This week has been so busy I've only found a few moments to knit. Isn't that terrible?
Harvest time has arrived in our vegetable garden. Summer squash, green and wax beans, cucumbers, and peppers have to be picked every day or every other day. It's been a real challenge in the 90 degree heat we've been having this week. I go outside for 15-20 minutes to pick and then come in to cool off and drink water. Once it's all harvested, I use some of it for meals and prepare the rest for freezing. This week I've frozen 5 bags of wax beans and 8 bags of zucchini and summer squash chunks. I freeze the squash and use it in soups, pasta, and other recipes during the winter. Last night, with hubby's help, I picked a bushel of green and wax beans. They are waiting in the refrigerator for me to clean, blanch, and bag them up for the freezer. That's what I will be doing this afternoon.
The blueberries are about finished for the season. The heat and lack of rain is drying them up. I picked the last of them yesterday. I've frozen 4 quarts of berries. Earlier in the week, I made a batch of fresh blueberry muffins. Yum!
While I was cutting up squash for the freezer last night, I was also cooking a big pan of crook neck summer squash. It doesn't freeze as well as other types of summer squash. I used a recipe I got years ago from a former SIL's mother. It's delicious! Here's the recipe.
Southern Style Crookneck Squash
1-2 lbs yellow crookneck squash
1 yellow onion, chopped
a pat of butter and some olive oil
a little sugar or brown sugar
Wash and cut the ends off the squash. If they are small, slice in 1/4" or thinner slices. If they are bigger, cut in quarters; then slice. If the seeds are still small, they will be fine. If they are getting woody, scrap them out with a spoon. Chop up the onion. In a large skillet, place the butter and a little olive oil. In a large skillet, place the butter and olive oil. Turn the burner on medium and let the butter melt. Swish around to combine. Then add the squash and onion. Stir occasionally as it cooks. Cook until the squash is soft. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in a little sugar and serve. Yum!
This recipe works best with the flavor of crookneck squash--not zucchini.
Tomorrow I'm off to the Midwest Fiber & Folk Art Fair in Crystal Lake, Illinois near Chicago with a van full of friends. I can't wait! We're leaving early in the morning and coming back in the evening. (I'll have time to knit on the way. Yippee!) Last year was the first year for this event. It was great! This year it has expanded, moved to a larger venue, and has a vendor list that makes me drool to read it. I'm setting myself a budget for fiber and yarn. Let's hope I can stick to it! LOL!
Sunday, you'll find me back in the garden picking more produce and getting it ready for the freezer. It's time consuming right now, but will be very much appreciated this winter.
Food prices are continuing to rise. One way to keep your cost low is to buy in season. Summer is a good time to go to farmer's markets and stock up on vegetables and fruits that you can freeze or can for the winter. The supply is plentiful, you know who you are buying from, and the price is cheaper than your local grocery store. Or put out the word to friends who garden that you are willing to take extra produce off their hands. Volunteer to help pick it and you'll get more than a few offers of free produce! LOL!