I think that’s the last of it. I think – I hope – I just picked my last tomatoes of the season. Our garden didn’t look that big when Andy planted it, but it provided us with plenty of produce over the past couple months. We planted 8 tomato plants, a row of bell peppers and a row of onions. We also planted 2 zucchini plants and 2 cucumber plants. From that, we ate a lot of zucchini bread. Seriously, I made over 18 loaves – many of which I gave away. I also taught my husband to like sauteed zucchini. I ate a lot of veggie wraps and cooked with our fresh produce. Much of it made it’s way to our freezer. Here is a list of what I currently have in our freezer and in the pantry, thanks to a summer of fresh produce.
I froze 10 cups of grated zucchini. I grated my zucchini and froze it in 2 cup bags because each recipe for zucchini bread calls for 2 cups. This way, I can easily thaw one bag each time I want to make fresh zucchini bread. We had lots of zucchini that grew to be very large very quickly – as you can see one next to Nathan.
I froze 10 pints of blueberries. The blueberries I flash froze and put in large gallon bags. I didn’t grow the blueberries but bought them for $1 a pint at the grocery store. They are delicious! I wish I had bought more.
I froze 8 cups of blackberries. The blackberries were from a church member’s bushes that she gave me for free. Like the blueberries, I flash froze them and put them in a large bag in the freezer.
I canned 13 jars of blackberry jam using this recipe. I gave several jars away but I still have plenty of jars to enjoy on my toast this year.
I froze 5 diced onion bundles. I like to dice the onions ahead of time into these onion bundles so I can quickly toss them into a pan of hamburger when I’m cooking dinner. It allows me to get my hands dirty once and saves me prep time.
I froze 8 cups of diced bell peppers. I diced the peppers and flash froze them before transferring them into several quart bags in the freezer. I really like sauteing peppers with onions (and sometimes corn and black beans) and eating them in veggie wraps. It’s my new favorite!
I froze 18 cups of sweet corn. One of Andy’s students shared some sweet corn from their family farm with us. Growing up in Texas, I do love the good sweet corn that we get up North! I also had fond memories of my Mom freezing corn as I cut the long strips off the cob. I followed the directions in my handy Ball Blue Book.
Most of my time was spent working with tomatoes. I canned over 40 pints of salsa using my Aunt Renee’s recipe. We have already eating several jars and given several away. We have 30 pints of salsa remaining in our basement pantry.
When I got tired of canning salsa, I decided to try my hand at fresh tomato sauce. I made 12 cups of tomato sauce in my slow cooker and froze it in quart bags – 2 cups of sauce in each bag. This was my first time making tomato sauce in the slow cooker and it was incredibly easy! I made it up as I went along but the results were all good!
It’s a varied assortment but I love having a stocked freezer with so many different – and fresh – vegetables and fruits. I’m not as well stocked as my Amish neighbors, I’m sure, but every year I do a bit more. It makes my happy to be preserving fresh food for my family! Did you have a garden this summer? What’s in your freezer?