Recently I have started to see little bud that will soon develop in to big juicy tomatoes in just a matter of time. In order to try and stay ahead in the garden this year I have begun to think about what to do with the harvest. Having something to do with my harvest has always been a problem that has snuck up on me in overwhelming amounts in the past.
While I do my best to eat all I can, often I just cant seem to do it before it all starts going bad.
I’m am not too far ahead in thinking this year since harvesting has well begun even though we are still trying to get a few things into the ground due to all this rain. Harvested so far have been strawberries, kale, mustard greens, radishes, mulberries, and kohl rabbi. Even though harvest hasnâ€™t been much yet it has been enough to bring back horrible flash back of wasting produce from my garden.
In The Garden there is probably close to one hundred and fifty tomato plants planted, and little green tomatoes are just starting to appear. In order to prepare for their harvest I need to do some preparation and research. Since it is hard to know exactly how many tomatoes will be left after donating to the local food pantry, the homeless ministry, neighbors of the garden and the congregation of the church guess work will be involved.
It always seems pretty easy for my family to find ways to eat fresh tomatoes directly form the backyard, on sandwiches, in stir fry, and the family favorite bruschetta with all garden fresh produce. After we have had our fill of fresh tomatoes there always seems to be even more! In the past my family has diced some of it up and froze it. We have used this like canned diced tomatoes in recipes but that has been the extent of our preserving tomatoes.
This year due to the fact that The Garden and my parents back yard both have more than the usual number of plants we will need to bring out the canning supplies in order to not have any waste of the produce.
It is time to learn a new skill in canning! With whatever surplus tomatoes I will have after the first fruits I plan to preserve so I can eat them throughout the year. I am hoping to can diced tomatoes, tomato sauce and whole or halved tomatoes.