Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Week 64

It's the great pumpkin, Charlie Brown. Yes, I'll gladly blame this one on DH.  He wanted to try some giant pumpkin seeds, and lo and behold, we got humungous pumpkins.  Okay, now what?  Funny how when I say I want to plant pumpkin pie pumpkins, he says the vines take over everything. He's correct, but at least we'd get some edible pumpkins out of it. Enough of my rant...

Look what else I have lurking in my garden.  No it isn't an oblong pumpkin, it's a cucumber.  I have several that mysteriously appeared when I didn't check the garden for a couple of days.  Never fear, if you remember last year, I made mock spiced apple rings.  Here's a recipe from David on the Canning2 Yahoo group, for another variation:


7 lbs. cucumbers, sliced 2 ways (I use big yellow cucumbers)
2 qts. vinegar
2 gal. cold water
5 lbs. sugar, or if desired less
2 c. pickling lime
1 tbsp. pickling spice
2 pkgs. red hots (cinnamon candies)
Red food coloring

Slice big yellow cucumbers, remove all pulp and seeds. Slice in desired lengths. Mix lime with 2 gallons water. Mix well. pour over cucumbers. Soak 24 hours. Drain well. Soak 3 hours in cold ice water. Drain. Tie spices in rag. Mix sugar and vinegar, put in spices and red hots. Pour over cucumbers. Let stand 12 hours. Add red food coloring, a few drops to make pretty red. Bring to boil. Boil rapidly 30 minutes, until cucumbers begin to clear. Pack in jars and cover with liquid. Heat lids and seal.

Of course you would want to update the canning instructions (I BWB for 10 minutes pints/15 minutes quarts - adjust for elevation of course) and rather than stocks I make rounds from peeled cikes that have the seeds
removed. Same sort of idea without the lime soak or the alum.  Pickle Crisp could be added as a firming agent.

Once canned and stores for a couple months the pickle is a dead ringer for spiced apple rings.

And, in case you missed this recipe on the Recipes page:
From the 1969 book, Homemade Bread edited by Nell B. Nichols, comes this recipe for:

Zucchini Marmalade
2 lbs. young zucchini squash (I'm using my immense 50 lb. zucchinis, thinly sliced.)
juice of 2 lemons
1 tsp. grated lemon peel
1 (13.5 oz.) can crushed pineapple, drained
1 pkg. powdered pectin
5 cups sugar
2 tbs. finely chopped crystallized ginger

  • Peel squash and cut into thin slices.  Measure 6 cups sliced zucchini into a large kettle.
  • Add lemon juice, peel and pineapple.  Bring to a boil.  Lower heat and simmer, uncovered, until squash is tender but holds its shape, about 15 minutes.
  • Add pectin.  Place over high heat and bring to a boil.  Stir in sugar and ginger.  Bring to a full rolling boil and boil hard for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
  • Remove from heat; skim off any foam.  Stir and skim 5 minutes to cool slightly and prevent fruit from floating.
  • Ladle into hot, sterilized jars; seal with hot paraffin.  Makes 5 half pints.
I would process this marmalade in a BWB for 10 minutes. (This is a different way to pawn off zucchini on your neighbors.)

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