Wednesday, October 24, 2012


I have started a new study--Judges.  It's a slightly depressing book because of Israel's disobedience and idolatry, but to learn how to drive out your enemies (disobedience), it's a great book. 

On another subject, our garage door opener finally gave up the ghost.  It's been acting up for a while, and we got our money's worth out of it, because we've had it a very long time.  Hubby picked up a new one, and he's installing it now.

It has a new feature our old one didn't that I'm gonna like.  You can lock it down (turn it off).  Pretty nice.
ANKLE UPDATE:  I went to the doctor today about my ankles, because I'm not making a lot of progress--at least to my liking.  Sunday, when we got to church, my ankle (the broken one) was hurting so badly that I had a hard time walking.  After eating lo-carb for a whole day my ankles improved.  The doc took x-rays again, and it is getting close to being healed, but he thinks I need physical therapy, so I start that tomorrow.  Stronger ankles here I come.  He assured me I wasn't going to be crippled the rest of my life.  Yea!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Dehydrating Produce

I'm dehydrating things now.  This is kale that has been washed, trimmed of the big stems and cut into  good sized pieces. 
I blanched them, then spread it out on two trays. 
I had three small zucchini that I washed, cut up, and blanched as well.
They took up two trays.  It only came with 4 trays, but I have two more coming soon. 
 Below are the results:  Left is the kale that I have crumbled, then the zucchini.  Next in line are the dried apples, or what's left of them.  I dried three apples, and we have about 1 and 1/2 apples worth left.  Lastly, I have strawberries, or what's left of them.  That small jar was 1/2 filled with a large store container of dried sliced strawberries, then it had dried pineapple to fill it to the top, but we munched on those as well.
 I will make a soup with the zucchini and the kale in it and see what I think of them.  I just have to try everything out before I go hog wild, as my dad would say.  I love having the fruit to munch on.  Many times I just want to eat a small snack, and drying the fruit makes it easy to do so.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Beans, Beans, Beans

Well it was a success; no jars broke--yea! 
As you can see 1/2 cup of dry navy beans was not enough. 
For the second batch I upped it a little.  I used 3/4 cup per pint for the navy beans,  a little less than that for the pintos, and same for the great northern beans.  I canned 15 pints altogether.  I ate one the the jars that have less beans in them for lunch, and it was very good.
I'm thinking of canning some pintos in quarts, and pints of chickpeas and blackeyed peas--Yum!
 In (one a few) memories I have of my paternal grandmother, she tried to get me to eat some blackeyed peas, which I hated, when I was small.  I love them now.  I can eat a whole can of them by myself, but they are hard to find now days.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Beans and Salsa

 I've decided to make up with an old friend---my pressure cooker.  I am canning some dry beans.
I decided to post on my blog while I am babysitting my canner.  It has been a long time since I posted.  SHAME!
 I bought this canner 31 years ago.  My sister, Paula and I decided to make some salsa, because our Mom and Dad were going on vacation, and with a large garden, they had an excess of tomatoes and peppers and our mother suggested we try our hand at canning some salsa.  She forgot to tell us to use gloves when we were cutting up the hot jalapeno peppers, so we didn't.   About the time we were ready to put the salsa into jars and can them, intense PAIN begin.  We had to finish the job, so we fixed bowls of ice water to put our hands in every few seconds---it was terrible.  We finished the job then she went home to nurse her wounds.  The pain lasted for Four. Long. Stinking. Hours.  I laid on the couch with my hands in ice water.  I haven't used my canner since. I have made lots of jelly, apple butter, and some water bath salsa.  We had our last baby a couple years after that episode, and I just lost interest in canning.  I have been reading peoples blogs about canning dry beans and I had to give it a try, so we dug it out of the attic yesterday afternoon.
My hubby loves beans and salsa.  So here we go.  There are 54 minutes left to pressure them, and a heard a loud crack about 20 minutes ago--I'm hoping it was just the canner popping and not a jar cracking--so far I don't smell any burnt beans smell, which is a smell I am well acquainted with.  I have let my beans boil dry on more than one occasion.  One time it took 3 days to get the smell out of our house.  I get side tracked pretty easily.  I am a little nervous about that crack I heard though.  
It's just a vinegar smell coming out of the rocker weight vent--I'm hopeful.  The pressure gauge stays steady at 15 pounds with my large burner set on 4.5.  (I added that so I will know next time.)  I am maintaining 15 lb. pressure for 90 minutes.  I poured boiling filtered water over 1/2 cup of rinced dry beans, and added 1/2 tsp. canning salt, with 1" of head space--that's also for next time.  With the 2 quarts of water in the canner, I added 2 Tbs.white vinegar so my jars would come out clean.  I will let you know how it turned out on my next post.