Usually I pride myself in knowing every fruit tree around and I didn't know about these! Even our supermarket has a lemon tree in the car pack. It is amazing how few people pick the lemons and walk right past it to buy lemons in the store. In fact the whole car park has a hedge of Rosemary and once I saw a lady buying tiny sprigs of Rosemary in a little plastic packet. I have Rosemary five feet high so I am ok there!
Summer is the hardest month here as we get heatwaves and our power prices are the highest in the world. And we get blackouts as well. And we get bushfires. So mostly I am glad when it is over. But the fruit and summer vegetables are the best thing! The time to get ready is now!
The Plums were from my Aunts lovely garden.
Laine always prayed before shopping. Since I changed my shopping ways and shop many stores I also am in the habit to pray before shopping. To see the best deals, find the things we need and to have things to build up my pantry. Well, I do the same with fruit season and produce.
For years I had buckets of apricots from an elderly neighbour plus plums. Her son put her in a nursing home and pushed down all the trees. Then I had six years of peaches from neighbours over the back and now they pushed down all three peach trees. Things are looking grim. (also what is wrong with people!?)
But there are possibilities everywhere and I am praying that I have lots of fruit come my way. This is my chance to have a years worth of stewed fruit, pies, jam, relish etc for our household and also for the girls. This also gives me gifts. I can make up a hamper of five different jams or a pie with a jar of jam.
Figs from the farm. I can count on these!
The last few years Chloe has picked figs from several trees out on the farm. I suddenly had to become big on fig recipes! And I have found so many! I bake them with chicken, wrap them with prosciutto and fill with cream cheese, make fig paste and jam, top a pizza. Chloe is going to be dehydrating them this year as well.
Whatever it is that comes your way you can turn it into an asset. Figs for instance sold for $2 EACH here last summer yet there are trees on farm that no one picks. How often it is that people have a gold mine in their own backyard and not realise.
Chloe took this picture to show me she had made Lemon Butter plus was using the peels to make vinegar for cleaning!
I keep a basket in the car just incase of finds! This year I am watching in some of the out of town fruit and veggie shops for cases of tomatoes. If I can get any at a great price I will be making relish and sauce. So I am casting my net further afield.
I let everyone know I make jam. I am happy to pick fruit and return with cooking in exchange. I am willing to knock at a door and ask if I see fruit being wasted. I have made several friends this way!
Fruit, preserves etc also give you something to barter with. There is a swap group near us and probably they are everywhere. Your abundance can be exchanged for something else. This is full of possibilities!
Teri just sent me pictures of her summers work! Beautiful.
For now I am busy putting the word out. Saving containers that I could fill with stewed fruit for the freezer. Saving jars. Storing sugar, labels and saving lemons or freezing lemon juice (if you add a little lemon juice to jam you never need to buy pectin)
I watch for jars everywhere! I save them and wash them up, get them from op shops and let everyone know I want jars. I have about a hundred ready right now. Also I am saving bottles for tomato sauce, plum sauce and who knows what else!
This week I will be in country op shops again. So I will be watching for more jars.
More of Teri's current pantry!
A well stocked pantry is one of the best things you can have. This is all a great way to add a lot to your shelves for very little. This is making hay while the sun shines! Aside of supplies you have the ability to go to the pantry to help someone else, find a present, take something with you when going to visit someone.
This is Rachel's citrus jam. Looking gorgeous.
Sometimes I end up with something I am not familiar with. I still say yes! This is my chance to learn about something new and find new recipes. This is when the internet is great. I just google "recipes using....." and you get so much information.
Many times we even overlook things right in front of us. Until Jes taught me I didn't know how to use rosehips. If you go to Strangers and Pilgrims on Earth you can find information on how to use everything from your apple peels and cores to your orange skins. They are all resources!
More preserving by Teri.
My Nan always knew every fruit tree (especially lemon tree) in a fifty mile radius. She loved produce! I inherited it from her I think. Recently Allie my niece told me how she just loves picking fruit. It turned out she knew nothing of her Great Grandmother. So I let her know she comes from a long line of industrious cooks!
This year I would also love to do sun dried tomatoes. I am asking Andy to build me an outdoor drying rack. Might as well use the scorching heat for something good! We have dry heat which is ideal. So I will be learning something new!
So I hope this summer will be busy with produce. I am ready!
Have a good week! It will be busy here. And next weekend I will be putting up the Christmas tree! xxx