Thursday, May 3, 2012

Grow your own

The warm winter and early spring meant that we got an almost four week head start in planting the garden and being able to use plants we already had planted, like strawberries. 

We've had a bumper crop of strawberries and we've got potatoes, onions, carrots, radishes, spinach, Swiss chard, cabbage, broccoli, peas, cilantro, basil, and more in our regular garden plots, which we were able to cover over with some of our rich compost and straw that we had left over from the sewer pipe replacement job we had done in our front yard this past winter.  And last night Sparky planted some of the tomato plants we got at a local nursery.  The garden then, should be gangbusters this year.

Speaking of strawberries, the local strawberries are finally in at area stores and produce stands, so I bought 6 quarts to make into jam.  I combined them with a quart of ones we had grown, a bag of organic raspberries, the juice and zest of one lemon and I made strasselberry jam:

After making two batches I still had berries left over so I added some sugar and cooked them down a bit and I made strawberry syrup, thick rich bursting with flavor syrup:

There's lots more canning, jam making, and pickling to be done this summer, so I'll try to keep you posted about it when I do it.  And if you're curious as to why I do this kind of stuff in today's modern world where I could just as easily buy this stuff in a store, the fact is I don't want to buy it in a store because I don't know what's in the foods they sell and I don't want to give them any more of my money than I have to.  I'd rather buy local or from local people and put it up myself, it's my way of saying, "Fuck you!" to the corporations and to factory farms.


Anonymous said...

I find that all the gardening, canning, and beer making is a perfect way to balance out the amazing/frustrating technical aspects of modern life.

gmb said...

Sometimes I fantasize about leaving the city, and buying a house on an acre or more and getting a big fence, a big dog, and a big gun. Ok, near a train station so I can continue to work for the fucking man until I pay off my (future) mortgage. Sometimes. And seeing your jam makes me think that maybe I need to move past fantasy.

Anonymous said...

Strasselberry jam! Is it the most delicious thing that has ever happened?