Jumping the gun a bit lol!

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the woodmaiden
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Jumping the gun a bit lol!

Post: # 19219Post the woodmaiden »

but say my garden DOES! grow stuff lol!! does anyone here preserve stuff?I dont really know much about it,my dad says oh get another freezer(ours is just 3 drawers & one is taken up with stuff I prepared for the girls) ok we do have room at a squash it could go in the shed or in the cellar but I dont think for one moment in the first year of growing I am going to get a freezer full lol!!! also its summit else plugged into the leccy isnt it doh!

So *years* ago...folk didnt have freezers?? so what did they do & does anyone do it & is it expensive to get the *stuff* needed,assume jars etc? & what sort of stuff preserves best & for how long?oooo questions questions LOL!
****************** I have copied this from a post I did on Shirls board Green Living,I have just read thru this section on SSish forum,but most the posts seem a bit specific for me the Uber Beginner lol!!I am hoping to have a fair few potatos as the ones I have done are going well,well ok lol the green bits sticking up are lol have no idea whats going on under the earth,prob a munching slug fest argggg!!!
:shock: hope not!
Dad was saying his freezer still got stuff in from last year...& that made me a bit sad cos I would have thought best to eat it all fresh as much as you can then freeze it?or reserve it or whatever?
We do have a shed but the tumble dryer is in there so in the Winter months it gets v v v warm in there if thats on,the shed is insulated lol so holds the heat & I wouldnt hav thought that good for storing?
Would it be better to build a box sort of thing outside the shed?a lidded crate sort of thing?
Any info & ideas much appreciated!
Bright Blessings
Woody
x x x x

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Post: # 19275Post Wombat »

G'Day Woody!

I have tried drying using the solar dryer that I made ( the article is on the site somewhere I think) and the dried veggies were OK but mainly useable for soups and stews etc. The stuff keeps well though.

I have done a bit with pickling but am not a real fan of pickled food so perhaps I am not the right person to talk to. I have found that the secret seems to be a well flavoured vinegar. I used to use the el cheapo suff and it was blech, but a good white wine vinegar makes all the difference.

I have done bottling of th Vacola type and while the stuff is OK it takes a lot of energy to cook up, then process in the jars and for non acid fruit and veggies you have to re-cook on opening so that botukism isn't a problem. Bottled fruits wit plenty of sugar do work well though.

sauces and relishes etc are easy, i use recycled jars from commercial products and they work well.

If you can pick up a copy of a general preserving book like -

Preserved - Nick Sandler and Johnny Acton - Kyle Cathie Ltd - UK (couldn't find a date, but very recent) or

Preserving - Oded Schwartz - Dorling Kindersley - UK - 1996

And just start trying things. I also have preserving books from years ago and sometimes you can do well in second hand book shops.

As for the shed, preserving your veggies is better in cool (but not freezing) conditions.

Freezing is good too but it does require power so I suggest you give some things a try and see what you find palatable before committing yourself :mrgreen: .

Nev
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Post: # 19300Post the woodmaiden »

Thanks Nev!
I am gonna see if I can get a book in a 2nd hand shop,theres one not far from here hurrah!Its things like the tomatos?I was thinking if I got a real glut...then to make up tom based pasta sauces etc which yes could be frozen but if I could bottle them that would be better,unless it all rots lol!! :roll: & I get left with nothing!!
I think I might give making a chutney or a jam a go,dad has some nice soft fruits comng along so will see what I can do & like you say what works & what we like the taste of,daft doing it if we dont like it lol! I am the same with pickling...not a huge fan but thats prob nightmares of Christmas Past with dodgy pickled onions.... :pale:
Hubby thinks our shed will get too moist & warm with the dryer going in there so will try storing outside.
Well lol! of course this IS! if anything grow :lol:
Bright Blessings
Woody
x x x x
ps it does make me feel very dim & humble when I think its not so long ago most folk knew how to do all this as 2nd nature,wish my ole Nan was still around she could help me out! :wink:

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Post: # 19309Post Wombat »

Hey Woody!

I have about a dozen variously shaped and sized bottles of tomato based pasta sauce in the pantry as we speak! I put them up in recycled pop-top glass jars and they seem to last well.

Yep, years ago there was no option so they had to now this stuff!

Nev
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Post: # 19324Post albert onglebod »

Carrots can be stored in buckets of sand.Greenbeans can be salted,potatoes can be clamped,onions tied in strings and just hung up.
Im going to try all these as our freezer is the same as yours.
I bottled pears and blackberries last year and made quite a lot of jam.
I also got a dehydrator for this years produce.

