Monthly Archives: October 2013

Rufus Dragon versus Halloween

The year we did this…

rufus dragon

Seriously People?

rufus dragon

Just let me the hell out of here.

The Dragon not only managed to ditch the costume once he got outside, but he tore into the faces of my Jackolanterns.  About 20 minutes before Trick or Treat.  Happy Halloween People!

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Filed under growdammit, Random, Rufus Dragon

Adventures in Canning

A couple of weeks ago, Farmer Ted and I harvested all of the tomatoes we had left on our dying vines and made green tomato chow-chow.  If you don’t remember that, click here.  Then, a week later, I used some of our remaining peppers to make spicy pepper chow-chow.  Since we only had about 12 jars worth of ingredients, I attempted it by myself and things went fairly well.  This past week, a hard frost was in our forecast so Ted picked all of the remaining peppers and broke down the garden.  Instead of making more chow-chow, I decided to try my hand at hot pepper jelly.  Since Ted had to work, I figured once again I would just do it myself.  The recipe looked fairly simple.  Pureed peppers, apple cider vinegar, sugar and pectin.  Bring the first 3 to a boil, add the pectin, return to a boil for a minute and remove from heat.  Pour in jars, process in the bath for 10 minutes and Voila…hot pepper jelly.  Piece of cake.

Here is how it really went…

I prepped the peppers and got all of the other ingredients and canning utensils together.  I washed and sterilized a dozen jars.  I started 2 large pots of boiling water to use for the bath.  I mixed the peppers, vinegar and sugar together and set it to boil.  No worries.

Then, I realized that 12 jars weren’t going to be enough…

So, I turned the pepper mixture down to low, ran to the basement for more jars, washed them, threw them in the oven to sterilize and turned the pepper mix back up to high.  It boiled, and I added pectin.   I’ve totally got this.

Then, I realized that I forgot to grab clean dish rags to be able to handle the hot jars…

So I ran down to the basement to grab some and ran back up to the kitchen.  Just in time to see the pepper jelly boil over.  And by that, I mean it geysered out of the pot like Old Faithful.  There was pepper jelly all over the stove.  Burning.  There was pepper jelly all over the counter from when I yanked it off to remove it from the heat.  There was pepper jelly all over the floor.  There was pepper jelly all over me.  This might remind our loyal readers about how I’m a hazard in the kitchen.  It was a hot mess.  Literally.  That shit was hot.

Once I realized that I didn’t have any third degree burns…

I started canning the jelly.  I got the first batch in the bath, and started to clean up some of the mess.  Rufus Dragon wanted to help, so he licked the floor.  Once.  Then he whimpered and  headed straight for his water bowl and drank a gallon.  Thankfully the rest of the exercise went well, and I celebrated a battle well fought with a glass or two of wine.

Then, I realized I might have to wait up to 48 hours for the pectin to set up to see if I had actually won the war.

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Filed under food porn, garden, growdammit, organic, Random, Rufus Dragon

Man Down

sock monkey

Don’t even ask.

 

Confused?  Here are our sock monkey chronicles…

How it All Began

Sock Monkey Madness on Pinterest

My Friends are Sickos

The Spawn Get in On It

Our Sock Monkey Population is Growing

Another Sock Monkey Movie Re-Enactment

And Another

Handicapped Sock Monkeys Need Love Too

 

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GrowDammit Green Tomato Chow-Chow

I realize that we didn’t blog about our garden this year at all, and I am blaming the shitty weather we had up here in Yankeeland this summer.  We had so much rain that nothing thrived.  Our tomatoes did okay, but we had many vines that never even bore fruit or if they did they didn’t ripen before they burst open or rotted on the vine.  Bambi and Thumper didn’t help matters by munching on our okra and sweet peppers.  The birds ate our raspberries.  Every last one of them.  Sometimes, you just can’t win.   We’ll chalk this up to yet another learning experience.

tomatoes from the GrowDammit gardens

Fortunately, we were able to harvest 20 pounds of green tomatoes this past week.

Ted had the past two days off, so I took a couple of vacation days.  He was looking forward to some quality nap time.  I had other ideas.

Chopped veggies for green tomato chow chow.

Yesterday was spent chopping veggies…

mixed veggies for green tomato chow chow

And prepping them for the pickling process.

green tomato chow chow

Today was spent pickling and canning them.

48 jars of GrowDammit green tomato chow chow

48 jars of them.

I’m pretty proud of us.  This is our most ambitious canning endeavor yet, since I realized I was indeed turning into my mother.  She’s the plant whisperer, who coincidentally had a birthday yesterday.  Click here to read about how she totally kicks our gardening asses.

I’m especially proud of Farmer Ted the Chef, who spent his time off cooking and didn’t even complain about it.  Much.

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Filed under Actually About The Garden, food porn, garden, gardening, growdammit, organic