Friday, 8 May 2009

The Great Frost

Autumn announces itself with a gentle turning of leaves, winter blasts it's icy warning with a frost capable of turning tomato leaves to black slop and NZ yams to a brownish slump, pumpkin leaves are limp seaweed hanging from drooping stems. Oh well. I manage to get half a wheelbarrow of tomatoes good enough to bottle. Between Trev and I we've 45 1.5 litre or bigger jars full of them. Plus pasta and tomato sauces using Trev's mum's recipe
Pumpkins are salvaged and stored, the yams stay where they are, they're capable of their own small resurrection at this advanced point and will continue to develop tubers under the ground. Though this bandicoot has rooted around for a couple of meals worth already.

On to the apples, bottling of which I'm onto today - it's wet outside and great weather to slave over a hot stove in.


Naomi said...

The frost must be both beautiful and frustrating! Hope you enjoyed bottling those apples - any chance of a picture?

Cheers, Naomi

mountainwildlife said...

I know the devastation of frost .... but your photos are so beautiful ! I'm interested in your bottled apples too- quick tutorial? :-)

Linda Cockburn said...

Thought about going the whole hog and taking step by step pics, then figured, someone else would already have done this, surely?
They have.

I use the Fowler Vacola system, it's the most common in Australia, but have also used the NZ Agee jar system too. Would love to find a system that has zero waste. I've purchased stainless steel lids and will be able to re-use them for years, not so the rubber rings that seal the jars. You don't need brand new stuff, you'd be surprised how many dusty jars are sitting in secondhand shops waiting for a home. You don't need an electric unit either - I've got the wood stove top unit, but have ended up using a steel bucket with a metal 'spacer' at the bottom so the jars don't sit straight on the bottom close to the direct heat, because the jars would crack.

I've put this link in only so you get an idea what it all looks like and the components of the system.

this one gives a few hints on how to go about it.'s%20Vacola.pdf

This is a blog dedicated to the subject.

And this is a site dedicated to Australian preserving and canning, canning being the US word for preserving, a bit of a misnomer as they use jars not cans.

Naomi said...

thanks Linda :)