Monday, October 05, 2009

What you get...

Here's what you get from a friday evening feverishly picking grapes, an hour or two picking apples and tomatoes, several trips to the store for more lids and fruit fresh, and a conference weekend:

Lots of dishes
And even more jars of food

Are you amazed?  I am.  We spent ALL day saturday, and a good chunk of sunday finishing everything.  We had to buy peppers and onions for the salsa, but the grapes and apples all came from my parents' house.  

We started friday night picking grapes, saturday morning we started by chopping peppers and onions and tomatoes.  We had enough of everything to make a double batch of salsa, which is about all our big stock pot will hold.  We have 20 pints.    While the salsa was simmering we got started on the grapes, finally at 11 pm, we had all the grapes off the stems, and most of them steamed and turned into juice, by the time we went to bed there was one 5-gallon bucket of de-stemmed grapes left.  Sunday morning we took a break and made swedish pancakes (crepes) with orange butter and powdered sugar- it's a family recipe, and has become a conference tradition.  

After breakfast we put the last of the grapes in the steamers (we own one and borrowed a second).  Once those were going, we started on the apples.  Started may not be the right word since last weekend we did about 30 quarts of applesauce, and these were the apples that we didn't get to then.  My Mister chopped and cooked, and I ran them through the Victorio strainer that we borrowed from my mom (she has all the cool tools). 

My mister does applesauce differently than I do- when I do it, I cook smaller amounts of apples in a pot with just a little water and then run everything through the strainer.  He cooks a lot of apples in a huge pot with a lot of water, and then ladels the apples out with a slotted spoon.  This left us with a huge pot of apple-water when we were done, and after tasting it, we decided to strain the solid bits out and can it.  We had 11 pints (we were out of quart jars at this point) of really tasty apple juice.  

Grape juice totals were 14 1/2 gallons (I love the half gallon sized jars for grape juice!), and 33 quarts.

Applesauce totals were 20 quarts and 50 pints.  We used every pint and quart jar we could find (we even took my son's "happy helper jar" and used it- he now has a "happy helper" bowl), we borrowed more lids from a neighbor since we ran out, and we made an emergency trip to the store sunday afternoon for more fruit fresh. 

I think that works out to 81 pints (I though I counted 82 yesterday so maybe I'm missing one somewhere), 53 quarts, and 14 1/2 gallons.  


Charlotte said...

You are a machine! Way to go Alice!! Someday I'm going to learn how to can. Seriously. It's on my list. I've got to figure it out before all our fruit trees start bearing a lot of fruit!

Sarah said...

Yum! How do you make orange butter.

Alice said...

It's really tough Sarah. You take a chunk of butter (2-4 tbsp) and mix it into a cup of orange juice.


Lisa said...

Yes, I am definitely AMAZED and IMPRESSED (and jealous?). Way to go!

derekstaff said...

Looks brilliant! I'm so jealous.

wordsfromhome said...


Tell your Mister that he did not find the quart jars that were hiding behind my canned beans- There were 5 more empty quarts back there. And do your totals include the 19 qts of peaches and 35 quarts of applesauce I helped with last weekend? Sorry to flake out on you this week, but the trip was fun.

Alice said...

Sarah- I left out the part where you melt it in the microwave- orange butter should be served warm.

Words- I didn't count the canning from last weekend, and I'm glad we didn't totally wipe you out of jars. If you want a few jars of pie apples, you're welcome to them. We could also get a taller ladder and pick what's higher up in the trees for canning pie apples.

You didn't flake out on us- my Mister is great to get in and do the messiest parts of the job, and we have nice talks while we're working. I'm glad you had a good trip.

cbpulsipher said...

If you need a few more jars, call me, I think I have a couple dozen you can have.