What have we been up to here at the ranch?
Our garden has been rather slow this year - but we are harvesting a nice bunch of cucumbers. And kind friends have shared so much wonderful produce in the past few weeks - we've been hopping trying to get it all stored away, preserved, pickled, dryed, sliced or whatnot. :^)
Chopping up cucumber spears and garlic
Packing the jars with cucumbers, dill seed (saved from last year) and salt
All ready for the brine!
In the draw behind our house is a rather large thicket of wild plum bushes! With all the rain we have had this year, it's been an amazing crop. We've already been to pick four times, and plan to go again tomorrow!
The plum thicket is quite prickly and crowded - so it's often quite an ordeal to pick plums. Especially when one must constantly be on the look-out for wasps, rattlesnakes, and wild hogs. Eek!
The plums are about the size of a large walnut. Quite tart usually but with a delicuous sweetness of flavor. Guiltily I shall admit that I probably eat as many as I pick!
My 5-gallon bucket about 3/4 full of lovely plums.
We always make plum jelly which turns a beautiful bright red color - quite delicous on homemade bisquits! We also use much less sugar than the recipe calls for - we like to keep a bit of the tartness. :^)
This week we've been doing peaches too. More peaches than I have ever seen! My right hand was so cramped from peeling and slicing that I was afraid it was going to stiffen up. *whew* thankfully we have all of them put away in the freezer now, awating their fate as pies and cobblers. :^) We made jelly from the peach peels. Yum!
Yesterday was corn-day. Now it's all sliced off and in bags in the freezer.
Today it's apples. 3 big boxes of apples. I think we are going to dehydrate most of them. Should prove interesting.