Fall harvest season is full blast right now!

Harvest season is full blast right now. Started out with our Home Grown New Mexico ‘Jam On’ class where we made a Strawberry-balsamic jam and a terrific Blueberry jam.

Himrod grapes-yum!

Then the grapes ripened-ate lots and dried some into raisins for later.

bread n butter pickles

The cucumbers ripened so fast I was making lots of pickles. First I made bread and butter pickles, then cornichon pickles and then dill pickles-crock, refrigerator and canned. Must have about 30 jars+ and now the 5 gallon crock is full where I am fermenting some with salt brine. After I was bored with pickles,  I made some sweet pickle relish which I haven’t tasted yet. Will probably make more of that with the giant cucumbers I miss when looking for little ones. So far I’ve made pickles with Jody, Nick and Elodie.

peach jam and raisins

Then I bought 20 lbs of peaches from the Farmer’s Market and Mernie and I made 3 different peach jams.

9tomato sauce-finished in bags

Now the tomatoes are coming in and I’m starting to make the raw tomato sauce that I freeze in gallon plastic freezer bags. Later in November after I recover from harvesting, I will take them out of the freezer and make different pasta sauces like puttenesca, marinara, penne alla vodka and good ole spaghetti sauce.


Potatoes dug out just in the nick of time!

Potatoes dug out just in the nick of time!

Soon I will harvest potatoes too.

2013-part of the fall honey harvest

and we will harvest honey from the bee hive.

Of course then there is all I take to the Farmer’s Market that I harvest every week-tomatoes, eggplants, shishito peppers, beans, tomatillos and sometimes rhubarb, kale and chard when I have the room on the tables. Phew! Busy time of year!

The best part of it all is I haven’t bought any vegetables in the store since early July and I’ll have a full pantry for winter when harvest season is done.

Pickle class a success!

pickle class

Duskin with picklesPickle making class went well today. We processed 15 lbs of cucumbers into about 15 pint jars. Pictured above are some of the finished pickles. Duskin, who co-taught the class with me brought his giant pressure cooker. We didn’t use it as a pressure cooker this time but instead filled the big pot with water to sterilize the jars and to use for processing the pickles using the water bath method. I brought my camp stove to make the brine and syrup. It was a beautiful day for making pickles outside instead of over a hot stove. After a short talk on the how to process food safely, everybody got involved—Duskin sterilized the jars, while the students cut up the cucumbers and garlic, mixed up the brine and syrup, added all the ingredients and cucumbers into the hot sterilized jars as they came out of the pot, poured the brine and syrup, wiped the lips of the jars and put the lids/caps on them. Then we put them back into the hot water and brought the water back to boiling and adjusted the processing time for our high altitude. While we were waiting for them to finish processing, Duskin showed them around Milagro Community Garden. When the pickles were done, we pulled them out of the hot water and let them cool enough and then the students took home a jar of each type of pickle. Good job folks!

Here is the one handout that wasn’t available today that I told the students would be available tonight:

Preparing and Canning Fermented and Pickled Foods

Here are the handouts that were given out in class:

General Canning Information

Duskin’s Favorite Pickle Recipes

Lastly, here is the Lemon Dill Refrigerator Pickle recipe that Randy asked for:

Fresh-Packed Refrigerator Lemon Dill Pickles

Food Preservation Class TODAY-canning pickles


Do you have too many cucumbers? Do you want to learn how to make pickles? It is much easier than you think! Today from 12 noon – 3 pm I will be teaching a preservation class on pickling for Home Grown New Mexico.

pickle_cornichonThose who show up will learn how to make two types of pickles-bread and butter pickles and dill pickles. We will review canning safety at high altitudes and then make the pickles using the water bath method. This is a hands-on class.

Pickle Making Class- 12 noon-3pm

Milagro Community Garden – located in parking lot behind:

2481 Legacy Ct, Santa Fe, NM