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The First Canning of the Year

June 22nd, 2010

Yesterday morning I pulled out the canning jars and starting stocking my pantry for this coming winter. I canned half of my maraschino cherries, today I’ll be canning the rest. It’s a great feeling to start stocking the pantry again for winter. I like the comfort of seeing all the jars lined up on the shelves in the basement, things were looking a bit sparse down there.

I followed this recipe for half the cherries and this recipe for the other half. I also made one quart with sour cherries instead of sweet cherries. I thought it was interesting that the cherries were brined with salt water for a day before canning, much like many of the pickles I make.

I ended up making 4 gallons of maraschino cherries because I ran out of time to pit and dry all those cherries I picked last week. I can’t wait to try these dipped in chocolate or perhaps mixed in with some ice cream. Most of the cherries were dried and tucked away in the pantry as well. I didn’t freeze any since I want to keep the freezer space free for other things like black raspberries and peas.

Have you started stocking the pantry for this coming winter? Anything canned up in jars?

Drowning in Cherries

June 18th, 2010

Yesterday afternoon we went out to my sister’s plot of land and picked cherries from two giant sweet cherry trees. The old trees are huge and they were polluted with cherries. My sister picked, I picked, my mom picked, and Mr Chiots picked as well. We picked and picked, not wanting any to go to waste, but finally we had to call it a night. My sister took home 2 one gallon buckets, my mom took a few home and we ended up with a ton. After picking all afternoon the trees didn’t even look like we’d been there.

We got home late and I’ll be processing cherries all day. I’ll be making maraschino cherries for my Christmas chocolate covered cherries and I’ll be dehydrating lots of them for snacking. I may make some jam, and I may freeze some as well. We also picked tart cherries at my mom’s house and peas that need shelling. Here’s to a busy day filling the pantry with fruit for winter eating.

Are you drowning in anything that’s in season at the moment, filling up the pantry for the winter?

Picking Sour Cherries

June 14th, 2010

Sour cherries are in season here in NE Ohio at the moment. My parents have a small cherry tree on their property that produces more than they need, so they let us pick. Mr Chiots picked about a gallon of cherries on Saturday when we were over for a visit.

My sister & brother-in-law are renting a small plot of land for their garden and it has a big sour and a big sweet cherry tree. We may pick some of those later this week if they don’t need them all.

I love sour cherries. They make delicious pies, cobblers and are fantastic with ham. I think my favorite way to enjoy them is in cherry almond scones. Looks like we’ll have a good amount of cherries tucked away in the freezer for delicious winter scones and cobblers.

Sweet or sour, what’s your favorite kind of cherry?

Reading & Watching

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.