As we get ready to leave for Spain, there is work to do in the garden. There are shelves in our basement storage room where we place canned preserves such as dilled carrots, tomatoes, cucumber pickles, beet soup (borscht), and several varieties of jam. Last autumn we put up quite a few jars of tomatoes knowing that we wouldn’t be home when it would be time to harvest tomatoes and can them. Still, we planted a garden this spring knowing that we would be home to harvest peas, beans, young carrots, potatoes, Swiss Chard, and a few early cherry tomatoes.
We have already picked half of the carrots for eating fresh and for inclusion in borscht which was canned using our beets from the garden. We added in potatoes, beans and peas, also from garden along with some dill for soup flavouring.
We much prefer eating our veggies fresh and making our soup from scratch, but when you live on the Canadian prairies, you make do the best you can by putting a garden to good use with the making of preserves. We not only can produce, we freeze some as well. Extra green beans and peas, as well as raspberries and such, are easily prepared for the winter by freezing them.
Naturally, our children and our grandchildren love eating grandma’s cooking or taking home their favourite treats – sauerkraut, dilled carrots, and dilled cucumbers. The frozen berries are brought out when they come to our house and then cooked up to make pancake syrup for papa’s famous pancakes, which they always give a helping hand in both preparation and cooking.
What else do we put in the deep freeze for winter use? Venison, home-made smoked wild meat sausage, fish that has been caught not purchased, perogies made at the kitchen table, cabbage rolls, and other treats. Now, it’s time to go back to the garden to pick the last of the green beans.