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Preserving your excess garden produce

Annette
Super Contributor

Preserving your excess garden produce

I have been preserving my excess produce for the last 2 years by freezing, dehydrating and bottling (canning) and wonder do any other members preserve their surplus fruit and veg and if so, by which method. Also what type of fruit and veg you preserve and what type of preserving equipment and jars you use as well as labelling methods. It would also be interesting to hear your experiences with preserving - both successes and failures (I've had some of those).

 

Canned Fruit and Vegetables

 

  • For freezing I place my fruit or veg in sandwich sized Ziploc bags.
  • For dehydrating I have a simple Sunbeam dehydrator which has 5 drying trays and 4 roll-up trays.
  • For canning I use Ball Mason jars which are much easier to work with than Fowler jars or Vacola jars.

 

Below is a list of some of the fruit and vegetables that I have preserved as well as some homemade edible gifts.

 

Freezing

  • Peas, beans, corn, carrots, paprika, capsicum, chillies, rhubarb and strawberries etc.

Dehydrating:

  • Celery powder - great for adding to casseroles and stir fry's
  • Tomato powder - great for adding to casseroles or to make tomato paste for pizza bases or spaghetti bolognaise etc.
  • Strawberries and other fruits for healthy snacks
  • Fruit roll-ups
  • Dried figs
  • Dried parsley and other herbs

Canning:

  • Tomato chutney
  • Tomato relish
  • Pickled cucumbers
  • Pickled zucchini
  • Sweet chilli sauce
  • Blackberry syrup
  • Strawberry syrup
  • Plum sauce
  • Watermelon Rind Pickles
  • Passata
  • Apples
  • Apple puree (to later use as fruit roll-ups)
  • Various jams - rhubarb, blackberry, apple
  • Corn Syrup (homemade) to use in various recipes
  • Marshmallow Fluff (homemade)
  • Ice Magic (homemade)
  • Coconut Butter (homemade)
  • Salted caramel sauce (homemade)

 

As well as having this bounty year round for our personal use I also create labels for the "canned" goods and add them to Christmas and Birthday gift hampers for friends and family. To make the hampers extra special I also create nice gift boxes and packaging and surround the hamper with heat shrink wrap topped off with a nice bow to add a professional touch. For the last 2 years I have given these gift hampers in place of store bought gifts which has saved me considerable money and at the same time given something which all my friends and family love and appreciate.

 

Gift Basket

 

IMG_8445.JPG

Andy_Mann
Trusted Contributor

Re: Preserving your excess garden produce

You've done it again, you've knocked my socks off with another inspirational how to, & a refreshingly different perspective for others to think about.

 

I can also attest that giving from the heart, means more than store bought presents.

 

Those beautifully presented baskets look sensational, I can tell they were made with love, & I'm sure the recipients look forward to them.

 

Another standing ovation from me.

 

Annette
Super Contributor

Re: Preserving your excess garden produce

Thanks @Andy_Mann - now you know why I am so busy from the time I get up to the time my head hits the pillow.  

Community Manager Jason
Community Manager

Re: Preserving your excess garden produce

I have my jalapeño plants in the ground now and am hoping for such a bumper crop that I need to preserve some. I will be asking for tips hopefully soon!

Jason
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Annette
Super Contributor

Re: Preserving your excess garden produce

@Jason - I haven't grown or pickled jalapeño but I will check my pickling recipes to see if I have one and pass it along to you.

Good Luck with your bumper crop.

Community Manager Jason
Community Manager

Re: Preserving your excess garden produce

Thanks @Annette, much appreciated.  

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BIM_Engineer
Valued Contributor

Re: Preserving your excess garden produce

@Annette I am hoping you may have a recipe for a shiraz Steak sauce that I can bottle and give away at xmas
Thanks
Annette
Super Contributor

Re: Preserving your excess garden produce

@BIM_Engineer I don't think so but I will put together a list of the sauce recipes I have and see which ones you might like.

AHoy
Experienced Contributor

Re: Preserving your excess garden produce

Do you preserve olives @Annette? There's an olive tree in a park near us that is teeming with olives and they are just going to waste. But I wouldn't know the first thing about what to do with them...

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