I love this time of year!
There is so much to enjoy outside! - and by enjoy, i most definitely mean eat!
I wanted to just share some of what I have "enjoyed" lately...
My in-laws recently took a road trip to Washington state and were so gracious to bring us back some fresh cherries and apricots! We had a gallon of cherries to consume! Besides eating them straight out of the fridge our favorite has become sauteed cherries over ice cream! You must try!
- Cut cherries in half and remove the seed/pit and stem (the juice is bright red and will stain your clothes!)
- Melt a tbsp of butter in small skillet
- Put cherries in skillet and sprinkle with a little bit of sugar.
- Cook cherries until the get soft and they start to put off a syrup.
- Poor hot cherries over ice cream and ENJOY!!!
The handful of apricots weren't quite enough to make preserves, especially if I intended to take advantage of a fresh juicy apricot! I had never done it before but decided to dry the remaining apricots before they got too over ripe!
- Cut apricots in half along the "seam" or indention. (this makes removing the pit easy)
- Remove the pits
- Turn the apricot halves inside-out (this is difficult if the apricots are soft, as mine were)
- Arrange cots dome up, or inside up, on drying rack
- Follow dehydrator instructions for temp and time
(I did 135 deg for about 10+ hours)
- Store dried cots in cool dry place and you just added a couple weeks to their shelf-life!
Perhaps my FAVORITE thing about this time of the year is fresh Blackberries!!! July 4th weekend was spent in the wild bushes hoping to get enough for a cobbler and some jam! (and yes, I pick one eat 3!) With the help of good friends and a husband who likes blackberry cobbler almost as much as I do, we came home with a gallon! - Not only did I get a bag full of berries, but I also collected a few chiggers and a poison ivy rash that turned out to be the worst I have ever had. But I still consider it a wonderful time and worth it!
However, my kitchen wasn't as prepared to make cobbler as I was. Out of Sugar! So I have picked up a 10# bag of sugar, but I haven't had time to make a cobbler or Jam yet!
Despite not making apricot preserves or blackberry jam, my canner has already been dusted off this year! In a nearby town there is a produce stand that says "elbow drippin peaches." This is the first year I have been able to catch someone there when I go by. (my mom has bragged on these peaches for the last two years) I wasn't optimistic about my upcoming available free time, so I only got a small basket, but I did get to enjoy an 'elbow drippin snack' and canned 3 quarts of peaches for some future cobblers!
I love getting to take advantage of all creation that God has given us! Whether that be soaking up the sun, smelling the rain, or enjoying a plump juicy blackberry!
The earth has yielded it's produce; God, our God, blesses us. Psalm 67:6
What are some of your favorite summer harvests!?