Farmgirl School

"It is no bad thing to celebrate a simple life." -Tolkien


524.  Final count of canned items.  The last was this week’s potatoes.  Twenty jars of ready to cook potatoes joined the ranks of winter and spring food.  The canners are going into hibernation now.  Hurray!  As much as I enjoy the salsa dancing sound of the pressure cooker, I am ready to just settle down and eat my way through the root cellar.

I planned out early how much I needed to can of each thing.  Rough estimates for sure.  Let’s see, green beans once a week until May….Tomatoes and sauce twice a week….Had too much of this last year left over….not enough of that.  A hopeful sketch emerged and the root cellar checklist I made will  head downstairs on a clipboard.  I’ll be even more efficient next year.

The potatoes are in their wire crates.  The butternut squash is too.  The onions in a box.  The corn is drying.  The carrots are in a five gallon bucket emerged in slightly damp sand.  There is a large bag of sugar, a fifty pound of flour on order, buckets of whole grains to grind.  There is the surrounding air of deep satisfaction and peace.

10 thoughts on “Hibernation for the Pressure Canner (and the farmer!)

  1. Cheryl says:

    Could you go into more detail on how you store potatoes? You have some canned and then some in wire crates. Do you use the one in wire crates first? How long do those usually last?

    1. Farmgirl says:

      I use the ones in the wire crates first. If they are in good condition, well dried, they will last a few months. I pick out regularly any that are starting to shrivel as they will prompt the others to follow suit. Remember, I don’t have a true root cellar; I have a creepy basement in a 100 year old house. It stays ten degrees colder down there than upstairs. Ideally, they would prefer ten degrees cooler than that. But, I work with what I have! This is my first time with the canned potatoes and am excited about digging into them for impromptu meals come February!

  2. Barb says:

    I have a pressure canner and have been afraid to use it! My mom even took it to get calibrated at the extension office. Regular canning I love, but the pressure canner is intimidating. I think I just need to use the darned thing. 🙂

    1. Farmgirl says:

      Get it out, Barb, it is easy once you get past the first initial scare!

  3. bhoyt10 says:

    Wow, you have been busy!

  4. Mark Pearce says:

    It all sounds so warm and cozy. 🙂

  5. Bill says:

    Awesome. What a great and satisfying feeling it is to grow and preserve your own food. Canning that much is a lot of work. Very impressive.

    I’ve never heard of canned potatoes. Are they already cooked, so all you have to do is warm them up?

    1. Farmgirl says:

      Uncooked…Pressure canned so that when the stores downstairs run out, I can made some quick mashed potatoes or fried potatoes!

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