Monday, September 2, 2013

Just Peachy

Labor Day week end signifies the end of summer. The kids go back to school and the grandmas haul out the canning paraphernalia. Actually most of the schools here call the children back mid August when it is so bloody hot that no one can do any work, so here in Colorado because our older schools are not air conditioned, kids had a history making (certainly news worthy) "too hot to study" day, much like a snow day.

The kitchen certainly has been hot as I have been busy canning.  The canning frenzy began with making salsa from the few garden fresh vegetables that I had:

1 pound of peppers. 

1 pound of sweet onion. I really do not know what counts as a sweet onion. In the super market, the yellow onions are labeled as "sweet." I made two batches, one with yellow onion and one with white.

5 pounds of tomatoes. They are pretty rough looking and I just threw in the best of what I had.

1/4 cup of fresh cilantro, chopped

juice and zest of one lime, t tsp. cumin, 1 tbls. each of dried parsley and salt and 4 minced garlic cloves

The first day I hand chopped everything. Blanched the tomatoes and skinned them. The second batch I chopped everything in the Cuisinart. Went a lot faster! I have to thank Jen's mother-in-law for her recipe. The salsa really is good.

Next came the peaches. I bought two boxes thinking that Jen would help; however, the girls came down with colds, so I was on my own.

Look at the size of these beauties.  After the first batch, I figured out that 15 peaches would do 7 quarts.

I bought my peaches from our farmer friend Russ. His wife and father-in-law drove over to the Western Slope to the orchard to get a truck load. Peaches were pricey this year and few since the orchards froze with a late spring frost.

So all total, I have 10 pints of salsa and 17 quarts of peaches. I will share with the girls. Next year they can do the work.

And we got our hay baled. The Head Gardener fertilized the grass in the spring. The first cutting in June produced had 84 bales and this cutting 111. Now that we have 2 mouths to feed, the extra bales are a great bonus.

And the hay didn't get rained on either, so it is good, sweet grass hay.

The last of gladiolas bloomed, the peach one. It is my favorite, I think.

Mo cat. He's not a very friendly cat. A farrow kitten, he is a loner, especially now that his best and only friend Max the dog died in June. He refused to look in the camera and give me a nice, big smile. But I liked his pose next to the old cultivator. 

The garden is winding down. We are ready to put it to bed. Ready to be done with it. I don't think I will      be doing any more canning or freezing. What about your garden? Are you getting ready to put it to rest for the winter? 

Thank you stopping by. I enjoy reading your comments and I love visiting your blogs. Have a great week.


  1. Your salsa and peaches look great. My garden is winding down too. I have tomatoes & peppers left, but I've pulled the remaining plants. Planning to make salsa this week myself.

  2. We used to have fresh peaches sold by the roadside in France...not here though!
    I'm freezing tomatoes made into sauce, and bags of runner beans at the moment.

  3. Hi Ann, your salsa and canned peaches are beautiful. Well worth the effort in beauty and taste! Here in Florida, it is indeed time to pull up everything in the garden, but time to plant and sow seeds for a new winter garden. Good planting time is between Sept. 15 and Oct. 15, so I am now in the planning stage. I only do a few things mixed in with flowers, so it is easy!
    I spotted your antique green lemon it. I have one, too, and often put it in paintings. Gives me an idea for a new one soon. Thanks!

  4. Mmmmm. I want some peaches!
    I think I'll have some bottled salsa for dinner. It won't be as tasty as yours looks, but it will have to do!

  5. That's the best looking peach it tastes great.

    Poor lonely kitty...sigh.


  6. What a pretty pale color of gladiola! It's beautiful! Of course, I'm loving your salsa. I always made a bunch with all of the peppers and tomatoes at the end of the summer when we had big gardens. We just have a few cherry tomatoes and yellow peppers in pots....but they are GOOD! Enjoy your week!

  7. I wish I lived closer, I would trade you some tomato sauce for some peaches :)))
    We've been trying to find a couple of kittens to keep the mice out of the barn, our neighbor had some cats that had kittens but they could catch them, a bit wild :)

  8. All schools should be air conditioned. You can't learn when you're too hot or too cold. Salsa and peaches look tasty!

  9. Yum your salsa looks good. Mo is such a pretty cat, a nice companion to have outside. Just love all the tomato's ......eating alot of brushetta,and cottage cheese and tomato's!

  10. The salsa sounds great but I don't have enough peppers this year. I have frozen all my extra produce so that I can do something with it over the winter when I can't get outside. I have started cutting back stuff in the garden it's all starting to look a bit 'tatty' so a good tidy up is in order - if I can summon up the energy.

  11. The peaches and salsa look great. I imagine there was a fair bit of work that has gone into the making but will be worth it over the Winter. I've been winding down a little in the garden but not completely. There are still some crops to harvest (kale, herbs, carrots, turnip, salad crops, beans) so I imagine it will be October before I really wind down.

  12. Don't you just love the jars of canned goods sitting out for just a bit to be admired. I always leave mine out for about a week, then I tire of working around them and put them in the pantry. I don't have a garden, we live in the woods with too much shade, but my daughters garden and we have fabulous farm stands everywhere. I concentrate on one or two things each season - and make enough for all of our families for several years. This year was jam - we were down to our last jar and my grandson was scraping the bottom of their last jar. I made peach, raspberry, blazberry (blackberry and raspberry combined), strawberry and peach/raspberry (a new favorite). I canned many quarts of sweet pickle relish made with zucchini and I just got apples at the farm stand for apple butter - going to make it in the crock pot this year. Of course I got enough apples for a fresh apple cake - and later on an apple pie - what is the end of summer without that first apple pie.

    Your peaches and salsa look wonderful - and I love your gladiolas!!!

  13. Hi Ann,

    Good job on the salsa and peaches!! I've always thought freshly canned produce looks so pretty in the glass jars; there's just something comforting about it. This really wasn't a good year for produce, was it? A disappointment for us and a hardship for the farmers, I would think.

    Congratulations on all your hay bales! That will be for the horses, right? I think Mo the cat is cute, but he does look very shy. And your peach-colored gladiolas is absolutely gorgeous. It looks as soft as a water color print.

    Thank you so much for your visit and your sweet comments on our kitchen renovation. I appreciate them so much! I'm glad if I've inspired you to work on your kitchen; it has been a wonderful improvement for us -- feels like a different room. :)

    I hope you have a wonderful weekend, Ann!