About 25 years ago I started drying some of my own veggies which back then wasn’t very many! I started with Celery and green peppers ; now through the years and more time after having had raised 4 boys things have changed.
Living in a little River town the past 23 years I began doing a garden again and canning and freezing along with drying veggies and herbs!
So here are a few items I make with some of my dried vegetables and herbs.
I dried my own Celery last fall and keep in canning jars. It’s so nice to have for soups, stew and such!
The jar on left is the Celery, sorry forgot I ran out of Labels!
The bottom bag is my mix of green peppers, red peppers and jalapeños! So good mixed with Meatloaf,Tacos,Chili and such.
Cilantro my Favorite herb to cook with or mix in my Italian dishes, I’ll be raising more this year !
Then last but Best is my Taco Seasoning and Chili seasoning mixes!
Taco Seasoning Mix
1/4 cup chili powder
1/4 cup cumin powder +2 Tablespoons
1-1/2. Tablespoon garlic powder
2tsp onion powder
2 tsp oregano
2 Tablespoons salt
1-1/2 tsp pepper
Put all ingredients in a pint jar and shake to mix well, This makes approximately 1 cup.
I add 3-4 Tablespoons to 2 lbs of hamburger
1/2 c chili powder +2 Tablespoons
2 -1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp onion powder
5 tsp paprika
1/4 c plus 2 Tablespoons cumin
1-1/2 Tablespoons salt
3 Tablespoons pepper
Add 3 Tablespoons and 1/2 cup water to 1 pound of meat
As a stay at home mother of 4 , I was always finding ways to stretch the dollar and and feed our family of six which was very hard at times with just one of us working so I tried to find ways to compensate.
We had a large yard in a small town so with my childhood experiences gardening with dad and canning with Grandma I decided I could do it also and raise some food for our family!
We have always been big on food storage thanks to our church up bringing and My love for gardening and canning. So this is where it all started and will keep going as long as I can !!
I began Gardening in my younger years when our family was young and keep learning and experiencing each year! Live and Learn right?
I’m no professional my no means , but I had a lot of fun and sore hands in the process!
Well to start off lets pick and good location for your garden with at least 6 hours of sunlight, good dirt, and free of weeds( a never ending battle) as can be! We tilled it several times in spring and I hoed for hours seemed like!
I always marked my sections off with string and left plenty of space between rows so I could get in there without damaging any plants or the kids stepping on them. Aww them “Good Ol Days”
Grow the foods that you know you will eat, No sense in all the work if you’re not going to eat it Right?
Determine the planting dates an directions for your Geographical Area which is usually located on the packages; but if not you can always go to your local government, university or good ol Google!
The soil should drain well and have access to water and hoses. Some fertilizers can be added during tilling and some during the growing season. I prefer natural fertilizers as to the chemical ones, It’s usually cheaper and safe for pets and children.
Mulching retains moisture and eliminates weeds. Straw,hay, and grass clippings are all effective.
Remember each year to rotate your crops as some plants are hard on soil, plus it controls disease and insect infestation.
in the Fall its times to start preserving all the food you have nurtured throughout the season! And there are a few ways to do that.
Drying, can be done at home for little cost; you can dry in the oven, in the sun, or in home Dehydrators, Freezing and My Favorite Canning!
It all boils down to having the satisfaction of raising your own foods and knowing whats in them! As we all know now days we have no idea what is in our food; but that’s another subject!
So this is a few basics to get you going this coming planting season and happy Gardening!!
I’m always learning too, so I may be adding more info as I can.
I BOUGHT A NEW TOY TO HELP WITH MY GARDENING THIS LAST YEAR AS WE LIVE IN A SMALL HOME AND RUNNING OUT OF SPACE FOR ALL MY CANNING JARS OF FOOD, SO DECIDED TO GET A DEHYDRATOR AND SEALER THEREFORE I CAN STORE MY DRIED FOOD TAKING UP LESS SPACE!!
HERE ARE A FEW THINGS I DEHYDRATED!
TOMATOES WERE EASY BUT I FOUND OUT IT TAKES ALOT OF FRESH TOMATOES TO GET ALOT OF TOMATOE POWDER! I BEGAN BY SLICING REMOVING THE CORE AND WITH SKINS ON SLICED THEM THIN AND ARRANGED ON MY DEHYDRATOR TRAYS NOT OVERLAPPING! THIS TOOK SEVERAL DAYS BUT PRIDE AND FUN LOOKING AT THE FINISHED PRODUCT!
Sliced Tomatoes Drying
Food Grinder and Tomatoes
I ALSO DEHYDRATED PEPPERS CUTTING THEM INTO SLICES TO DRY THE SEALED THEM. IT COMES IN HANDY WITH THE WINTER CHILI AND SOUPS!