Lots of Preserving

8/9:  Today we chopped down the kiwi (or most of it).  It was just out of control and messy and stinky.  The kiwi were fun to pick, but they never seemed to get eaten much.  I think we forgot about them sitting out there in the cold garage.  We left a little alive and may let it start growing up again more slowly.  We’ll see.  Hopefully, the one that we cut completely back was not the one male bush in the area.

8/10:  Today I decided it was a good day to take a look at the vinegar that has been brewing for a while.  Whenever we have leftover wine, I throw it into one of the crocks with the “vinegar mother” and let it sit for a while.

white wine vinegar mother

The red wine vinegar was fantastic, it was tawny and sweet – almost like a sweet sherry. This might be because we don’t drink much red wine, so I probably used the berry wine that I had made a couple of years back (it was a great way to use up all of that jelly I had made during a family visit where I needed to stay busy.

finished red wine vinegar

The white wine vinegar was not as great, it could be the dandelion wine I was using up, or maybe I left it too long (I’m not great on following all of the directions to long term projects.  Oh well, the mother looks very healthy, so I’ll just start a new batch.  I have an extra mother if anyone in the Portland area is interested in having one to use.

8/11:  Today is blueberry muffin day.  I hope I can find the recipe from the bakery in Portland.  I love that place.  We stopped yesterday and bought some Como bread for dinner with fruit, cheese, and salami.  yummy.

I also need to finish the fermented fruit syrup and the strawberry and kiwi jams.  Then it’s off for more painting and pressure washing.  I need to clean a few of the screens and clean two last gutters.  Joe put up gutter guards on the high gutters to help keep out some of the maple and fir garbage that gets into them.

8/12:  Didn’t get the jams done yet – maybe tomorrow.  We are hitting the outside chores hard since summer is leaving us too quickly.  Joe finished pressure washing and the gutter cleaning today and started rebuilding the outdoor area for the meat chickens – I’ll get some photos tomorrow.  I finished priming the section of railing on the deck and the picket fence, fixed the drip system on the deck, pruned the Budlia back and cleaned up some other projects.

8/13:  All of the jams are finished.   I ended up with 6 jars of strawberry, 12 jars of kiwi (from the one we just cut way back) and 5 jars of a kiwi with cranberries and wild blackberries (yum).

jam day

I also started a new batch of fermented syrup with the leftover kiwi.

8/14:  Yesterday was hot (91) and today is supposed to be hotter.  I decided to harvest some of the carrots and beets and went out to check on the potatoe bed that had pretty much died.  We ended up with quite a few potatoes – many of them are pretty small.  I think the bed suffered from lack of water rather than the moles that we thought had attacked them.  I may replant some and try for a second harvest.

We also just found our first zucchini of the season.  This one is picked and ready for dinner tonight.

the first zucchini of 2010 (photo by Noah)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s