Summer Pantry Challenge - Stock up, Use it Up, Preserve It to Save Money - Page 4 - Mothering Forums

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Old 06-15-2009, 02:01 AM
 
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I'm going to have to try this. I assume you stewed the rhubarb till it was mushy first? Or did you just mix it in as it was?
Yup, that's exactly what I did. I set it on the stove while I was mixing the other ingredients, and it was the perfect consistency.

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Old 06-15-2009, 09:35 AM
 
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I have to ask is this the Ball book that is supposed to be so good?
http://www.amazon.com/Ball-Complete-...=34YXICQHWACCX

Another question- suggestions for preserving fruit- besides- freezing(don't want to take up a bunch of freezer space), jelly(don't really use much jelly or jam) or juice(already planning on doing this one). I am getting a bunch of blueberries in a couple of week and trying to decide on how to store them, I will freeze some but I was thinking about canning some- however= I don't want them to be super sugary. I was wondering could I make it like a pie filling, but hardly any sugar? I have heard of Pomona's(actually have some) can be used to do low sugar jam- but could I use it for this? Any ideas for this newbie?

Oh, and on the grow your own front dh's grandma has a ton of asparagus plants she is just looking to get rid of- so we get them! Of course we have to build a bed first, but I am stoked- that was on my list of things to put in- so glad I hadn't bought them yet!

Happily Married to my : 11 yrs- Mama to wild-eyed monkey boy 7-04, fiery little girl 4-07, and the happy smiley baby that sleeps 11-09!
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Old 06-15-2009, 10:26 AM
 
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This is the Ball book that I have and use. http://www.amazon.com/Ball-Blue-Pres...ref=pd_sim_b_8
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Old 06-15-2009, 11:17 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Fruitful4Him View Post
Would anyone have any good sites that has recipes broken down at cost per person, per meal?
I have done that myself many times. I have seen those type of calculations but I think you should tailor make one to fit your family. For example a recipe may say it feeds 6, but if you have an eater with a larger apptite, its more like 4. Or you have 2 younger girls like I do so it really feeds 8.

I can give you an example how to break down each recipe.

Chicken and pasta

4 chicken breasts at $2 a lb so $4
1 lb of pasta in a bag. $1.50
1/8 cup of butter 25 cents
1/2 cup milk 25 cents
1/4 c parm cheese
1/2 cup of broccoli

serves 4 adults

Also factor in cooking time, using your stoves gas and/or electricity, storing the ingredients, the time to shop etc. I gave a guestimate on cost of the food. I buy most things in bulk at the least expensive I can so it trims costs plus needing to use gas and time to go to the store. So where it might be very cheap for me to make this, it might cost someone else a bit more because they have to factor in buying all ingredients when 90% of the time, I have all ingredients on hand.
make sense?

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Old 06-15-2009, 01:17 PM
 
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This is the Ball book that I have and use. http://www.amazon.com/Ball-Blue-Pres...ref=pd_sim_b_8

Love this book!

Frugal, food growing mama to my four loves

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Old 06-15-2009, 03:45 PM
 
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Originally Posted by crunchy_mama View Post
I have to ask is this the Ball book that is supposed to be so good?
http://www.amazon.com/Ball-Complete-...=34YXICQHWACCX

Another question- suggestions for preserving fruit- besides- freezing(don't want to take up a bunch of freezer space), jelly(don't really use much jelly or jam) or juice(already planning on doing this one). I am getting a bunch of blueberries in a couple of week and trying to decide on how to store them, I will freeze some but I was thinking about canning some- however= I don't want them to be super sugary. I was wondering could I make it like a pie filling, but hardly any sugar? I have heard of Pomona's(actually have some) can be used to do low sugar jam- but could I use it for this? Any ideas for this newbie?
You could can pie filling. This can be used for all sorts of desserts and toppings besides pie... buckles, crumbles, ice cream topping, pastry fillings, etc. The thing to remember is that it requires Clear Jel or Therma Jel, a type of starch that will not break down the fruit. I'm pretty sure there is a recipe in the Ball Blue Book and/or Putting Food By (my personal fave).

Good luck!

ETA: I found this on what I consider to be a very good online resource for putting food by:

http://www.pickyourown.org/blueberrypiefilling.htm
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Old 06-15-2009, 09:01 PM
 
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velochic- thanks for the info on the pie filling canning, I guess I just need to get the book and read!

betsy and ruthiegirl- thanks for the book rec!

I canned 11 quarts of chicken soup today! My first using the pressure canner, went to my moms as I wanted a tutorial the first time. Now I am excited about canning all kinds of things!

