As I'm using up our canned goods this year, I'm taking mental note of the things that are good, and I know I definitely want to can (and grow!) next year. It's all been a "mental" note, so I thought it might be good to gather all those thoughts roaming around my brain in one area so when next spring rolls around and its time to think about planting my garden, I have some idea of what to plant! Definites to can next year: ** APPLES (this happens in the fall), but means that I want to look into better ways to keep the bugs off our apple trees so we have more produce come harvest time -I have really been enjoying the applesauce I canned and froze--its almost gone! --my niece loves it too! -apple pie in a jar is a great easy dessert or gift to give away
** TOMATOES I didn't grow any tomatoes last year (I usually get them from the Furleighs, but their crop was eaten by deer), so I'm going to do a bunch of tomatoes next year. -spaghetti sauce (I froze this, but would like to can it, so it isn't as watery next year -whole tomatoes --I use these for stews and chilis, and sadly have almost used up my supply this year...that happened last year too..I need to go a little overboard with tomatoes, because we eat them quickly -tomato sauce
** CUCUMBERS I didn't grow cucumbers last year either, but I canned pickles for the first time with cucumbers from the Furleighs. I just opened up my first can this week, and YUMMMY! I will be making a lot of pickles next year, they turned out great! Its a great snack and who doesn't love pickles??
** GREEN BEANS This was the first thing that I canned 2 years ago, and I did a bunch this year. I do spicy dilly beans, and I love them. I will be growing them in my garden again, and canning a bunch more.
** CAULIFLOWER AND CARROTS I didn't grow either last year, but these 2 are on my list this year. I really want to make a canned mixed vegetable, I know I will eat them.
** PEPPERS I canned hot spicy peppers this year, which I have used in cooking, but I really want to make some pepper jam. That seems to be a huge hit at parties and get togethers.
That's my list of things to can and grow so far, but I've also got a list of things I want to grow ourselves. My garden is going to look a bit different this year (maybe bigger!).
POTATOES ONIONS GARLIC (didn't get this planted this fall--hopefully I can still make it work in the spring...) BROCCOLI LEAFY GREENS (KALE, SPINACH, ARUGULA, ETC) HERBS (lavendar, dill, basil, mint, thyme, sage, and rosemary)
Still in question--they take up so much room, and I'm not sure we eat enough of them, plus I can get a lot of them from the Furleighs right next door. Melons Summer squash Winter squash
I plan to put up corn and strawberries (more pureed than whole) again next year, but again, will get those from the Furleighs.
I have a lot of goals for canning next year. The beauty is I did a lot last year, so I have some experience and things should go smoother this year... but I'm always looking for new recipes, so let me know if you have any!