Freezer Preserving Tomatoes & Peppers

One of the things I’ve been trying to perfect with gardening this season is preserving our harvest for future use.  Enjoying the fruit of your labor at a later date is one of the many perks of raising your own vegetables and that’s something I’m trying to culminate.

Dehydrating Garden Fresh Herbs

 

We’ve been doing good with preserving our herbs and now, that we have harvesting, dehydrating and storing herbs down, it’s time to do the same with the other vegetables.However, when it comes to preserving your harvest, what often happens is you may only have enough to harvest and eat now and nothing to eat later. So, the now and later plan goes out the window and you’re eating for the now. Of course that all depends on how much we plant and if everything goes well with the vegetables.  Thankfully we’ve been getting an overflow of roma tomatoes.

 

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Once we harvest one or two baskets, it’s time to harvest more.  To keep from becoming overwhelmed, I quickly take care of the batches of tomatoes as we bring them in the house.  I’ll start off by cleaning my harvest and prep them by removing the area the stem was and cutting an X on the bottom of the tomato.  After they’ve been cleaned and prepped I boil them for about 30 minutes and the amount of time depends on how many tomatoes I’m preparing. Many people roast their tomatoes, but with preparing so many, I like to make the task as easy as possible by boiling them.  Once they’ve boiled and cooled off, I remove the skin, put them in the crock pot and after a few hours blend them with a hand blender and add my fresh seasonings.

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Next year’s goal I’d like to learn how to can.  After having a bad experience with canning a few years ago, I gave canning up.  Although, seeing mason jars filled with garden fresh vegetables lined up on shelves will bring back childhood memories of my annual trips to Missouri with my grandma, lined up in my freezer will have to do.

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Another vegetable I’ve freezer preserved are those tasty poblano peppers.  Hubby planted poblano peppers this year and they’ve been plentiful as well, unlike last year.  Last year we got nothing.  Not one darn poblano.  My husband loves when I make stuffed poblano peppers.  They have the best flavor and make great appetizers or a meal when served with rice and some vegetables.

So, I harvest all the poblanos that were ready, cleaned them up and blanched them.  Once they cooled I layed them on a tray and placed them in the freezer to freeze.  After they were frozen I removed them from the freezer and place them all in a large freezer bag.  Freezing them before placing them in a bag assures that they won’t stick together and when I was ready to use them I can grab as many as I need.

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Although we’ve been getting a great harvest, we’ve also had some trouble in the garden.  One being powdery mildew and the other blossom end rot.   Although some of the tomatoes and peppers have been experiencing the blossom end rot, I’ve still been able to get some use out of the vegetables that have been plagued with this problem. Like this variety of pepper mix here that I put together.

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All the peppers that had the blossom end rot, I removed the damaged part and cut up the part that was good, placed them in small portions in freezer bags to use in any meal. I can officially say that this week has been a successful week with freezer preserving tomatoes and peppers.  Have you been preserving any of your garden vegetables and if so, which vegetables and how do you like to preserve your vegetables?

Watch video below

Nicole

Helping Moms power on faith, Tune-In to family life, Flip through to do list, Turnip in the garden & tell you what’s on the Menu. Nicole is a wife, mother of 3 and a Chorkie. Blogging and vlogging about the things that she enjoys in life, her family, cooking, gardening, decorating, planning, crafts/diy, thrifting, giving roadside finds new life and more.

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Taking Our Gardening Skills To The Next Level-Companion Gardening

It’s absolutely gorgeous outside!  We’ve finally taken off the plastic and allowed the garden to get some fresh air.

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This year we’re learning to step up our gardening game with companion gardening.  We did a little bit of this last year,  but this year we’re taking it serious.  Companion gardening is like those symbiotic relationships we talked about.  Pretty much like those relationships we have with one another.  In some relationships one person benefits and in others, both parties get something put of the deal.

With gardening this is beneficial to us (the gardener) because it helps eliminate buying or using pest or disease control products.  It also helps us insure we have a successful gardening season.

Since we decided to do this,  we have to make sure before we plant in a gardening bed we find out which plants are beneficial.  Before we were willy nilly with planting as we were with our gardening budget.

In this raised bed below we planted lettuce & spinach. These are companion plants so they will do well together. We still have a few empty spots which we plan to balance out with more spinach and lettuce. 

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On an average I buy 2-3 bags of lettuce per week from Aldi. When I pick it up at Costco it’ll last us approximately 2-3 weeks.  I’ll separate the spinach into freezer bags and freeze it in order to preserve it.  So, dedicating an entire bed to lettuce and spinach will definitely save us. 

Yesterday I picked up some French Marigolds to plant next to all of our tomatoes.

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In four of our raised beds we planted 2 tomato plants and 1 pepper plant.  These are also companions hence our reason for putting them together.  Last year we had the tomatoes all in one bed.  It was very hard to get to the tomatoes to pick. We decided to spread them out and also keep the same pattern in each bed.  So if the tomatoes are in square 2 of box 3, they are in the same place in box 5. 

