Sunday, October 3, 2010

Fall Diversions

I was going to title this post fall chores, because I've been going from job to job, for weeks bringing in and preserving a wonderful harvest. It's more of a privelege than a chore really, when I think of all the crops under water from our prairies to Pakistan. I feel lucky to have interesting and varied days adding to our food security, and when it gets tiresome theres always something different to do, unfinished projects like shingling the chicken house.
      My sweet neighbor invited me to help pick a gift of his  beautiful grapes. I thought they looked so pretty in the batch of grape jelly done, more grapes waiting in the freezer.
     Wild apples are everywhere. I'm turning them into sliced apples for the freezer for pies and apple crisp, dried apples for munching and cooking with, apple juice, applesauce, apple jelly.

I found a short cut this year to doing spagetti sauce. You slice the toms in two, add in some onion and garlic cloves, brush with olive oil and roast in the oven til soft. Dump into a seive til the watery liquid drains thru. Can or freeze that for soup base. Separate out the skins & seeds. The sauce is most of the way there.
Next I dump the sauce into the crock pot and let it simmer and cook down til the consistency is right. Add salt & pepper to taste, some fresh chopped basil and oregano, yum!

I can only stand so much indoor work on a nice sunny day, so I'm getting on with painting the trim and doing more   shingling on the greenhouse/henhouse. I've been working on some 3D designs in the shingles and the diamond patterns I'm especially pleased with because anything mathmatical with geometry is a really huge challenge for me.
The hinged barricade across the chicken door is to keep the nosy horses out, when the door is open for the hens to come and go. The greenhouse vents have two large hinged doors on the inside. I plan to add plywood winter doors up there on the outside.


Gwen Buchanan said...

I know I'm too old... but will you please adopt me!!!

I love what you are doing! and your chicken-coop/greenhouse is perfect!

Shelley said...

Wonderful - YUMMY!!
Yes, please can you adopt me too? (I am a bit younger - wink Gwen).
Great 'work'. Simply wonderful

kathi dunphy said...

Thank you, you sweet kids you!

Sue Steiner said...

me too! I want adopted too! :) Love your chicken coop and the basket of grapes is beautiful! I can imagine how wonderful they taste!

rauf said...

Nothing more rewarding than producing your own food Kathi.
hope the hens appreciate the design and comfort they are offered by you.
hope you are doing fine Kathi

organic-momma said...

oh i did enjoy your blog and I'm glad you found me! i hope you follow mine im adding yours now!

kathi dunphy said...

Sure Sue, I'll adopt you, as long as all the horses come with you!

Nice to have you visit Rauf. My granny used to say, "You're closest to God's heart in the garden." I think thats why nurturing plants is so satisfying to the soul.

Organic momma, even tho our climates are so very different, we gardeners have so much in common.

henbogle said...

Hi Kathi,

I'm a Maine gardener, henkeeper and blogger from Maine. I came across your blog somewhere, and am so glad I stopped by, I love your beautiful chicken coop!

We need to re-shingle our garden shed soon, and you can bet I will keep your cute ideas in mind when we do so. Happy winter!
Ali @ Henbogle