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Post: # 19330Post Muddypause »

I've not tried preserving stuff myself (other than freezing) but I have seen the result of putting carrots in sand that was damp - they all rotted, and quite quickly, too. So do make sure that the sand is completely dry and cannot get damp if you use this method.
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Post: # 19376Post Millymollymandy »

Muddypause wrote:I've not tried preserving stuff myself (other than freezing) but I have seen the result of putting carrots in sand that was damp - they all rotted, and quite quickly, too. So do make sure that the sand is completely dry and cannot get damp if you use this method.
I stored carrots and parsnips like this but it was really unnecessary as I had so many carrots still in the ground and parsnips in the freezer ready prepared.

The parsnips fared better than the carrots. I dug them up out of the sand when they are started to sprout. A lot of the carrots had rotted but the parsnips hadn't.

There are two schools of thought - dry sand and damp sand. I tried to keep mine damp but it kept drying out!

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Post: # 19571Post Wombat »

I've had problems with dry sand dessicating the veggies.............but then our climate is much drier than yours...... :?

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Post: # 19587Post Millymollymandy »

Maybe that is why - what I read in a UK gardening magazine advocated dry sand (damp climate) whilst in France the advice is damp sand (for the most part, it's drier here in summer than the UK).

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Post: # 19602Post Muddypause »

Seems this might be one of the many pieces of advice where there are two distinct, contradictory, views.

The situation I saw was in damp (but beautiful) western Scotland, where a community's carrots were stored in sand in a large, purpose built rack, in a cellar. Within a month their year's stock of carrots had all had it, and damp sand was blamed.

But I can see that dessication could be a problem too.
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Canning

Post: # 19622Post greatexpectations »

Nev-
I am glad to hear that someone has had good experiences canning in recycled glass jars. When I read about canning, they always say NOT to use old sauce jars and the like. Is this just the jar industry trying get my business, or is there a real health concern?
Thanks,
Ben

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Post: # 19645Post ina »

I also use recycled jars - just make sure the lids are still perfect, and that they don't smell of anything strong that doesn't go with what you are bottling! (Some smells take a long time to leave the glass - don't really know why. But I don't fancy bottled damsons out of a jar that held horseradish or garlic in it's former life!)

Btw, I cook the stuff for a bit first, then fill the jars hot , close the lids and boil them for a while longer. There's some things I don't think I'd attempt, because I know (from long ago, when I watched my mum bottling veg, pre-freezer time) that they take ages - I don't think it's worth using that much energy for it, when they are likely not to keep too well anyway. Green beans and peas were the most difficult, if I remember correctly, but they taste nicer out of the freezer in any case. I have a jam jar of veggie pasta sauce which I bottled two years ago, and is still fine. Fruit also keeps well, and the jam jars are a much better size for a single household.
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Post: # 19650Post alcina »

I second the Nick Sandler and Johnny Acton book, it's really good!

The other thing that happened in the past is the people grew many different varieties so that they matured at different times and they didn't get a glut. We tend only to have early and late varieties now, but in, say, Victorian times they had early early, early, late early, early mid, mid, late mid, early late, mid late and late late varieties of all sorts of veggies.

They also forced stuff at the start of the season and kept stuff under "lights" (glass) to keep them going well into the Winter.

Today we tend to think in terms of a single harvest (glut) which we then freeze or preserve, instead of a continuous harvest for most of the year. In the past they preserved for the times when nothing grew rather than simply a way of dealing with a glut.

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Re: Canning

Post: # 19800Post Wombat »

greatexpectations wrote:Nev-
I am glad to hear that someone has had good experiences canning in recycled glass jars. When I read about canning, they always say NOT to use old sauce jars and the like. Is this just the jar industry trying get my business, or is there a real health concern?
Thanks,
Ben
G'Day Ben,

If you hygiene is good, and you go for acid fruits etc. and/or throw in a bit of vinegar I think it is OK. At least I have been doing this for years and I am OK (contrary to popular belief :mrgreen: )

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Re: Canning

Post: # 20614Post ray7 »

greatexpectations wrote:Nev-
I am glad to hear that someone has had good experiences canning in recycled glass jars. When I read about canning, they always say NOT to use old sauce jars and the like. Is this just the jar industry trying get my business, or is there a real health concern?
Thanks,
Ben
I think you will find that this is to cover themselfs if a reused jar should break and injure someone.
As for food smells I use the same steraliser as for home brewing and that seems to deal with most things.
When I was first starting out I had a shortage of jars and had to buy some. I found a place called Ascot smallholding supplies (am I allowed to put a link if so I will) that was quite cheap imho and have reused the jars a number of times since.
Ray

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