Happy to Color Outside the Lines!

Posts tagged ‘preserving food’

Move Over Applesauce!

At least for now. I love apples. Love applesauce. LOVE apple season in general…but where I live, it’s not that time yet.

It’s pear season.

And while they are not the same, I am treating them as equals.

In my kitchen, that is.

Yesterday I made “pearsauce”. Yes, All one word. Like “applesauce”, because, you see, I’m fair and promote equality.

It was so easy, and a huge relief to me because I had amassed 15 pears from the last 3 or 4 CSA boxes and some of them were starting to get a little too soft. I really, really didn’t want to let any of these organic beauties go to waste!

It was perfect timing too, because I already had the boiling water canner going, so it was no big to drop a jar in to seal it up for later. I could have just popped it in the fridge, but I didn’t want it to go to waste there either, and canning it allows me to save it for the perfect time. ๐Ÿ™‚

Super, SUPER easy guys.

I started with 15 pears. I peeled, cored, and chopped them into large hunks. I put the hunked pears into a large sauce pot (which really wasn’t necessary…a medium sized one would have given me plenty of room) and added 1/4 cup of water, several shakes ย of cinnamon, a splash of homemade vanilla, ย and a pinch of salt. I cooked them over medium heat until they were all tender. Some were more tender than others, but it really didn’t take long to cook them all down. *Maybe* ten minutes, tops.

cooking pearsauce

Too bad I didn’t have a little more room in that pot.

Once tender, I added the whole (huge, gigantic) pot of pears to the food processor.

pureepearsauce1

Then, I puree. (As if you didn’t see that coming.)

pureepearsauce2

Once smooth, you can either eat warm, chill and eat (within a few days) or fill up jars and water bath can for 20 minutes. I chose the latter.

15 pears made ONE pint jar.

pearsauce done

ONE.

That means if you eat 1 cup of “pearsauce”, you are eating 7.5 pears.

I would probably stick to 1/4 cup. (Or 1.875 pears.)

What I am more likely to do is save my sweet little jar for fall/winter baking. Baking I can’t eat, but can certainly gift. ๐Ÿ™‚

Another idea? Leave out the cinnamon, vanilla and salt, and you have baby food. ๐Ÿ™‚ It would freeze well too. Would be awesome mixed with avocado (also in season right now!) for your wee one.ย 

Want some good reasons to eat pears? Check this out:

PearsBuild-Out

and in the interest of equality:

Print

So there you have it. Pearsauce. Easy, nutritious, delicious, and NO added sugar.

Eat well, beauties!

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Preserving the Harvest (Part 1)

One of the things I love about eating locally grown, organic food is that you are always eating the best of the best. When you eat a peach, in season, fresh off the tree, you are experiencing what a peach should really be. Eating one out of a Del Monte can, or one that has been in cold storage for who-knows-how-long just isn’t the same.

The only problem? When they’re gone, they’re gone.

Unless…

You learn to preserve the harvest. ๐Ÿ™‚

This time of year, I spend a good amount of time “putting up food”. ย I order extra tomatoes in my CSA box. I purchase more bell peppers than I normally would at the farmers market. I order bulk quantities of certain items so that I can can, freeze, or pickle the things I use most throughout the year. This usually means jalapenos, tomatoes, peaches and some herbs are making their way to my kitchen in large amounts.

By investing a little extra time and effort, I am able to make sure that I have fresh, locally grown, organic food at my fingertips year ’round.

Today, it’s bell peppers. They are super easy to preserve and super delicious.

I have been ordering a few extra bell peppers in my boxes lately. ย I have quite a stash saved up, and today, they go to the freezer. Here are just a few.

bellpeppers

Its a simple process:

Core the bell peppers, removing the seeds.

Decide if you want slices, strips, or diced peppers, and cut accordingly.

Layer the peppers on a cookie sheet and pop into the freezer until the pieces are coated in ice (maybe 3-4 hours?)

Package into freezer bags.

Pre-freezing (or flash freezing as its called) will keep the peppers from sticking to each other in the bag. ๐Ÿ™‚

Use later for egg scrambles & omelettes, chili, pizza, fajitas…the options are endless. ๐Ÿ™‚

Their health benefits are amazing too. (Ignore the fact that those aren’t bell peppers in the picture, LOL!)

bell-pepper

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