Sunday, September 27, 2009
Friday, September 25, 2009
So I the ribbon I got after the season last year, went a stole some corn stalks from the field and set my pumpkins and the gourds I got from a friend out and when it was all said and done this is what I have.....
Even though fall is not my favorite season I absolutely love all the decorations for this time of the year. I think it is because it is based around farming. This is the time of the year that all farmers can't wait for. The time when they get to collect the fruits of their labor.
So this year I was finally somewhere that I could plant my first solo garden. I really haven't done much in a garden since the summer right after my freshman year of college when I moved back to mom and dad's and helped with my mom's garden there.....so it's only been seven years. So after we finally got moved into our house and I finally got the ground tilled up where I was gonna put my garden, I could start planting my veggies. When I got to planting my tomatoes I did what I have always done....plant two full rows through the garden. That's what your suppose to do right??? I mean that's what we always did going up. The main difference between now and then is....back then there were six people in that house and five of them loved eating tomatoes....and now there are two people living in this house and only one of them loves eating tomatoes and it's not me. So you are probably asking yourself....if she doesn't like tomatoes then why is she growing so many?? If you think like my dad then, first I'm sorry ;) and second you would tell me I'm un-American since I don't like eating a fresh garden tomato with salt on it. The thing is I will try a bite of a tomato every year and every year I think they are gross. Now if you were to take that same tomato, cook it and and some other ingredients into it I would love to eat it.....it's just those fresh raw tomatoes that I can't stand to eat.....yet I still plant enough to feed a small country. O-well I love to grow the nasty things and then make all kinds of good things out of them.....especially yummy salsa!!!
Here is some of the first tomatoes that I picked. That is a box that I got about 26 lbs of peaches in and it worked great for tomatoes.....I guessed that I would have 20-25 lbs each time I would fill it and I have filled it at least five maybe six time so you do the math.....that's a few tomatoes!!!
The first ones I got to picked were soo pretty.....the ones got a lot of rain on them and they started to crack more.....but when you are making tomato juice and salsa does it really matter what they look like...not really!!
So with most of my tomatoes I have been making salsa....cause I really like salsa. I have been trying to find the best recipe for it and well I think I know what all to put in to it.....it's the different amounts of each where I have the problems cause I really don't measure but I will try to give you the recipe as best as I can!
You start off will a lot of tomatoes.....and this is for a big batch of salsa.....enough to do a canner full of 9 pint jars.....I used about half of my peach box....so 10-13lbs of tomatoes. I really just started cutting the cores out of them and when I thought I had enough I stopped. You need to remove skin from all the tomatoes....and the easiest way to do that is by blanching them....and for those who don't know what that is well.....it is when you take the tomato and place it into boiling hot water for about 30sec or until the skin starts cracking....and then you take it out with a slotted spoon and place it into ice cold water. After that the skin will pretty much just fall off. This process can also be used with peaches.....which is great when you are wanting to do a batch for frozen sliced peaches.....yum yum.....the best with a little sugar on top.....if you were are mine and Caleb's wedding last year then you would know what I was talking about!!! Anyways back to the salsa.....you need to take the core out of the tomatoes and take the skin off.....it doesn't matter which order but it's a lot easier before they are skinned cause they are not as slimy!!
After you have the skin off you need to get all the seeds out....the only reason for this so your salsa isn't super runny and juicy. If you leave the seeds in it will be more like tomato juice than chunky salsa. this would have to be the worst part of it...it takes forever....so put the radio on a good station or put a good CD in and get to work!! The way that I get the seeds out is by cutting the tomatoes in to quarters and then use a spoon and dig out the seeds.
Then after you get all the seeds out you chop the tomatoes into chunks.....it's at this point that you realize there is not near as much as you thought there would be.
Next I always go to chopping up the onions.....for a batch this big I always use 2 medium red onions. You want to finely chop them.
If you have ever done much with red onions then you know they will make your eyes burn an water like crazy when you start to cut them up.....something that mom and I have figured out is that if you wear contacts while chipping them up they really don't bother you.....but for those that don't wear contacts all I can think of is getting a pair of swimming goggles or some other type of goggles to wear cause it is terrible other wise.....or if you have a food processor...which I don't that would work great for chopping up all these veggies.... and things would go a lot faster too!!
Now all that's left to do is get you a bag of good tortilla chips and something good to drink and have you a snack!!
if ya got any question on it just ask me!!!
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
I think this was either a tiger or lion fish.....kinda ugly and kinda cool lookin'
This was an albino red-eared slider...they are what you usually see out in your ponds and are closely related to a paint turtle...they are also usually mistaken for them too! In one of our ponds we have about 30 of these guys.
After going through the aquarium we went outside and visited while Kelly looked for some place where we could get some ice cream. We finally found a Brahms near buy and got some good ice cream....yummy!!! It wasn't the most beautiful day out side but we had a blast hangin' out with some great friends and hopefully we don't have to wait another year before get to see them again!!
Monday, September 21, 2009
The corn in this field was doing really good....here's Pop going by with a hopper full
The semi is headin' back as the combine is dumping into the grain cart. We had just started in this field. So we still had a ways to go
We were really excited about our new grain cart....it is big and awesome!!!
Here's the crew minus one...well actually minus two...Pop is finishing up the last little bit out in the field and I am taking the picture. That's my truck that's behind the guys. I love driving it, cause it's a piece of cake!! The only thing I don't like about it is that it has a small door in the back and it takes forever to unload!
The semi unloads a lot faster.....it takes about the same amount of time to unload 900+ bushels from the semi as it does to unload 600 bushels from my truck.
We have harvested some corn, but it's just scratching the surface of what we need to do....now we have to wait for all the rain from today to dry back up so we can get back at it! and as soon as we get rolling we won't stop!!
Friday, September 18, 2009
Thursday, September 3, 2009
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
My yummy quiche and fruit.....those things that look like blueberries are actually grapes, they were sooo good!!!
The birthday girls' food....there was a bratwurst and a knaughtwurst on sour kraut along with warm potato salad and some red cabbage that was sweet and really good.
After we were done eating we went on a tour of the wine cellars and found out some more interesting things about Stone Hill. Before prohibition Stone Hill was the 2nd largest winery in the United States and the 3rd largest in the world. They were also producing 1.2 million gallons of wine a year.This was in the Apostle cellar....that archway behind Caleb use to be filled all the way to the top with a wooden barrel before prohibition. The barrel's had life size carvings of the twelve Apostles on them. It took twelve years to do all the carvings....so about one year for each one. When prohibition happened the government came out an tore Stone Hill's 700 acres of grapes vines out of the ground, busted all the barrels and dumped all the wine into the Missouri River. It's crazy to think what it could have been today if prohibition hadn't happened.
They said that the Apostles barrel fronts were taken off in secret but when they tried to ship them to somewhere in France they got intercepted by the government and destroyed....that's so sad.
This is the only 5,000 gal barrel that made it through prohibition....that was because it was sent to a Monastery for sacramental wine.
The beautiful birthday girl and her husband.
Me and Caleb....the bast thing about this photo is that Brandon was taking this and he was crouching down and sticking his but strait our.....it was a pretty funny sight.
So to top off the afternoon, when we got back to Kim and Brandon's house we find a herd of ropin' steers in the yard. The next door neighbor had forgot to shut a gate, so we got to have a little fun and chase these funny looking guys all around the yard. (A little fact about roping steers....they aren't all steers...they are actually full grown cattle...they are called Mexican Roping cattle)
After this Caleb and Brandon left to go to a tractor pull and us girls went out to eat some yummy Shakespeare's Pizza and then did some shopping. It was a long day, but boy did we have fun!!!