Monday, August 25, 2008


Pesto is not a hard thing to make but my Aunt Linda was the one who introduced me to Pesto and gave me a lot of the love for cooking that I have. I have tried countless Pesto recipes and they are always disappointing so I went straight to the source of Pesto goodness and last night we feasted! So here is the best Pesto ever!

2 cups basil cleaned and dry
3 cloves garlic
2/3 Tbsp olive oil

Place basil and garlic in a food processor and start to process, then start to drizzle olive oil through the top and mix until combined.

Here is the secret. In a saucepan melt 2-4 Tbsp butter and add 1-2 cloves garlic depending on how spicy you like it. Saute garlic in butter until just starting to brown and add pesto. Let simmer for a minute or two.

Toss sauce with noddles, pine nuts, and lots of Parmesan! Its heaven!

Saturday, August 23, 2008


No I haven't given up on blogging here is what we have been doing...

If you have never canned peaches its the best and its pretty easy canning. Here is what we do.

  • Place jars in dishwasher and wash and then have them on a hot dry cycle so they will stay nice and hot.
  • Have a small pan with your lids on the stove on low, just to keep them very warm
  • I use a deep bath canner so fill that about half way and turn on to get it to start boiling
  • Make a syrup for your peaches. I like a light syrup so we do 5 1/2 c water to 2 1/2 c sugar. Bring this to a boil so the sugar dissolves and then turn to low.
  • Have a good sized pot of water filled 3/4 full and bring to a boil.
  • Place cold water with ice in a big bowl next to the sink
Your stove top should be sweltering hot and totally covered in pans now :)

To get the Peaches in jars:

  • In the big pot of boiling water stick your ripe peaches in the boiling water and let sit for 30 seconds to a minute. Scoop out and add to ice bath immediately. This will make it so the peach skin comes off very easy.
  • Peel the peaches and then cut in half and remove pit. Scoop out the red part where the pit was with a spoon carefully. You don't have to remove it all I just like to remove whats loose and comes off easy. Some people cut his out entirely.
  • Place a rag on the counter and with a second rag remove a hot jar from the dishwasher and set on other rag. Quarter Peaches and drop into jar carefully. You should fill the jar to the top. I fill it to the top of the inside of the jar. Not to the very top of the opening but about 3/4 inches below that. Tap very gently to see if there is more room but don't pack them in. Holding jar with rag again ladle hot syrup until it comes to 1/2 inches before the top of the jar.
  • Place back on counter and with a wet and clean rag, wipe the ring around the top of the jar. Take a lid out of the water and place on jar. Screw ring onto jar.
  • Process in hot water bath for 30 minutes if you are doing quarts or 25 minutes if you are doing pints.
  • Remove from water set back on rag on counter. Allow to cool and you should hear a pop after a while and you know that it has sealed itself. Sometimes this can take a few hours. The jars will be sticky so you need to wash them off before storing.
Some helpful canning hints my Mother taught me
  • Canning is about timing. Get your timing down and it will start to go fast. It helps to have 2 people. My hubby will peel the peaches for me and I do the rest.
  • There are some tools you can buy that are really helpful
  1. The funnel helps to put the syrup in without getting it everywhere
  2. The little stick at the bottom has a magnet on it and it helps you get the lids out of the hot water without burning your hands
  3. The last tool that I feel is essential is the one right in the middle and that gets your cans out of the hot water bath.
  • My mom taught me to have two types of rings. I have 12 rings that are rusty and yucky and these are the one I use on the jars when they are in the hot water bath. Then after it is done and cooled when I wash the jars I take of the rusty rings and put on a nice shiny ring. The hot water bath will make your rings rusty so I only use the same 12 in there to keep my other rings nice.
Its a long process so if you have any questions or something is not clear please ask.
We are gleaning the fields off of the peach farm here and we came home with over 50 pounds of free peaches! call around and ask if you know of some where around you where they have peaches. Often times they will let you go in after they have harvested and get the leftovers!