Friday, July 3, 2009

Pain and Wonder

Last night I canned some fantastic salsa from a recipe on GardenWeb. My neighbor laughed at me. She could funnel salsa all day long whereas I don't usually touch it, but I've come to realize I don't like my salsa cold. I like it heated through and this salsa when heated to cook was good. Fantastic at that, but whereas I had some of the ingredients from the garden, I had to supplement. I canned it, it worked amazingly well and now it's sitting its purdy self on my shelf. Hopefully when I open a can in a month or two it won't kill us all, for this could end up being "The Coroner's Yard," yet.

Note to self...your hands may have stopped burning quite some time ago from the capsicum in the peppers you cut for the salsa, but that means nothing to your eyeballs when you go to take out your contacts or even put them in the next morning. And yes, the hottest pepper I cut was a little jalapeno. Yes, I'm a wuss; yes, I've been told it before. I still say peppers smell badly, but I've got respect for them now.

Today, I just HAD to find something to do with that gargantuan zucchini. We've got tons sliced and shredded in the freezer, we're not relish eaters, and I know that it's not safe to can zucchini without a pressure canner, which I'm not interested in. But, what I could do is make some zucchini salsa and freeze it! Yay, more salsa!!

You'd think I'd remember to wear gloves, this being less than 5 hours removed from the morning contact experience.

Yeah, me too. But anyway, I made the salsa, got rid of the Goliath zucchini and two of his friends, but the recipe called for nutmeg. I'm not a big nutmeg fan, but I put a bit in. It's not as good as the one I made last night, but it's something new, the zucchini is used, and it's in the freezer.

Harvests are getting smaller. Here's today's. The bush cucumbers over in the large bed are going to get pulled out tomorrow. They've produced one cucumber to the same seeds in the side bed's 20 lbs. They're dying back, have no new blooms and just not worth the water. I still have a few on the vining cucumbers to last the month.

I put the tomatoes on the counter to use for tomorrow's picnic, but I took the red chilies and strung them together to dry.

I hung them in my cabinet in the dark to try to maintain their color, but I've got no idea what to do with them. Seriously, I'll never use them in anything and my new found respect for a measly jalapeno is not helping me look at these things favorably.

But on from the pain to the wonder....

There's just something cute about a baby cantaloupe. There's not much more in the garden which could possibly be cuter.

Except a baby watermelon. Smile for the camera, baby watermelon!

Now grow, darn you, grow!
The morning comes early, but I'm still stalling since I'm afraid to take my contacts out. Sweet gardening dreams.


  1. I love pictures of wee baby veggies!

  2. I bought a box of surgical gloves. Works great for cutting up hot peppers, emptying RV sewage tanks and all that there good stuff. Use them once and toss them out.

    Not that I'd ever empty an RV sewage tank....just sayin'.

  3. Those red chilies look so pretty!

    And that cute baby watermelon... awwww... my watermelon vines are still just little... waiting for hot summer days.

    Would love your salsa recipe!

  4. Ah grasshopper, you have learned the lesson of the jalapeno well.
    Hope you got your contacts out okay.Go buy a box of cheapo rubber gloves for jobs like salsa.

    Happy Fourth!

  5. I do, too, KitsapFG. There's a promise of things to come. If they'd only just hurry up! :)

  6. Granny, We had some gloves once. I think we used them all up. I tried using close fitting gardening gloves today, but the ruber finger tips made it too grippy

  7. You know, Toni, it took my watermelon a LONG time to start growing. Now that it has, it's doing great.

    Go to gardenweb and search Annie's Salsa. It's fantastic.

  8. Sue, I suppose I'm more like my girl than I realize (or maybe she's more like me). Try anything twice. If it hurts, do it a third time. :)

  9. Hi Ribbit! Found Annie's salsa recipe! Thanks, can't wait to try it!

    Do you use water bath or pressure canning? I see that in subsequent posts, the amount of vinegar was increased to 1 Cup for HWB.

  10. I used the cup full AND I used cider vinegar. Fantastic! I used a straight water bath.

    As a matter of fact, since I can't use my new canner because of my glass top, I just took a tall pot, lined the bottom with jar lids that I wasn't using, wire tied those together so they wouldn't float and presto! Instant water bath.

  11. Awesome! Thanks Ribbit!

    Off to water the garden! Have a great day!

  12. Dad said to Mom: "That kid turned out to be a darn good cook"!. Excellent zucchini salsa!

  13. You are weeks ahead of us here in London. I am nowhere near being able to make salsa. I am growing some tomatillos here, look forward to salsa in about a month or so.

  14. Glad you liked it, Mom. Did you make it hotter since it was so mild?

  15. Matron, that may be, but we need to combine efforts because I may have tomatoes, but my lettuce is shot for the year. It's a conspiracy, I tell you.

  16. No need to. It was delicious as it was. Love the red peppers. They make for lovely colorful decoration.

  17. Oh dear! Been there, done that, bought cheapo surgical gloves for the next round.

    Seriously, the first time I made salsa, I didn't think it would be that bad, but my hands kept burning, then when I removed my contacts my eyes burned. Also, when I was washing out the seeds in the sink, I started coughing. I couldn't breath!

    I hope your hands and eyes stop burning.

  18. I might mention, if you ever put hot peppers in a blender or food processor, do not...I repeat, DO NOT put your face over the container and breathe the fumes.

  19. No need, Granny. I already did that while the pickling mixture was boiling, twice. It's right up there with not wearing gloves.

  20. Oh, fume breathing. So much fun.

    I have some harvested jalapenos, and I'm actually kind of afraid to use them. I need to make some shrimp and coconut soup; use up that cilantro too.

  21. mmmmm. Now that's good eating!