Monday, 17 July 2017

Preparing for Winter in Mid July

People normally make green tomato chutney at the end of the season with the tomatoes that haven't ripened but I've made it early because we have a shortage of tomatoes and although it's easy enough to buy tomatoes to eat it's impossible to buy green tomatoes.  The chutney was finished on Friday and made 7 jars, 2 will be for the Christmas hampers I'm going to use the rest of the plum tomatoes, when they turn red, to make my Red Hot Relish. We've got the cherry  and mini plum tomatoes from 4 plants to eat fresh.

I hoed through the raspberry canes and fruit bushes and noticed that the blackcurrants had at last turned black so fetched a small bowl to pick them and was quite surprised when I managed to fill the whole bowl which turned out to be exactly 1lb. They've gone in the freezer for now and I'll turn them into  jam later perhaps adding a little apple to bulk it out. Not sure what to do with the currant bushes that were here. Out of 4 various only one had currants, maybe I'll cut them back hard and see what happens next year.

Also into the freezer went French beans and courgettes and more mange-tout peas.

Had a sort out of what jams we had left.........mostly from 2015 as I only made strawberry jam when we were in Ipswich  last year, and the answer was not a lot except gooseberry jam. Somehow that had got pushed to the back and Colin had just been grabbing a jar from the front so he's going to be a bit fed up with gooseberry jam  soon ......... 7 of those left and just 1 plum, 1 greengage and 2 strawberry.
Even less chutney left.  So I'll need more than just green tomato and red hot tomato, but plenty of cooking apples on our tree and I'll be looking at variations on apple chutney. There's an apple, ginger and honey chutney recipe saved on Word that I need to search out.

Thank you to everyone for comments on Friday about the job list. We're still trying to get as much as we can done  before I'm  home alone for 6+ weeks while Col is in Addenbrookes.

 The scrap wood from the garage roof has been cleared up.It was all the bits that the tiles sit on and they were really rotten. Nothing had been done to the roof since the garage was built in the 70's. The lads actually put some cross pieces inside on the rafters to strengthen the roof as they said it was a bit wobbly when they were re-felting. Thank heavens we know that the house roof had been redone a few years back otherwise we would be worrying about it.

As for the Saturday post and the book. Have I bought it?  Well, luckily I have grandchildren for an excuse and it's on it's way here I hope!

The chutney recipe is on the separate recipe page and I made half mix this year.

Back Soon


  1. Even tho' my preserving days seem to have gone bye I do like to hear of others who have the produce and the desire to go down that path. I seem to fill our freezer with soups and casseroles these days.
    Just curious as to whether you have just one big chest freezer or more plus a utility room to store all those jams and chutneys plus any other preserves.
    Or are they all in the kitchen?

    1. We have a chest freezer out in the garage and I have an extra cupboard in the back porch for all the jams etc

  2. You seem so industrious. I doubt anyone here does canning or preserving the way the Brits do. I really wonder why because we too have very seasonal fluctuations and prices rise through the roof for lots of fruit and veggies. Chutneys and jams may not be eaten a lot but I certainly think tomatoes, pineapple, mangoes canned would be wonderful during the off season.

  3. I love green tomato chutney, but haven't had any year for years, it is delicious isn't it so I can see why you have taken the opportunity to make some!

  4. Years ago a farming neighbour laughed when she found me picking blackcurrants from the bush. "You don't want to be doing that!" she told me, "Cut the fruiting branch back hard and make a pile of them, put them on the kitchen table and sit down and strig them in comfort." As the fruiting branches on the bushes should be cut back each year, that made sense to me and I've done it that way ever since. Except last year, when the Blackbirds beat me to EVERY berry (this year they "only" got the Boysenberries) and so nothing got cut back. It was an overgrown thicket this year.

    I am glad the book is on its way to you - not too much of an indulgence : )

  5. six weeks. I hope the time flies for both of you, that's a long time.

    You are always such a busy lady. x

  6. Green tomato chutney is one of my favourites but we haven't grown any tomatoes this year.
    I am waiting for Roz to bring me some fresh red tomatoes from work and then I will make some tomato and chilli relish.

    Glad to hear you bought the book-x-

  7. Whan I was a child my mother used to make green tomato churney and I used to have it on bread and butter instead of jam. It was delicious.

  8. May have to give green chutney a go. I've never tasted it but I do like chutneys.

  9. I love green tomato chutney one of my favourites

  10. So much chutney and ham being made by everybody at the moment. I wish we ate lots if it but we don't so no point making any really.

    Does the hospital offer any relatives room you could stay in so you can have at least a couple of days without having to drive? Xx

    1. I won't be driving there more than about twice a week as Col knows how much I hate driving!

  11. I am looking forward to making my green tomato and cucumber relish this year. Just hoping that the tomatoes start to grow a bit more.

    God bless.