betty J. Newman ©1976

Read Full Post »

When it gets to the end of summer and I see how much good food I’ve let go to waste, and how pitiful my herbs look… I feel like such a failure. Yes, I’ve canned a lot and preserved a lot and dehydrated a lot – but look at how much I lost – because I just couldn’t (or didn’t) get to it…

Yes, there were other “fish to fry” and other responsibilities to attend to – but let’s face it – sometimes I was just plain lazy…and it weighs on me and I promise to do better next year. Yep! If the trumpet don’t sound, and Lord willing – I’ll do better next year!

Read Full Post »

In the past week I’ve put up okra, tomatoes and cabbage (all separate endeavors, by the way) but since I’ve written about different ways of canning tomatoes, I thought I’d share how we put up okra and cabbage.

I dearly love fried okra, but couldn’t find a method that suited me in terms of not only taste, but ease. One of my cousins was known for her “fresh tasting” fried okra – even in the dead of winter! So I learned to fix it her way – and you know what? It is both extremely easy AND delicious!

So – now this is how I fix okra for the freezer. Wash and slice okra as if you were preparing a meal.

20160721_155411

Next bread the okra with meal (one thing I do differently is I add purple onions – delicious!)

20160721_163935

Next, fry up in a big ole cast iron skillet using your oil of choice. (Bacon grease adds that extra special Southern flavor – but you can use other oil if you must… and I guess you could use another frying pan – but be careful about too many changes there, lol!)

Don’t salt or add other seasonings to the okra as it’s frying. Fry it until it is *almost* as crisp as you’d like for serving then drain on paper towels.

20160721_182510

After it has drained and cooled, spread it on a parchment lined baking sheet (in a single layer if possible) and freeze for 2-3 hours.

20160721_184245

After it has quick frozen, fill freezer bags and return to the freezer. By preparing the okra this way you can fill gallon bags and only take out as much as needed for a meal (even a single serving!)

To prepare for serving, pour desired amount into a baking dish, add salt and pepper to taste, and cover with foil (no need to thaw first).  Bake for about 30 minutes (depending on amount preparing) @350° or until it is hot throughout and as crisp as desired. You can remove the foil if needed for the last few minutes.

I love preparing okra this way. I can spend one or two days frying okra and have enough for all winter! Serving it is quick, easy AND delicious!

 

Now for putting up cabbage. A few weeks ago I harvested 12 heads of cabbage, soaked them in salt water to remove any unwelcomed visitors, put them in plastic bags and stuck them in an extra fridge. I’ve given several away, but prepared a couple for us yesterday. I cut them up and blanched in boiling water for a couple of minutes, then immediately plunged into ice water.

20160723_152750

20160723_152801

And because I like onions in nearly everything, I also blanched some purple onions, too.

20160723_155919

After draining the cabbage I put some of the leafier pieces in the dehydrator and spread the other with onions on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.

20160723_165255

20160723_171056

I quick froze this just like the okra, but I vacuum sealed it in smaller bags. Some I’ll fry as a side dish, and some I’ll add to soups. I stored the dehydrated cabbage in a half-gallon jar. Amazing, about six trays if cabbage yielded this little dab if cabbage. But it will be great when I want just a little extra cabbage in my soup.

1469413138959

1469413503444

Add to the okra and cabbage these tomatoes and there you have it – just another week on the farm! #farmstewardship

Read Full Post »

20160411_125950

If you look in the background of many of my cooking photos you’ll find cast iron – and lots of it! This post is about how to maintain it and use it every day!

On a Facebook page someone asked about purchasing some cast iron skillets – if they were a “good price”. I asked if she was purchasing them for the value or to use them. She replied that she wanted to start using cast iron again as it had been many years since she had.

Many people love the idea of using cast iron, but either are afraid to use it or simply don’t know how to care for it. I’ve used cast iron my whole life, so I thought I’d share how I care for mine. Note – this is simply maintaining their use. If you are buying antique cast iron, I’d recommend getting a lead-testing kit from your local hardware store to check if the cast iron has been used for other purposes in the past. I bought the dutch oven in the photo above at an antique tractor show. Before I used it I scrubbed it and tested it for lead – and now it’s a “daily user” in my kitchen!

I love cooking in my cast iron skillets. I have a dozen or so varying size skillets, a couple of Dutch ovens and a “chicken fryer”. Most of these have come from my and my husband’s parents, grandparents and great-grandparents. Who knows how old they are. Many people avoid using cast iron because they say it is a pain to maintain, or it sticks. If it sticks, it is not seasoned properly – and the maintenance is not as bad as you might think. Cast iron is the original “non-stick” cookware. It is actually beneficial to your health to cook in cast iron – plus – you don’t get any of those “Teflon-y” particles in your food!

There are varying opinions on whether one should wash cast iron – my mother always did, therefore, so do I. (I make too much gravy not to wash mine!) If you have really cruddy cast iron, have bought flea-market cast iron, or your cast iron sticks horribly – you might want to strip it and re-season. There are several YouTube videos that explain the process; however the best videos (and recipes) are from “The Culinary Fanatic” (Jeffrey B. Rogers).

For a quick and easy re-seasoning process, or for just occasional maintenance of your cast iron you can do the following (this is how I season mine):

Wash your cast iron in mild warm soapy water, using a plastic “scrubby” if necessary. Rinse and dry with a paper towel. Wipe the cast iron lightly with Crisco, covering well, but not gobbed on. Place the cast iron in the oven set on 200° for 20 minutes.

After 20 minutes, wipe the cast iron with paper towels or an old dishrag and then place it back in the oven – upside down – and increase the heat to 300° for 15 minutes.

After 15 minutes, wipe the cast iron again, and return to the oven increased to 400° for two hours. If your cast iron still sticks, check your recipe or method of cooking (right temperature for what you’re cooking, or maybe trying to turn the food too soon – that often is the cause).

If possible, simply wipe the cast iron after use, but if food is stuck on or you make a lot of gravy, too – then wash it, wipe very lightly with Crisco and place in a hot oven for just a few minutes each time you use it.

Just a few photos of things I cook in my cast iron:

 

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »