All about canning, freezing, and a certain gardener-crabber

Aug25th 20101 comment

Does your dining room look like this? Yeah, mine, either. But for my friend Cheryl in the Northern Neck of Virginia, this is just the beginning of the putting up she and her hubby are up to their elbows in this time of year. Pretty impressive to me, having never canned or preserved any foodstuff in my whole life. (Okay, and barely having grown any food until recently.)

And check out their stash of Brunswick stew, as of almost a month ago.  I remember this delectable, old-fashioned dish famously served in the taverns of Colonial Williamsburg. My family adored it and we'd go out of our way to stop off and get some on the way home from the beach. I tried some of Cheryl's (actually made by her manly, football-coaching husband) and it was deelish!

Above you see just part of the garden where all this food comes from (minus the chicken in that stew, which they acquire in the usual, modern way). 

I remembered Cheryl's impressive canning operation the other day when I received some recommendend national websites on the subject from the University of Maryland. They're all listed below and to beautify their excellent list, how about a photo of Cheryl doing her daily checking of the crab pots? This is one of the four that she's allowed to have along this creek, which leads to the Potomac River just about where it meets the Chesapeake Bay. Pretty glam-looking crabber, I'd say.



General Storing of Food in pantry/refrig/freezer

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Those filled pantry shelves are beautiful. I have done canning in the past, but now I mostly freeze things. This summer I did make raspberry jam with a 12 year old grandson and he won first prize at our town fair. His brother made bread and butter pickles. Twice! The seals on the first batch didn't take. It's a good thing they don't taste for the judging. The first unsealed pickles tasted much better than the second batch. And I did not help. Only advised from afar - as per fair regs.

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