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Stocking the Freezer

August 17, 2011

Well I “taught” my very first yoga class last night at the local fitness center.  I’m not a pro or even close, but am crazy about yoga and happy to get the opportunity to do it with others right here in town.  It was definitely an odd feeling to be the one directing the practice…but it was all good.  Yoga is always good. 🙂

For you locals…come join us!  I do a power yoga style…so it can be a great workout. 

Look its me.  Not!  Sweet pose though, huh?

This past weekend (after a yoga sesh in my living room)  I was actually somewhat productive with the garden and put up some stuff for the freezer.  This year I am trying to be less wasteful and really utilize the garden to its full potential.  It’s not very easy to keep up with that monster, but so far I’ve done better than last year…so I say that’s an accomplishment!

First up was herbs.  C’mon say it with a non-silent ‘h’…it’s what the cool people do. 

Most years I grow a decent variety of herbs in pots, use them here and there and then let them die out with the weather, sometimes bringing in the thyme and rosemary.  This year I’ve been trying to incorporate fresh herbs in most home-cooked meals and also decided to freeze some for use this winter. 

This was so stinking easy, it kind of had me kicking myself on why I’ve never done this in the past.  All I did was harvest the herbs, wash and dry thoroughly, then chop and shove into a freezer bag.  Piece of cake…took like 5 minutes.

Herbs ready to freeze

I think the Ziploc freezer bags work just fine, of course a vacuum sealer machine would do a good job too.  I’m just not sure if the investment is worth it for my needs.  I do my own vacuum sealing with my lungs and a straw.  Though careful with those herbs, I was sucking the air out of the chives bag and ’bout passed out from the strong ‘onionish’ air flowing up into the straw.  That stuff was strooong. 

I’m hoping the use of the resealable bag works well for just using what I need and then re-vacuum out the air and shove quickly back into the freezer. 

Probably harvest some more herbs again, maybe using the ice cube tray method to have cubes to plop into soups and sauces.  Also got some drying as I write. 

herbs laying out to dry

Then I did a couple three bags worth of edamame.

 frozen bags of edamame

And lastly a couple bags of slow-roasted cherry tomatoes. 

I stumbled across this Slow-Roasted Cherry Tomatoes method at Simple Bites and got excited as it was a super easy way to preserve those cherry tomatoes that are impossible to keep up with right off the vine.  And by slow roasted, I mean slow….6+ hours at a temp of 200 degrees.  Drizzled with olive oil and fresh thyme, these little babies are irresistable when they come out of the oven. 

It was pretty much one for my mouth, one for the freezer bag. 

Slow roasted cherry tomatoes

To freeze they get packed into olive oil and will make a great addition to pizzas, pastas or an easy appetizer down the road. 

So this sums up what I’ve put up so far in the freezer for 2011 in addition to kale, green beans and pesto.   I hope to make some marinara sauce from fresh tomatoes and also have sliced peppers for fajitas to put up as well.  Can’t forget the potatoes and onions in storage too.  Such a good feeling to have some homegrown goods around for future eats. 

Have you put up anything this year?  Do you freeze…maybe can?

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