I don’t claim to have much of a green thumb…
But I can grow a mean patch of pumpkins.
Okay… Okay. Pumpkins are pretty easy to grow, so don’t be too impressed…But still… I’m going to take full advantage of my bragging rights.
This year I poked a handful of heirloom pumpkin seeds into my hugelkultur bed, just to see what would happen. (If you’re wondering “hugel-whaaaa??” then read this post). Last year, my maiden voyage as a hugelkultur gardener was a complete and total flop. But being the stubborn homesteader that I am, I decided to give it another try–after applying a generous amount old manure, of course. (Because manure fixes everything).
Apparently, the seeds loved the whole hugulkultur-thang, and they thrived. I ended up with around a dozen happy pumpkins from just a small corner of my garden.
I saved a couple of the littlest pumpkins to adorn my dining room table (because they are so cuuuuuuuute) and set to work preserving the rest. In years past, I’ve baked my pumpkins (using my finger-saving, no fuss method), blended them, and crammed the puree into gallon-sized freezer bags. But honestly? I was dreading the process this year…
I don’t like the whole freeze-the-pumpkin-in-a-baggie method because:
a) It’s messy to put in the pumpkin puree into the bag, and wastes a lot of pumpkin when you are trying to remove it.
b) It takes up valuable freezer space.
c) I am the WORST about remembering to thaw stuff before I need it, so having jars ready at a moment’s notice makes me super-duper happy. (This is the same reason I can my beef broth instead of freezing it...)
Therefore, you can imagine my homesteader-delight when I realize you can indeed can pumpkin. There are just a few rules you need to follow first:
The Rules of Canning Pumpkin
1) If you are going to can pumpkin, you must, must, must use a pressure canner--no exceptions.… [Continue Reading]