Berries, and good help to pick them.

Welp, I’m going to have to set aside some time to spend in the kitchen; the season of “puttin’ up,” 2017 version, is fixing to begin to commence.

In my auxiliary refrigerator I have a dozen small heads of cabbage, which are destined for kraut. It’s a moderately labor intensive process, but the food processor takes care of the bulk of it, and salt and time the rest, so that can be dispatched relatively quickly. That, I suspect, is Monday morning. Then it can burble happily away in its “crock,” which is actually a five-gallon food-grade plastic bucket, for six weeks, until it’s ready to take out and can. And we will have kraut for another season.

More importantly, there are two gallons of blackberries in said second fridge, that I went and picked in less than 30 minutes yesterday morning. Yes, there is blackberry jam in my future! (Note to self: Go get sugar.)

I’ve been saying for ages I was going to go pick blackberries up at Scatter Creek Farms, north of me some 30-45 minutes. Last year, a summer hailstorm came through midweek before I was planning on going up that weekend, and did for the berries. This year, I figured I’d get going early. Had AGC 2 all weekend, and I decided he would probably be entertained by going to pick blackberries, and if nothing else, could romp about for a bit and wear himself out.

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Feeling all fruity

March 12, 2017

Fresh pineapple in between the yogurt and the granola.

I think it’s my fault it snowed.

Y’see, how it was, was, I was feeling all springy and such, and I indulged in fruit. Lots of fruit the past week or 10 days. Strawberries, blueberries, pineapple, pears, watermelon. I even toyed with the idea of adding some small watermelons and some canteloupes to my garden plan.

And Mother Nature said, “Uh, uh, no you don’t! Don’t you even start thinking about spring and such!” And that bitch dumped four inches of snow on us yesterday afternoon and last night. On the very day, in fact, that I was supposed to go to Lowe’s and pick up my order of bagged compost, fence stuff, and other assorted garden-y things.

Pffth. I just hope it didn’t get the early peaches.

Anyway. I’m enjoying fruit, whatever the weather is. I made yogurt the other day, and granola, and I’ve had that with both pineapple and with strawberries. Good breakfast fare, that; it’ll stay with you for a while.

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A plethora of peaches

July 12, 2016

Hard to get a pic before a serving disappears...

Hard to get a pic before a serving disappears…

If you ever wanted any proof that God has a sweet tooth, the astounding fruit this season ought to convince you.

Strawberries, which were pretty weak last year, made up for it in spades; some of the sweetest, prettiest berries I’ve seen in years. Blueberries, likewise, were plentiful and sweet, although it seemed the season was awfully short. Ditto raspberries. And I have already waxed rhapsodic about the blackberries.

I’m getting some exceptional canteloupe now, and I have a watermelon in my fridge I’ll cut sometime soon.

And for the last month, we’ve had peaches at the farmers market. We’re in peach country here, with sizeable orchards to the north and south of us. The cling peaches were first up, smaller, and something of a pain to separate from their pit, but awfully sweet and good. And last week, I found my first freestone peaches at the market.

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Still stewin’ around

March 20, 2013

Lamb stew with dried fruit. Good. More trouble than it's worth.

Lamb stew with dried fruit. Good. More trouble than it’s worth.

Because, one ought to cook all the stews one can before winter’s over, yes? Yes.

Besides, I’ve got this lamb thing going on. You see, in my blue-collar, not-trailer-park-but-not-all-that-far-from-it background, I never, never ate lamb. Wasn’t in our world view, just like veal wasn’t in our world view. We ate beef, and pork, and chicken, and game of all varieties, and seafood of whatever nature could be locally caught, plus shrimp when we went out.

It’s not like we were all beans and cornbread, OK?

But lamb. I never saw a live sheep, other than in the annual Living Nativity scene, in which I was, by turns, an angel (don’t laugh), a shepherd, a Wise Man (person), and one significant year, Mary, and they shipped those in from somewhere. Stinky critters they were, too. And when I left home and went to the Big City, well, there may have been a few restaurants in Memphis that served lamb, but I never found ’em.

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