A Woman's Perspective On The Times We Live In


June 8, 2013

Fruits of My Labor

     Sometimes I just have to escape the turmoil of the day and immerse myself in simpler, more organic tasks.  So this last Saturday afternoon seemed the perfect time to do something with the potato yield from my garden.  Since PLW and I love soups and stews in the winter months, having canned potatoes on hand is a definite plus.


     I don't know about you, but I can buy a bag of potatoes and no matter how careful I am to preserve them, they always go bad before I use them all.  And since we had a healthy crop from the garden this year, I didn't want to waste them and decided that canning would be the way to go.
     It's really quite simple .... the hardest part, and the most exhausting, is the peeling process.  But luckily, PLW sharpened my knife, which made a HUGE difference.  He even volunteered to help peel the last 10 pounds.


       I quartered the potatoes and put them in a 5-gallon pot on the stove to boil.  Once they'd boiled for about 10 minutes, they were ready to put in my pint jars.  I like to run my jars through a wash/heat cycle in the dishwasher, where they remain heated until I'm ready to use them.  The lids simmer in a pot of water on top of the stove, and the rings are washed and left in my sink of hot water.  It can be a little tricky getting the timing right on the dishwasher, peeling and boiling, but it worked out perfectly to start my jars in the dishwasher as I began peeling the potatoes.


     Once the potatoes have boiled for 10 minutes, I drain them and begin stuffing them into the pint jars.  I then add 1/2 teaspoon of salt to each jar, and ladle in boiling water, which was in a separate pot on the stove.  You are supposed to leave 1" headspace on the jar, and I have a tendency to overfill the jars, which causes them to boil over a little in the pressure canner.  (So do what I say, not as I do).  You seal them with a lid and ring and stack the pints in the pressure canner, canning them for 35 minutes at 10 pounds pressure.


     Once you remove the pressure canner from the fire and allow the pressure to drop to zero, you can remove the pint jars and allow them to stand for 12-24 hours before storing.  There's something about hearing those lids pop that brings such satisfaction!  And now we have perfectly cooked potatoes available for our winter soups, or potato salad, or ready to heat up if we just want some good 'ol mashed potatoes.  
     And the best part of the whole process was that I didn't have time to think about the news or the state of the world .... it was a welcome break and the rewards were so much greater!

Psalm 128:2     "You will eat what your hands have produced; you will be happy and prosperous."



2 comments:

  1. Certainly a different post for you, but it works for me ! Two days ago I spent hours in my garden tending to the onions, sweet potatoes, pickles, etc. Halfway through I realized that these plants ..... IF CARED FOR ! .... like the book says - " toil not " in the case of the sparrow etc. It dawned on me - that it is true of us as well ! IF our Father truly loves us, cares for us ( and we acknowledge that HE does ! ) ... then we don't have to toil so much ( fret, worry agonize ) either ! So, that respite in my garden lets me fret, worry, agonize less about the IRS, AP debacle, Benghazi etc. Not that I am ignoring it - by no means ! - but we have a Father that can take care of it if we give Him thanks by " GROWING " in His WORD !
    RB

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    1. Thanks! If you look at some of my earlier blogs (like a year ago) you will find more of these kinds of "survival" posts; then I felt a strong urging to talk more about the "salvation" part of my calling. I just listen to whatever the prompting of the Holy Spirit tells me and go with it! There are days that I'm thinking, "Really, God .... you want me to talk about potatoes today?" This post was in response to such a message. I never know what direction He will send me!

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