Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Spicy Dilly Beans

 I have now canned at least 35  of these spicy dilly beans this year and I think that it should be enough for gifts and to last me through the winter. I feel more confident each time I do a recipe and learn as I go....for instance, I learned that the beans have to be at there prime for canning, crisp and snappy or else you'll get shriveled beans which will still taste great but look rather disappointing as I learned on my last batch:)
Next week I will be canning sweet apple sauce from our little orchard of 3 different kinds of apples, also to come I am going to be making peach honey from the leftover skins I saved from my peaches I canned last week I will post that as well but for now enjoy the Dilly's there so crunchy and spicy I love them by themselves or in a dirty martini and of course a bloody Mary... cheers!

Spicy Dilly green beans
Makes about 4 pints so ( I always triple the recipe depending on how many I want, I bought a 22pd crate this year which made 24 cans and then I just bought 10 pds yesterday which made ten quart jars)
2 pds green beans
1/4 cup canning salt, I perfer kosher.
2/1/2cups vinegar
2 1/2 cups water
2 or more teaspoons of cayenne pepper ( depending on how much kick you want)
4 garlic cloves
4 heads fresh dill
Trim ends of green beans. Combine salt, vinegar and waterin a large sauce pot. Bring to boil. Pack beans length wise into hot jars( wash jars and lids in hot and soapy water, then sterilise them in boiling water ten mins, dry lids and wipe jar rims)leaving 1/4 in head space add cayenne pepper garlic and dill to each jar, ladle hot brine into jars over beans, remove air bubbles, add lids process pints and quarts for 10mins in a boiling water caner. Let sit 12-24 hrs to cool and listen for the pops! If your new to canning like I am make sure to  read the step by step process to canning safely.

This recipe from Ball blue book

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Canning, canning and more canning!

So last year was the first time I canned anything in my entire life, I guess I figured canning was an old lady thing to do....and last year when mom asked me to can with her I said sure why not, how hard could it be?
Well after hours of hard work and 3 dozen cans of spicy dilly beans later I thought for sure I would never can another thing in my life. Until the day I opened up one of those cans and enjoyed the fruits of my labor.....OMG! As my sister would say, they were amazing and until I ate the last jar this year I decided to brave it once again and start what would later become an obsession if you will, something I would enjoy doing, something for me and so it starts....this week spicy dill's and spicy green beans.

Spicy Dills

8 pounds 3 to 4 inch long pickling cucumbers

4 cups white vinegar

12 cups water

2/3 cup pickling salt

2 - 3 cloves garlic per jar, peeled and halved,

3 - 4 sprigs of dill per jar

1 -2 chili peppers per jar


Wash cucumbers, and place in the sink (I use the bathtub!) with cold water and lots of ice cubes. Soak in ice water for at least 2 hours but no more than 8 hours. Refresh ice as required. Sterilize 8 (1 quart) canning jars and lids in boiling water for at least 10 minutes.

In a large pot over medium-high heat, combine the vinegar, water, and pickling salt. Bring the brine to a rapid boil.

In each jar, place 2 half-cloves of garlic, 2 - 3 sprigs of dill, 1 - 2 chili peppers then enough cucumbers to fill the jar (about 1 pound). Then add 2 more garlic halves. Fill jars with hot brine. Seal jars, making sure you have cleaned the jar's rims of any residue.

Process sealed jars in a boiling water bath. Process quart jars for 15 minutes.

Store pickles for a minimum of 8 weeks before eating. Refrigerate after opening. Pickles will keep for up to 2 years if stored in a cool dry place
I'll post the spicy green beans later:)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

My Girls..( my chickens)

After being a so call city girl most of my life I have to admit living out in the country is just right for me.
I wouldn't have it any other way, I love the fresh country air and having a lawn that never ends and one of my most favorite things of living out here  is I get to have CHICKENS!!' I love my girls just like they were pets, they garden with me,  they come when there called and best of all they give me such beautiful fresh eggs.
Lulu the white one is my favorite she is very sweet tempered and I have had her the longest. I now have 15 hens and a rooster named Sirly...and that he is. I am raising a gentleman or else he becomes coq co van.

Here are some pics of my sweet and broody girls......oh and in about 16 days I should have some new additions to add to the family my sweet twin silkies are sitting on there eggs so faithfully I just couldn't say no:)

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

This Old Farmhouse...

We bought our 105 year old farmhouse from family about 4 years ago, its on a couple arces and I knew I loved it the first time I lay ed eyes on it. This is the house my husband grew up in and needless to say how special it is for us to now be blessed to raise our son Parker here and to create new memories.  Now unlike a brand new house where all you have to worry about is watering the lawn, our house is a bit more challenging  than that, I can't barley hang curtains with out them falling out of the dry wall! Its small and needs allot more updating...but it also is beautiful and shabby chic to my liking:) I love that its old and imperfect and can't wait to see it grow as our family grows.