Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Canning... in bulk

I canned today. A lot.

First, I started with peaches. These peaches have already been blanched and peeled. This is about two dozen peaches short of half a bushel. Did you also know that when you blanch and peel them and set them on a counter like this, they leak juice? And the juice is PINK????

I did not know this. So I made peach preserves first, figuring it would be nice and easy to get out of the way, and it was.

And then I started canning the peach halves. And that handy-dandy little estimate that the Ball Blue Book of Preserving has that states that each quart of peach halves should be 2-3 pounds of peaches? Make that 2. Barely. Nowhere near 3. You must have to have itty-bitty teeny-weeny little peaches with mongo-ginormous pits to get 3 pounds of peaches into a 1-quart jar. Which meant, of course, that I ran out of sterilized jars and had to run the dishwasher again to get enough jars to get all the peaches canned.

So this is what my kitchen looked like at noon today.

ALSO at noon today... yes, my kitchen looks pretty UNsterile and chaotic.
But I kept plodding on, thinking sooner or later I'd get somewhere.
And I did.
This was the kitchen at 2:30 when I took a half-hour break because I was done with all the fruit stuff. See? Progress!

Then I moved on to tomatoes.

I had a LOT of tomatoes to can. And of course they all have to be blanched and peeled, too.

This was the final result at 7:30 p.m., with my blonde little M2 peering at all the goods. From left, we have canned peaches, peach preserves, blackberry jam, and the tomatoes.


I could lie now and say that it was all in a day's work and I'm so Martha Stewart and also sewed a new dress today... but it wasn't, I'm not, and I so cannot sew... and my feet hurt like hell.
That's where this comes in. Yay self-reward!

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