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Archive for January 5th, 2010

>Canning

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The cold weather can be a bit discouraging. I found I had a bit of cabin fever over the break, all of the time off and too cold to go outside. I’m not as brave as some, as under 60 degrees is pretty much off limits for me. The few nice days that we did have were spent outside with the family roaming around.
I did manage to put some of my time to good use, practicing my canning skills. Canning is a necessary step for my goal of eventually eating produce only from my garden. They also make great gifts 🙂
I used Jenny’s recipe from “Rock Rose”. This recipe was so delicious, I’ll be using it again. It was also very easy. My 12 year old daughter made a batch and turned it into shortbread lemon bars, mmm! I’ve frozen several bottles for later.

This corn relish recipe is from the official Ball canning cookbook. It uses frozen corn, which is always in season, and cabbage straight from the garden. It has a great vinegar bite to it, with a nice sweetness as well. Next time I may add a little heat.

Fig Jam. This was my first attempt at jam. It was very easy and turned out well. This one is made with dried figs, so can be made year round. This was also from the Ball cookbook.

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For Christmas this year my husband bought me this awesome new grow light from Gardeners Supply Company. Last year I grew seedlings in the back window, which was less than ideal. I had a small space and not enough light. Now I have 18 sq ft to grow my seedlings.

Here’s my little greenhouse. I only have 1 heating mat, which I may have to expand to two soon, since my light is eagerly awaiting more seedlings. There are jalapenos, poblanos, wonder bells, basil, dill and summer savory. The poblanos and bells were planted on the 26th, just a little slow to germinate. The others were planted on January 3rd.

Here are the first seedlings under the grow light. These are serranos, purple beauty and canary bell peppers. These were planted on December 26th.
Just for fun I thought I’d share a few pictures of my purple veggies. We cut these up and had them for snacks on New Year’s Eve.

Chef’s Choice Blend Cauliflower

Purple Haze Carrots.
Both of these varieties are grown at the White House Garden. I saw them last night
on the food network, pretty cool!

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