Gardening is at the top of the list. The first of the beets are ready to come up and be pickled. Actually pickled with the yummy spices grandma recommends which are clove,cinnamon,mustard seed and bay leaf. Just a tiny pinch per jar. An apple cider vinegar/water/suger/salt mix with turbinado instead of refined white sugar. I use a ratio of 1/2 vinegar, 1/2 water... sugar and salt to taste. Last year we tried to do 30 lbs of beets in one day. Never again.... It took all day and the whole kitchen was fuschia when we were done. So from now on we are only doing 10 lbs at a time. While Ida Baily Allen says they need to cure for 6 weeks... We have found that they rech maximum flavor in about 14 weeks.
Also going to cut herbs for drying today. I love herb day!.. It makes the whole house smell delicious. By this evening we should have sage,oregano, rosemary, tarragon and parsely hanging from the drying shelf.
Special Thanks goes out to my friend with the magic hands. She gave me 2 cases of canning jars from the 20's and 30's ... with glass lids. They are beautiful jars that have turned green, blue and purple over the last 80 some years. They are perfect for storing our dried herbs!
Speaking of herbs. From our own herbs I made a mixture of sage, tarragon, garlic , Olive oil, apple cider vinegar (with the mother) and a bit of sea salt, Put it all in the morter bowl and pestled it to mush then slathered it all over a small pork roast, then threw the pork roast on the grill. I dont think pig has ever tasted better!. To complete our meal, we dug up a couple of fist sized potatoes from the garden and grilled those as well next to Jimmys snow peas. Yep, there is something satisfying on a primal level when eating food grown and prepped with your own hands. Thank God for the garden..... with the economy tanking and work slowing down ...Its the one thing that seems to calm Jimmy down. Not sure what I'm going to do with him after the fall harvest. I'm trying to talk him into doing some hydroponic gardening in the garage this winter. I cant let him just play Halo all winter... cuz first- person shooter games make him too cranky to live with!