I had meant to do a lot of canning and freezing before we left but there just wasn't time. So now that we have returned I am in full force this weekend getting the bounty of the garden taken care of.
I have started using my canner outside on the propane stand we use for frying turkeys and fish.
It's a lot easier and consistent. I can get the water boiling faster and keep it boiling for the processing time needed. And it keeps the house from getting so hot, uses less energy, and allows me to keep the kitchen free for making the actual preparation of the pickle and jam recipes.
Today I managed to make some pickled okra and pickled green tomatoes. My two most favorite of all times pickled items. I have a a fairly set recipe for my okra. I use this recipe below.
I add in different spices that I put in the bottom of the jar depending on what I still have in the cupboard. Usually there is a spicy dried red pepper, either cayenne or jalapeño. I like the color combination with the green okra and it gives them a little kick. I always add in some dried minced garlic or a couple of smashed cloves. Once again depending on what I have available. Then some dill. The first time I made the okra I bought fresh dill sprigs. I now have a dill plant and snip them from the yard. But dried would work just great too. Whatever is on hand.
This was my first time to make pickled green tomatoes. With our abundance of tomatoes I figured now was the perfect time. This is the recipe I used from a better homes and gardens special canning edition that can out last year. I hope it turns out well.