Preserving Food, Food and More Food. Tis the Season!

Hi every one, Tis the end of the week for the week of 8-18-13. WOW time has flown! We have been busy with the garden and canning season as usual. We tried a few new things this year! and are planning a few more new tries for food preservation.  One thing I did was with onions.  On the Farm here we cook with lots and lots of onions. More times than not we end up dicing them and adding them into casseroles, meat loaf, soups and stews, chilis, etc. I figured since we dice them any ways I took my white onions i pulled from the garden and I shredded them in the food processor. I then put them in freezer backs (double bagged), and hand sucked out all the air for longer freezer life (this was last Sunday, and our local market was closed so could not purchase more Vacuum seal bags like we normally use. At any rate, so now we have a shelf in the door of the freezer full of finely diced white onions out of our garden. When placing in the bags for freezing i did not measure the volumes out, but I would be guessing each bag to be a cup to a cup and a half.  It worked out great, i am very pleased with the results. I will certainly do the same next year with Vacuum seal bags being the only change. I used a bag the other night, and after being frozen they did not turn a funny color or anything like that, they were great. A little soft yes, but for cooking with who cares, as they get soft when cooked any ways.

 And on to other food storages; My wife went to her parents farm up the road and got their Pears and Apples.  Our farm being as young as it is Only 3 years old now, our fruit trees are in, but are still very young and small and not really producing any kind of fruit yet.  Luckily both sets of my wifes and my parents have farms, fruit trees, and we have tons of rescources to draw on for fruit that once they put up all they need would usually just goto waste any ways. So, long story short, she brought home and canned 15 quarts of pears. Not my favorites personally, but the rest of the family enjoys pears, so if it keeps them happy in the winter then by all means. She cans them in a light syrup. Apples will be peeled, cored and processed after church today. Wife and daughter wants apple sauce. I personally really enjoy canning apples in round slices, and spicing them. MMMM MMMM. But….. having a feeling i will get out-voted and applesauce it will be.  Regardless, we have 3 large boxes of apples for which ever, and my fathers apple trees are starting to drop apples too, so will end up with another 5-6 boxes from him as well.  Extra apples, pears, peelings, cores, left over syrups, etc all goto the pig. All the sugar and such makes a very very happy pig, and fattens them up nicely so makes for happy happy farmers as well.

Yesterday we took a drive to Newport, my favorite coastal town here in Oregon. It’s Tuna season, and alot of fishing ships will pull into Newport Bay, dock up, set up for sale signs, and sell fresh caught Tuna, crab and Salmon right there off the ship. Just bled out, not frozen at all. Doesn’t get any fresher than that! Literally handed to you from the fisherman that caught it an hour or two ago.  So while we were down there, the kids of course went to the beach, built sand castles, played in the ocean, flew kites, and all that good fun stuff. Then we went to the Dock at the Bay, and bought 2 Large fresh Tuna.  Brought the fish home, processed them, and canned them. I don’t remember the exact recipe, but in basic rememberance of it, for each pint jar you fill it to the bottom ring line with Tuna, and add 1/2 teasoon salt, and 1 teaspoon olive oil Per every PINT jar.  Out of 2 Large Tuna, we ended up with 26 pints of canned Tuna.  Yes it ais a bit more expensive buying it that way, costs more than just store bought tuna, but number one we still know we are canning our own and not relying on other people or sources, number 2 we know exactly what is in the tuna we eat with no preservatives or chemicals or radiation or the like, and number 3 home canned fresh tuna is AMAZING!  If you have never had fresh off the Dock Albacore and home canned with out being watered down, chemicals added, cooked to almost a paste, you are missing out. When its home canned it tastes just like a nice Tuna Steak! Its firm, big and chunky, not overly salty, you get more of it per jar, and the taste is just freshly oceanic and delicious, it is to die for! 

So that is our update for today. We here at Helmig Farms thank you for taking the time to read our blog updates. A toaste to you all wishing you happy farming, wonderful living, and comfortable surviving. Thanks every one

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