Daily we’ve been adding more veggies to the mix and excited to see the progress of our garden and our gardening skills.

Nicole

Helping Moms power on faith, Tune-In to family life, Flip through to do list, Turnip in the garden & tell you what’s on the Menu. Nicole is a wife, mother of 3 and a Chorkie. Blogging and vlogging about the things that she enjoys in life, her family, cooking, gardening, decorating, planning, crafts/diy, thrifting, giving roadside finds new life and more.

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Home & Garden: Gladiolus blooming and the veggie garden

I’d like to start this sentence off with, Gladiolus are my favorite blooms. But I’ve said that about many of my other perennials. Gladiolus are one of my favorites too 😉

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This one is the second one that’s bloomed and I would have had many more if it weren’t for those silly rabbits. 

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This white one is growing up through my Phlox.  I don’t know when and why I planted the Phlox in the same spot.  I’m still scratching my head on that one.

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My husband broke down the large raised bed this weekend.  So, now we have a total of 9 – 4×4 raised beds.  He was so anxious to break it down and now he has a head start for next year.

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I caught a glimpse of the Chocolate Bell Peppers today. Can’t wait to suff and eat them. 

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We’ve been harvesting tomatoes like it’s crazy! That round yellow thingy is some sort of cucumber. Not sure if my husband picked it to soon, but we’ll have to do some goggling before we pick the others.  Oh, speaking of cucumbers.  They have been doing awesome too!!!! Loving them as a snack with lime juice. I’m eating at least 2-3 per day after harvesting them.

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That’s pretty much it for this week. It’s hard to believe that summer will soon be coming to a close.  I saw some trees today with some orange leaves.  I’m not ready for it to end 🙁

Has there been weather changes in your area and if so, what changes have you seen?

Nicole

Helping Moms power on faith, Tune-In to family life, Flip through to do list, Turnip in the garden & tell you what’s on the Menu. Nicole is a wife, mother of 3 and a Chorkie. Blogging and vlogging about the things that she enjoys in life, her family, cooking, gardening, decorating, planning, crafts/diy, thrifting, giving roadside finds new life and more.

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Home & Garden: 10 ways to use those tomatoes from the garden

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We’ve been harvesting plenty of tomatoes and cucumbers. Oh…I’m loving my cucumbers with lime juice. A delicious snack. 

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I’ve also been thinking of the many ways we can use the tomatoes.

1. Salsa
2. Spaghetti Sauce
3. Chili
4. On sandwiches
5. In salads
6. Cherry tomatoes as a snack
7. In pasta salad
8. Fried green tomatoes of course
9. On a homemade pizza
10. Stuffed tomatoes

This Sunday my grandma and father came by.  My grandma is gangsta!  She came over and pointed out which of my Yucca plants she wanted a piece of. Remember me cleaning my Yuccas the beginning of the summer?  Her taking a couple pieces helped me thin them out a bit. 

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Back to the tomatoes….What other ways would you use tomatoes? 

Nicole

Helping Moms power on faith, Tune-In to family life, Flip through to do list, Turnip in the garden & tell you what’s on the Menu. Nicole is a wife, mother of 3 and a Chorkie. Blogging and vlogging about the things that she enjoys in life, her family, cooking, gardening, decorating, planning, crafts/diy, thrifting, giving roadside finds new life and more.

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Garden to Table: Using a couple new seasonings on fried green tomatoes

Today I decided to use some new seasonings I picked up from the store. One of my staple seasonings is lemon pepper. I use lemon pepper in most of my meals. Nearly all of them -__-. Last week I picked up some new seasonings. I enjoy trying new seasonings and when I find some that I really enjoy I stick to them.

Yesterday I used these same seasonings on some baked chicken I made for dinner. With the multiple seasons layered and married together….. It was delicious!

We had some more tomatoes to harvest from the garden

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After slicing up the tomatoes

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I seasoned them with Weber’s Beer Can Chicken, McCormick’s Grill Mates Molasses Bacon and Lemon Pepper.

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I also used these same ingredients in my flour and cornmeal mix. Poured extra virgin olive oil in a skillet. Just enough to coat the bottom, breaded my sliced tomatoes in the mix and placed them in the hot oil.

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The only thing you would need to be concerned about is the oil turning dark quicker from all the different spices in the seasonings. If you’re well seasoned in making fried green tomatoes, you may see this as a plus. One of the reasons this would be a benefit is that it helps darken the tomatoes when using fresh oil.

Have you used any of the seasonings before?

Nicole

Helping Moms power on faith, Tune-In to family life, Flip through to do list, Turnip in the garden & tell you what’s on the Menu. Nicole is a wife, mother of 3 and a Chorkie. Blogging and vlogging about the things that she enjoys in life, her family, cooking, gardening, decorating, planning, crafts/diy, thrifting, giving roadside finds new life and more.

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