The Weekly Digs #189

by Becky

In the Garden

This week we had family in town, my Dad and my nephews were visiting. It was also ridiculously cold (highs of 30’s), so despite my hopes, no garlic got planted. Next week will be up in the 50’s again and I’m not going to waste the opportunity to get them planted.

I’ll have to get them in the ground early in the week before Thanksgiving.

We did get some harvesting done this week though, and harvested all the main broccoli heads except two or three, along with about half the chinese cabbage. 

I haven’t looked at the remaining chinese cabbage since it’s still pretty frigid and I don’t want to remove the cover from the top. I’m hoping the rest is still alive.

Preserving

I did manage to preserve a few things this week since we were inside quite a bit. I made 3 gallons of kimchi from the cabbages we harvested. 

Crock on the right spilled over more than once! I need to remember not to fill it so full next time.

My Jellied Cranberry Sauce Recipe for Canning

I also canned 9 pints of cranberry sauce in preparation for thanksgiving. Over the years I’ve made some slight changes to the Ball canning recipe and made my own version that suits us better!

It’s still safe (only changes are spices, less water, less sugar). I’ll write up a separate printable recipe for it in a couple days but for now, here is the recipe if you’re looking to make some jellied cranberry sauce before Thanksgiving:

  • 16 cups cranberries
  • 4 cups water
  • Zest of one orange
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 5 cups sugar

Place cranberries, water, orange zest, and cinnamon stick in a pot. Boil for 5 minutes and let cool. Meanwhile heat pint jars (4-5) in a water bath canner. 

Remove cinnamon stick. Run the remaining mixture through a food mill. Add sugar and boil hard until it reaches the jelly stage. You need to stir without stopping. This took me about 5 minutes but definitely varies. Place in pint jars leaving a quarter inch headspace. Wipe rims, add lids, and tighten rings to fingertip tight. Process in a water bath canner for 15 minutes, allowing 5 minutes to cool before removing the jars.

A note- This time, I accidently added my sugar before I put everything in the food mill, whoops! I took a picture because it still looked nice and pretty, haha. 

Actually, I was surprised that I had no issues running it through the food mill/ sauce maker and the sauce turned out great! So if you accidently add sugar before removing the skins like me, it will turn out just fine!

Oh and one more thing! I’ve tried to substitute more natural sugars like coconut sugar, maple syrup, and honey in jellied cranberry sauce and it either tastes weird or doesn’t set right. I usually will reach for those when I can, but in this case I don’t recommend it.

Other things of note from the week

  • We got an inch of snow and my kids managed to build snowmen, sled, and have a snowball fight.
  • We fixed our broiler coop (the Joel Salatin style one) to put our Freedom Ranger chickens in. They were growing out of our A frame style coop we made.
  • Cam had a youth group up from church and taught them how to butcher chickens. We had a set of 11 Delaware broilers (heritage) that needed to be dispatched. Some of the young men (they were 16-18yrs) were very into it, while others wanted nothing to do with it. We had a fire pit set up and they had hot cocoa and cookies while they observed from afar, haha!

Limited Time Seed Deal

This post contains affiliate links full disclosure can be found here.

If you order any seeds from High Mowing Organic Seeds, they have 10% off an order of at least $50 until Monday November 21st at midnight (coming up so quick)! The code is N3WFOR2023. It’s a good chance to save a little money and get your seed order in before most of it gets sold out.

I need to check my supply to see what I’m low on and do an order myself! Some of my favorite varieties from them are:

I also order some cover crop seed from High Mowing Organic Seeds like oats. I usually shop around a bit on the cover crops to see who has the best deal- sometimes Johnny’s Seeds or groworganic.com has better prices.

You may notice some seeds from High Mowing are slightly higher in price than other companies because the plants and the seeds saved from them are grown with organic practices and there is more cost involved!

I think organic seed is definitely worth the extra cost when it comes the more disease prone food crops because they have more natural disease resistance. I have noticed a HUGE difference in organic seed from tomatoes and potatoes.

If organic seed is available in a variety I like, I always choose it! High Mowing Organic Seeds, Southern Exposure Seeds Exchange, and Johnny’s Selected Seeds are my go to sources for getting organic seed.

For those celebrating- hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving holiday! 🙂

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1 comment

PamR November 20, 2022 - 2:31 pm

High Mowing also has a CSS usually that has a discount also. That typically ends the week before Christmas.

Lovely broccoli!

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