Monday, July 6, 2015

A Repurposed Olive Oil Tin and Frugal Accomplishments

Carolina wren
I'm happy to be joining in with Frugal Accomplishments today.  At Aldi's, I purchased produce, cheese, and a can of organic "salad beans" @ .89.  I've not liked any of the bean salads I've tried in the past, but the can contains only garbanzo, pinto and kidney beans with sea salt.  I think they would also be fine to add to soup or serve over rice.  I also tried their organic strawberry rhubarb frozen pops.  Really good! I went back and got more pops and beans, and a watermelon.  A Carolina wren has raised a brood of little ones in a birdhouse J created from an olive oil tin a few years back.  A number of birds have checked out the tin, but this is the first one I've seen set up house in it.  It's right out our front kitchen windows, which makes it easy to keep an eye on.

self heal
I thinned our beets, and canned my first batch of pickled beets.  I planned to can 7 pints, then switch over to sliced (non-pickled) beets, and it worked out to be exactly 7 pints.  That saved me having to work with both the water bath and the pressure canner in one day.  Next round, I'll can sliced beets with the pressure canner.  The beet greens all had lots of holes in them, so the chickens got those.  I've been looking at recipes for homemade mayonnaise.  We like using mayo made with something other than soy oil, usually safflower or canola, but I also saw one that used light olive oil.  If you've ever tried making your own mayonnaise, I'd love it if you'd share your experience.

black and blue salvia, bee balm
I harvested cucumbers, tomatoes, blueberries, blackberries.  I made Asian cucumbers, and canned dill pickle relish, using some red pepper frozen from last year's garden.  I hand picked Japanese beetles several times, and fed them to the chickens.  At the discount grocery store, I got several boxes of Emergen-C, pasta, and other odds and ends.  My favorite deal was a 15 lb. box of organic quinoa for $10.  Sale price is usually about $4/lb around here!  I plan to dry can the quinoa to add to the pantry.

We visited friends on Friday, and I brought Asian cucumbers and a jar of dill relish for the cookout.  I harvested tromboncino squash, and made a pasta dish with the squash, our tomatoes, basil and rosemary for the 4th, along with a caprese salad using our tomatoes and basil.  I stayed home this 4th, pondering thoughts of my Mom.  Last 4th was a few days before my Mom passed, and the last time she spoke to me.  I'm trusting the holidays will get easier with time.

12 apostles lily
The pups got grated squash or cucumber, and chopped purslane at various meals. I made yogurt and kefir, and weeded & thinned the carrots. All the carrot greens and end bits were frozen for broth.  I canned a batch of mixed berry syrup.  I'm dehydrating the seeds and pulp for bird suet.  The time of year when I begin to get overwhelmed with all the produce needing attention has arrived.  Remaining grateful for the bounty and doing what I can each day will help me get through, I believe.  


April said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE the birdhouse! That made my day!

Erika, "The Make Do Homemaker" said...

This is a super simple recipe for home made mayonnaise and really yummy. Just to warn you ahead of time, make sure everything is at room temperature or it won't emulsify!

Home Made Mayonnaise

Put into a measuring cup:

1 Whole Large Egg
1 Tsp. Lemon or Lime Juice
1 Tsp. Vinegar (white, rice, apple cider...just don't use balsamic as it makes the mayonnaise too sweet)
1/2 tsp. salt

The ingredients all together in the cup should measure about 2 ounces. Add enough extra virgin olive oil to bring the fluid level to 4 ounces, then enough tasteless oil (I use Safflower oil) to bring the total fluid level to 12 ounces.

I then pour the entire mess into a 1 quart wide mouth mason jar to accommodate any flying oil, put your immersion blender into the mason jar on the BOTTOM and pulse a few times. You'll immediately see the mayonnaise coming together. Stir the immersion blender around a few seconds to make sure you have all the oil incorporated and voila! Mayonnaise!

Laurie said...

Thank you, Erika! I will get safflower oil, and try this recipe. It sounds simpler than the others I saw. April, I love all our crafty yard art too :o)