Sunday, July 19, 2009

Fresh Peas!

Saturday I had been able to get a large quantity of fresh peas from a local Amish farmer. In fact, I got about 24 litres of them. It took over 4 hours of shelling for me to finish, and even though I gave a friend a 3 litre basket for his kids, I still ended up having 10 bags of peas (2 cups per bag).

I also shredded a bunch of zuchinni for winter. I froze them in bags of 2 cups each, so that when I do my baking I will be able to just grab a bag. Normally I shred then freeze on cookie sheet in little one cup mounds, however, since I was given a box of small bags from my local butcher the last time I had purchsed 100 pounds of hamburger I chose to use those instead.

At the same farm, I got some of these wonderful wax (yellow) beans. They made a great addition to the pastry covered shepherds pie I made for dinner. The rest I blanched and froze for winter.

To blanch beans for freezing, you must choose fresh, firm vegetables, wash and prepare them the way you want them. I chose to just snap them in approximately 1 inch pieces. Then, put them in a wire rack or in a cheesecloth bag, and dip them in a large pot of boiling water for 30 seconds. Then, put them in a second large pot of boiling water, wait for it to return to a full boil, and time them for exactly 3 minutes.

Next, take them out, and put immediately into a bath of ICE water, to lock in the flavours. Drain, spread out on a cookie sheet and place in the freezer to surface freeze. After approximately an hour, shake them loose and place in freezer bags.

Never try to blanch more than one pound at a time, or over cook them, as they will loose their flavour or go really mushy.

1 comment:

  1. Jewelz, I'm drooling over all these fresh veggies! Great posts, keep them coming!