Happily Married to my : 11 yrs- Mama to wild-eyed monkey boy 7-04, fiery little girl 4-07, and the happy smiley baby that sleeps 11-09!
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Old 06-16-2009, 01:14 AM
 
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:

mama to dd (4-15-06) and
ds (2-23-09)
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Old 06-16-2009, 11:24 AM
 
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Originally Posted by crunchy_mama View Post
velochic- thanks for the info on the pie filling canning, I guess I just need to get the book and read!

betsy and ruthiegirl- thanks for the book rec!

I canned 11 quarts of chicken soup today! My first using the pressure canner, went to my moms as I wanted a tutorial the first time. Now I am excited about canning all kinds of things!
I requested and was given a large pressure cooker/canner and have frequently used the pressure cooker but have only water bath canned in my water bath canner. I haven't come across anything that I need to pressure can yet. Maybe I will be adventurous like you this year! I canned 17 1/2 pints of strawberry jam earlier in the month from strawberries I picked, but I've really only canned blueberry and strawberry jam. I get herds of figs for free from a neighbor with a fig tree who doesn't eat figs??, but hey whatever. I called the extension service and they said I cannot can just straight figs only jam/preserves, so I don't know what to do on that one....I just freeze them.

Liz

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Old 06-19-2009, 06:37 PM
 
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Hello all! I have mostly been lurking here since I didn't have much to add. I've been freezing a few things & taking advantage of a couple good deals I have found to stock up, but that was about it.

Today however I scored an older, but never used food dehydrator on craigslist for $10!!! I am so excited! I'd love to know what suggestions or tips you have for using a food dehydrator. What are your favorite things to dry & how do you use them later? We are vegetarian so we won't be doing beef jerky, however I am going to try tofu jerky. I also just bought a 20 lb box of apples. What else should I try?

Cheryl, wife to an amazing man, homeschooling SAHM to Gavin 12/03, Rhys 09/06, and Ian Aug 11, 2010.

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Old 06-19-2009, 07:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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What are your favorite things to dry & how do you use them later?
Great score! I love tomatoes: Slice cherry or roma tomatoes in half. For the big tomatoes, I would slice about 1/3 inch thick. We eat them like chips! You can rehydrate the tomatoes in olive oil for your own sun dried tomatoes.

We also make fruit leathers - pear, apple, whatever is available for free or cheap.

I found that using these made dehydrating SO MUCH EASIER: http://www.amazon.com/Nesco-American...5446088&sr=8-2 But just make them out of plastic canvas for cheaper!

Bridget. Momma to DD (4), expecting DS - 9/09, wife to SAHD. Gardener, coffee addict, urban dweller.
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Old 06-20-2009, 07:27 AM
 
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Today however I scored an older, but never used food dehydrator on craigslist for $10!!!
Great score! What brand dehydrator did you get? Before trying more complicated things, you might try simple foods with lower moisture content. Some of the cheaper dehydrators cannot dehydrate high moisture foods. The first one I had, I couldn't even properly dehydrate celery and even strawberries took DAYS. My hope for you is that you got an Excalibur. That would be amazing! I don't remember what my old one was, but it was pathetic. Luckily, although it was new, I paid only $5 for it. Happy drying!!


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I found that using these made dehydrating SO MUCH EASIER: http://www.amazon.com/Nesco-American...5446088&sr=8-2 But just make them out of plastic canvas for cheaper!
Is the plastic canvas food-grade plastic? Where do you find it?
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Old 06-21-2009, 02:59 PM
 
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Today we are going over to the ILs for lunch so I volunteered to bring a pasta salad. I boiled some pasta and shopped my pantry and fridge for things to chop up and them with some oils, vinagars and some spices, made up a great dressing. Is tastes pretty good.

Sadly, when I make up stuff like this, I can usually not make it again LOL because its whatever I have on hand! : I do this w soups, salads, pizzas and sometimes casseroles or a "crockpot concoction" as DH calls it.

"The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly out distances us."
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Old 06-21-2009, 03:02 PM
 
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o0ops, forgot to add:

Yesterday we picked from our long long strawberry patch next to our driveway (our driveway is extremely long mind you) and we had a very large bowl. That was filled even though the kids still munched away as they picked.

So that should be yummy on my granola and yogurt breakfasts this week.

"The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly out distances us."
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Old 06-22-2009, 09:29 AM
 
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Well, we are definitely moving now so we are eating out our pantry and freezer just to not have to move it all. We have been doing well so far so we'll get inventive and hope it continues.

Weird side story: I had saved a good deal of money grocery shopping and had to pick up the odds and ends to flesh out the meals. Only $65 for the week and a half. Sadly, someone stole my groceries from my cart. I went to Save A Lot where you bag your own, and they nabbed a bag right in broad daylight in the bagging area of the store. Cost me another $27 to replace it. I am glad I already carry my money in my pocket. Things are insane.

Jennifer
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Old 06-22-2009, 11:39 AM
 
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Wow on the grocery nabbing.

