our favorite recipes for preserving the garden bounty

i often find it's difficult to sit down for even just a bit during the summertime to share my thoughts with you in this space. with these august days oh so full in the garden & in the kitchen, i'm lucky if i can even fit in a shower! 

but with rain coming in & a decently checked off to-do list, i thought i would carve out a moment or two to sit with you & share a handful of my favorite recipes for putting up the garden bounty. it's what's on my mind right now as i am sure it's on yours, too. there's always a basket of produce waiting on me, which is indeed such a gift. 

i've blogged about most of these recipes, but it's always nice to have one place to go & find my most used recipes. happy canning & preserving! 

- my easiest, go-to tomato sauce: this sauce can be used with pasta or on pizza. it's very versatile. the recipe is a slow-cooker recipe, but i've also cooked it on low atop the stovetop. 

- heather's salsa: i've made lots of jars of this salsa this summer & we love it. i look forward to popping open a jar of this fresh tomato goodness with tortilla chips in the dead of winter. 

- the most delicious sweet pickles: i love this simple cucumber sweet pickle recipe from smitten kitchen. it's straight-forward & easy. simply pop them in the fridge when you're finished - they'll last for a couple of months. 

- pickle everything with this go-to recipe: okra, sugar snap peas & more... i use this recipe as my go-to for quick pickling almost everything from the garden.

- canned dilly beans: we love dilly beans! can them & enjoy them in the winter with a good meat & cheese plate. don't forget a good loaf of homemade bread, too.

- our family favorite cucumbers & onions: this is a summer potluck go-to & a favorite dish among my family. simply combine ingredients & let them mingle for just a bit before serving. it's a delicious, fresh addition to almost any meal from grilled burgers to salad. 

- chop & freeze almost everything from the garden: to freeze berries, peppers, fresh corn & more, simply wash & chop (if necessary) your produce. lay on a baking sheet & allow to freeze completely. once thoroughly frozen, place in a labeled plastic freezer bag & store in the deep freeze until ready to use. tip: i keep a deep freeze supply list on clipboard hanging from the wall next to our deep freeze so we don't lose track of what's inside.

- my favorite crustless zucchini pie: skinnytaste's zucchini pie is a favorite of ours. i made a few for freezing this summer with our extra zucchini & they will make the perfect quick & affordable dinner this winter. to process the zucchini, i pulled out our food processor, which makes the work much easier.

- my favorite basil pesto: i love this basil pesto recipe because it does not use nuts, which cost a small fortune when you're processing the quantity of pesto we do. once my pesto is made, i freeze it in small jars & ice cube trays. once the trays are frozen, i remove each cube & place them all in a labeled plastic freezer bag.

let me know if you use any of our go-to recipes for processing & preserving your garden bounty!



Kristen Smith said...

This is just awesomeness! Thanks for sharing! I have canned tons of your pasta sauce this summer. My husband and I love it. Thank you for making life simple.

Alexandra Kloch said...

A quick blanch and shock is best to keep your lovely produce fresh green and ready to get cooked!!!! Most all pre frozen food has been B&Sed!!! And for corn ESP, a Blanche and shock prevents further conversion of the sugars to starch! Thus ensuring the best most summer tasting corn in winter! I'm a former execute chef that stays home w my kiddo now! It makes me so SO happy that more people our age have discovered the joys of canning! I grew up making tomato sauce and pickles every summer and so it holds a place dear to my heart!!! I picked 136 pounds of tomatoes yesterday, I'm def gonna make a batch of that salsa!

Kelly said...

Your tomato canning process has been a game changer for me.... Next up is the zuchinni pie..

Sara said...

I can't wait to try these recipes! Thank you for this great compilation. One question....do you bake the zucchini pie in a disposable pie tin and then freeze it?

anoushkasofia said...

Brilliant! Thanks ever so much! Can't seem to eat enough cucumbers at the moment (invasion in the veggie garden and I'm the only one in the household to eat them...) so I will make pickles!

Natalie freeman said...

Sara - Yes!

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