Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Lazy, Hazy, Crazy

You GUYS!

I've been averaging one post a WEEK around these parts lately. What is up with that?! I'd blame the usual summer craziness for that little trend, but honestly, in years past I've managed way more posts during this time of year so I'm really not sure why gives. I think in this particular instance, laziness, not craziness, is the true culprit. Like most things in life, it all boils down to priorities.

It's not that I've meant to neglect this little blog. Every day I think of things to post about, but somehow, right about the time that I think I'll sit down and actually write that post, something else calls my name and suddenly it's bedtime and another day has come and gone sans post. C'est la vie.

Our weather has finally cooled off a bit (not that it was anywhere as hot as elsewhere in the country, but 90+ degrees is HOT for almost Canada northern Minnesota) and we're enjoying temperatures in the 70s and low 80s. It's nice to feel human again  and also have the energy to actually do something in the evening. Andy and I have been trying to get out and fish before sunset: the fishing's great . . . the catching, not so much.

Also, remember earlier in the summer when I was all "meh, blueberries?" Yeah, scratch that.

Have now picked five gallons of berries and am planning to head out to pick my sixth (and final . . . I swear) gallon this afternoon yet. That is, if I can get my arse off this chair.

So what does one do with six gallons of blueberries? Two gallons stay in the freezer to be used in muffins, pancakes, fruit salads, et al. throughout the year. Another gallon is given away. Then I've made two different batches of blueberry infused vinegar (including Paula's recipe and another one which uses basil and lemon zest from the Ball Canning cookbook) and a big batch of blueberry butter.
Butter is a term for fruit that's been cooked down slowly to a spreadable consistency over low heat. The spread uses half as much sugar as blueberry jam, resulting in a soft spread that purplier and more berryful (yes, neither of those are "real" world . . . just doing my part to keep the English language alive) than jam. I used Marisa McClellan's slow cooker recipe from Food in Jars, which is seasoned with cinnamon, nutmeg, and lemon zest. Basically, it's like eating blueberry pie on toast.

The garden's starting to churn out produce lately and it's happy coincidence that berry season is drawing to a close just as the garden kicks it into high gear. (Because really, I can only do so much.) Just look at the haul we made last night: 
I foresee many a stir-fry
Have you ever seen such beautiful kohlrabi, broccoli, and kale? Oh, and there are green beans in the bottom of the purple container too. I went grocery shopping yesterday and I just love when we hit that time in the season when I can walk down the produce aisle going:  "Oh, we've already got some. Tell 'em we've already got some!" (Name that movie.)

I wasn't sure how I felt about kale, but luckily - considering the quantity it's producing - both Andy and I have found it pretty darn delicious and it's the first ingredient I've found that really pairs well with the venison chorizo we made last November.

So that's life around these parts: living locally and deliciously.

How are you spending the lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer?

2 comments:

  1. I'd give anything for an 90* day! its 104* here in Texas right now! I've got more tomatoes than I know what to do with, but its so hot, not much else is putting on!
    I'm having a giveaway today, I hope you'll stop by!
    http://13plumconfessions.blogspot.com/2012/07/SGAgiveaway.html

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  2. That blueberry butter sounds like a good plan, I have been a little crazy with jamming here this summer - so much sugar! So far I've made 7 different kinds, and I'm always thinking of another flavour. I think perhaps some people will be getting gift baskets for Christmas! I've recently moved on to pickles, and soon it will be salsa, and baby food for Wendel! I love this time of year, but I'm always so happy once it starts to quiet down into fall :)

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