This week, I was able to get 4 pints of green beans canned, plus another pint of dilly beans. And, a local store had 12 oz bags of broccoli and cauliflower 3/$1, so I froze 2 gallon bags of broccoli, and I made 2 quarts of cauliflower pickles. This is yet another pickle recipe. We used to love a storebought cauliflower pickle, but they stopped making it a few years ago. Since then, I've been on the quest for a good recipe. We'll see if this one passes muster.
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Old 06-22-2009, 07:00 PM
 
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Magpie- I am sorry that had to happen to you! Its sad that groceries are being swiped like that.

So DH has requested Texas chili. Its made with chuck cut up (like stew meat) so I fished out 4 lbs from the freezer and found an awesome recipe in saveur. That is for this week. Also there is an awesome beef brisket bbq recipe.

I am stocked for the warmer season. We have a ton of pasta, veggies etc since we eat a lot more of those type of dishes.

"The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly out distances us."
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Old 06-22-2009, 09:15 PM
 
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How did I miss this thread?

Joining for sure!!

My dd picked so many wild plums last week. They weren't all ripe, so I put the unripe ones in a cardboard box to ripen. I gave a big box to my neighbor, and yesterday canned 8 quarts of wild plum jam. Today I canned 8 quarts plus 8.5 pints of red plum/apricot jam.

I put up 7 quarts of zucchini pickles, and 6 quarts of dilly beans (both green black beans and green beans).

Tomorrow is potatoes. My plants are dying off and I'm pulling potatoes like mad. I'll also dehydrate a bunch of those in my Excalibur.

We harvested almost 900 onions (yellow and red), and my oldest dd braided and hung all of them. We thought. Til we were out in the garden tilling up the onion patch and found 2 whole rows she missed, lol! The tops were not there (don't have a clue what happened there!), so I dug 'em up and brought them in. Will be chopping so.many.onions to make minced onion in the dehydrator.

I have 2 rows of nice kale to bring in, and I think the plants will bolt. I'll probably make kale chips outta those.

We are going to my moms house this coming weekend to butcher one last sow (we did about 30 in the last 4 months, and split the meat 5 ways), and 4 goats. Well, we may bring one goat home live and butcher it on the 4th and cook it for our July 4 bash. We are bringing home 3/4 of the pig because no one else has any room! We also have 9 more domestic rabbits to butcher, and I think I'll can those.

I like this thread!

Magpie, so sorry you had your groceries nabbed. Good grief.

Happy Homesteading Homeschooling Homebirthing Beekeeping Dready (& a bit redneck even) Mama to 4 fab kids :  dd (23), dd (13), ds (11), dd (5)

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Old 06-26-2009, 01:04 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, I'm going in the wrong direction, again! I bought a bunch of meat and sausage today at such good prices. And I broke down and got ice cream.

Staying a little on track, I made some Tofu with Sweet Chili Sauce and boiled up some eggs for lunches and breakfasts. I found a bag of yellow peppers in the freezer, and will look for something to do with those. And I think I will be making some banana bread this weekend.

DH is out of the house for the weekend, so maybe I can plan some meals with our stash.

Bridget. Momma to DD (4), expecting DS - 9/09, wife to SAHD. Gardener, coffee addict, urban dweller.
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Old 06-26-2009, 11:53 AM
 
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The midwest had a monsoon season it seems, but now we have heat. So I already have tomatoes coming up! That is the earliest I remember getting them. Usually it takes until the second week in August to get them. But the way things are going, I might be picking veggies in about 3weeks. So canning might come sooner than later.

"The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly out distances us."
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Old 06-27-2009, 12:08 AM - Thread Starter
 
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A better day today.

I had some cilantro left over from the tofu I made. MIL was babysitting DD, and mentioned that she had some tofu and wanted to make the same dish, but she needed to get some cilantro. Voila! I cleared out my cilantro, and she got some.

Tonight, I am drying some herbs from the garden. We have a cheap source for dried herbs, but I let what' in the garden go to waste. So tonight, I am working on chives, oregano, mint and thyme.

Bridget. Momma to DD (4), expecting DS - 9/09, wife to SAHD. Gardener, coffee addict, urban dweller.
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Old 06-27-2009, 01:51 PM
 
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The midwest had a monsoon season it seems, but now we have heat. So I already have tomatoes coming up! That is the earliest I remember getting them. Usually it takes until the second week in August to get them. But the way things are going, I might be picking veggies in about 3weeks. So canning might come sooner than later.
I'm 200 miles south of you and have had the same issue. My problem is that my garden doesn't drain well. My tomato plants are still knee-high. I'm going to have to do something or I'll have no garden harvest this year, which will really be a sticky wicket for us (not because of finances, but because we like home-grown food).
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