Overwhelmed by vegetables? I know sometimes September can be overwhelming. More gardeners than ever are donating produce to the Manna Market free produce stand to help make sure that people who cannot afford fresh healthy foods are getting them. That's always an option if you feel like you don't have the time to maniacally preserve food all month. If you do have the time + patience to put away a lot of food, maybe this post can help you make it a bit easier. Don't be afraid to take shortcuts. My favorite shortcuts include:
- Refrigerator Pickles - but not just cukes, think carrots, turnips, radishes, onions and all tasty things that can be added to meals October - March. These vinegar bombs can last up to 6 months in your home refrigerator, no canning needed.
- Quick Ferments - Sauerkraut, carrots, turnips and all the things listed above can be fermented in a week to two weeks. You can even use your canning jars, just make sure your lacto-fermentation is happening an-aerobically, (meaning below the liquid in the jar).
- Freeze your tomatoes whole, toss them in a gallon bag whole and freeze them. When you want to use them, take them out and thaw. The skin will peel right off and you can take the seeds out, run through a mill, or use however you would have originally. This is probably my favorite lazy technique.
- Freeze Freeze Freeze just blanch veggies and put them in freezer baggies, so easy and you can use the same water for everything including, kale, broccoli, spinach and corn.
- Shred extra summer squash and freeze without even blanching....Thaw and then squeeze out extra liquid in a towel. You're ready for baked goods!!!!
- Put things in cans and put those cans in the freezer!!!!!!! Just pull out a can, thaw and eat! LAAAZZZYYYY but if you've got the freezer space why not?
Butttttt if you find that even these shortcuts are too much, bring your produce to Manna every Wednesday from 1-3 pm and we will happily re-home it for you!