Hope this writing finds you all staying cool! It sure has been good and hot this summer! Yes, I say good cause the tomatoes, peppers and okra, and many other veggies sure like it, they thrive in the heat!
So even though it is very hot for us folks - we can bare it -just knowing that the food we are planting and tending, will be filling the canner and crocks and stocking the pantry shelves for many a meal in the future and feeding our families. All that hard work, waiting and weather is worth it!
Corse it’s always quite a pleasure to eat vegetables like sweet corn, fresh from the garden, right off the stalk or picked from the patch and chilling in the spring, mouthwatering watermelon! Or how about fresh picked blueberries! If you have never tried blueberry smoothie I’d like to encourage you to give it a try, it’s so refreshing and good for you on top of that! We make ours with coconut milk, bananas and fresh blueberries and greens. (you can use frozen fruit to make a very cold drink)
While our lettuce is over at this time will still have plenty of kale and other greens, even wild greens like lamb’s quarter we can harvest and prepare. Greens can be added to smoothies, pesto salads, fried eggs and more
We had a very late garden this year. The tomatoes, peppers, and watermelons will come on a bit later but they are looking good so far and here we do have a long growing season!
Cucumbers are coming in great right now and we have enjoyed making juices, like cucumber, kale, apple and lemon! This drink is so cooling on the very hot days!
Its also been a blessing to have plenty of cucumbers to make easy-very crunchy-pickles!
Here is a recipe if you’d like try them!
Fermented Dill Pickles
Small cucumbers to fill a wide-mouth quart jar
Head of dill
Clove or two of garlic
Tiny pinch of turmeric
1 &1/2 tablespoon sea salt
1 cup filtered water
A few grape or red raspberry leaves ( this keeps them crunchy!)
Wash cucumbers and pack them into the jar along with the garlic, dill and leaves leaving a 1 1/2 inch head space. Combine the remaining ingredients and pour over cucumbers leaving a 1 inch head space, you may need to add more water to cover the cucumbers. Place a plastic lid on loosely, and keep at room temperature of 3-7 days depending on your taste preference. Some folks let them ferment for several weeks, this will also depend on the temperature of the room. They are now ready to enjoy and move them to cold storage to slow the fermentation. For more fermenting check out the books on the sidebar!
You can enjoy these pickles in all kinds of great summertime dishes like potato salad, salmon salad (or tuna- we use canned salmon instead of tuna) and egg salad . The pickles can be sliced thin and laid and stacked on any sandwich or you can eat them just like they are!
For more food preserving, gardening and herbal inspiration check out the SALE we’re having on the Homestead Blessings Collection Two!
The Art of Canning
The Art of Gardening
The Art of Herbs
DVD 3-Pack on SALE now for $35.95
Sale ends July 10th PM
Until next time,
the West Ladies