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Last Days of Harvest

September 8, 2010

The farmers are nearly done with harvest, the kids are back in school, and I have a substantial number of words written in my newest manuscript (Young Adult Science Fiction? I must be INSANE because no one writes these anymore, but oh well… Sometimes, you just have to follow your muse). Oh, yeah…and I FINALLY have some NEW ITEMS in the shop for you. More to come over the next few days and weeks.

Meet Lizzie. Remember her? She’s my baby, only three years old, and she started preschool yesterday. Granted, she only goes to class two days a week, but this is life-altering stuff for me. I’ve been at home with at least one child clinging to my legs for the last six years. I feel just plain odd without Lizzie bringing me her Ariel doll every few minutes for a quick wardrobe change.

But, here we are! Finally, I have new items up in the shop, and my new manuscript looks like a book when I print it off, and my pantry is slowly filling up with jars of apple butter and pre-cooked beans.

Seriously, canned beans are saving my budget! I prefer to cook my own beans because I dislike the tin taste to store-bought beans. Problem: who the heck has time to cook those beans for non bean-centric meals? And what do you do with the leftovers?

I know lots of people prefer to freeze their leftovers, but I don’t own a microwave, so thawing is an issue. A year ago, I started cooking my beans and then pressure canning them in batches of 4-8 at a time. One pound bag of beans yields four pint jars. Soak beans overnight, cook for half an hour, then hot pack in jars. Process in pressure canner for 70 minutes at 11 pounds of pressure. Easy.

My mom just bought me a smaller pressure cooker…one that actually fits on my stove, which means I can cook the beans at home instead of running next door to use the church’s kitchen. Yes, I’m happy about that. 🙂

Chili night! With Cornbread! And chocolate chip cookies made with weevil-free flour! What are you having for dinner? Are you ready for Fall foods as well?

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