Anita and I did some canning over the Christmas holidays. Above is the photo of some meatballs and bolognese sauce I made; 22 jars of one and 17 of another. I also canned chicken, butter beans, & taco soup (with ground beef, hominy etc). It’s funny to say that it’s fun and work at the same time! I even think it’s relaxing/satisfying…go figure! I guess that’s what hobbies are all about! The pressure canner that I use is on the carousel below.
One of my favorite Christmas gifts from John this year was a new bread pan. With the help of our daughter Jesseka, who purchased it, boxed it up and had it shipped to us, I now have this… Read more »
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One of my favorite things to do is can meat. It relaxes me and gives me a sense of satisfaction when I see all the jars lined up on the shelves.
I always know when it’s time to can when I have a shelf of empty jars, so I start making my plans. This week I hope to can about 10 quarts of goulash. I’ve never canned this before but it would be nice to have it on the shelf. My sister-in-law, Vanita sent me spices as couple of months ago and it’s perfect for this. I’m also running low on my Spaghetti Meat Sauce seeing that I only have 2 jars left on the shelf.
The one of the things I would like to can is lamb, which would be excellent for Shepherds pie but I need to find it at a good price first.
Anita (child #5) will be here next Monday and we hope to squeeze some canning in for her too. Nice to travel down with empty jars and take up full jars of food and meats. They are very handy. I can have most every casserole ready in just a few minutes, no thawing of meat, just open the jar and add the already cooked meat to the other ingredients. Easy!
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We scrimped and saved for this meal to share with our friends and it was worth it! Here are some photos below. It was an American Thanksgiving with a few splashes of Spain added.
15 of our best-est Spanish & Brazilian buddies came to the house.
Today I spent: $0 on groceries
Total spent these last 19 days: 70,35€
Average per day: 3,70€
We called about a turkey at another market and got a better price: 3,95€ kilo! That’s better than the 5,40€ from the poultry store here in Loeches. Anyway, we ordered two 5 kilo birds because those are as big as they have them here.
All we invited are coming and we are so glad to have a shared day with them. I’ve prepared a Power Point with some photos and a mini presentation to project on our living room wall… just to teach them what THANKSGIVING is. As we Americans know, it is a day that we celebrate for very specific reasons.
I hope to post more updates after the 16th of this month.
After church today I opened a jar of my chili with beef that I had canned and we ate that over rice with a salad. For supper it will be more of the same or egg and toast.
Spent today: $0
Spent in the past 18 days on groceries: 70,35€
Average for these 18 days: 3,90€
cream of butternut squash -we had this yesterday as well, which I took out the freezer
Macaroni & cheese with ham
egg salad sandwiches on hamburger buns (last 2) & lettuce
* we had a wonderful blessing of receiving 2 jars of homemade olives yesterday.
I spent today: 11,50€
1 dozen eggs- 1,50€ (village food cost more and I forgot to bring my eggs!)
2.5 kilos of pork- 10,00€
Total spent for the past 17days: 70,35€
Average per day: 4,13€
NOT great if we are eating all of that food but these are meats that I have canned. Today I canned 39 jars of meat; both ground beef in 3 flavors; taco, southwest and fajita, and pork in taco flavor.
The idea may interest you from the standpoint that if you have canned meats on your shelves, then you have the makings for many “instant” meals. For instance, Seasoned Ground Beef can become:
- Sloppy Joes
- Spaghetti Sauce, when added to your home-canned sauce
- Pizza topping
- Instant Soups, when combined with your home-canned vegetables
- the list can go on and on, just use your imagination.
Won’t it be nice to have canned meat for quick meals right there on your shelf and less time to cooking when guests come or you’re just busy with other things?
Here are the photos:
Day #16: We traveled to the village today. We actually left a bit late, and got to the house at 8pm. We stopped in Coria to buy a few groceries. I plan on canning the hamburger for future meals. No one calls, no meetings… just work and I have time to CAN! I love that.
Spent today: 39,35€
37,20€- 8 kilos of hamburger (that’s 17lbs 6 oz)
0,60 cents-1 liter of whole milk-(John drinks whole milk)
0,20 cents-1 onion
1,55 euros-2 romaine lettuce
Spent the last 16 days: 58,85€ (but most of it is for the future.. canned ground beef)
Average spent per day: 3,67€ per day
Meat… I love the stuff! I especially like to can it. Last year for Christmas, John gave me a pressure canner and a couple hundred jars and 800 lids. I’ve run down my ‘stock’ considerably and I can’t stand to see those empty jars, so when I have a few days in my otherwise busy schedule, I prepare for a canning session. For me, there is a tremendous satisfaction in seeing the fruits of my labor on the shelves.
Did I mention how handy it is? I can the hamburger for example, with different spices added. Some may be taco flavor, or sloppy Joe flavor. Some with chili powder or onions and garlic or Italian seasoning. When I have a recipe I want to prepare, I just open a jar or 2 of the hamburger… ready to go. No defrosting or panic if I have unexpected guests come for a meal. I’m pretty well set all of the time.
Blessings!! Today I received a package from my friend Joye. It was the mother-load of things I love! Here is what she sent:
7 cans of jalapenos (really needed those!)
2 cans of cranberry sauce
2 boxes of pie crust mix
2 popcorn balls
wow! we are very thankful and blessed by these treats. All these foods we can‘t get here and how helpful for my Thanksgiving feast! We are humbled by the Lords goodness to us.
Still my total for spending the last 15 days is: 19,50€
Spent today: $0
I’m still pretty weak and tired from having the flu this week but well enough to starting thinking about preparing food again. We’re finishing up with the last of the casserole and other leftovers but am looking at making some macaroni & cheese with that piece of ham in the fridge. I think I’ll try to make it tomorrow when we arrive in the village for work.
I had cleared my schedule these past few days but I have a meeting tonight and one tomorrow before we leave.
I may spend money tomorrow on hamburger & ground pork because I want to can (preserve) while I’m in the village. It’s handy for me to have preserved/canned meat on the shelf since we lead such a busy life. My dear sister-in-law Vanita sent me some spices that I can add to the jars before I pressure cook/can them. Canning meat & chicken is one of my favorite things to do.
Total spent for the last 2 weeks: 19,50€ Total spent today: ZERO. Still sick… eating leftovers (that I fixed when we had guests last week) and a soup I made from the leftover zucchini and odds and ends from the garden.
Supper will be leftovers as well.
Day #13 and I have spent 19,50€ in the last 13 days. Today I didn’t spend anything… sick in bed, all plans canceled.
Day12 and I have spent a total of 19,50 euros for the past 12 days.
I baked lasted Thursday so I have plenty of bread, cinnamon rolls, coffee cakes and peach turnovers. Our guest left after lunch and I’m still left with:
1/3 of a zucchini (I cut off a small piece to add to my soup today)
1 tomato (since I pick 1 roma tomato and 3 cherry tomatoes from my ‘almost gone’ summer garden, I still have not run out!)
The truth is, I feel so RICH! There is always plenty of good food here and I enjoy the management of the kitchen and the planning of my meals. I guess I’m just like every other homemaker out there… we just love our job!
homemade sausage (I always have sausage on hand because I make it and then can it in jars… sealed under pressure)
french toast with syrup (I brought back some pancake syrup from the USA last time we were there)
Dinner: (Guest here)
1st plate: sausage & white ban soup (using the leftover sausage from breakfast, the broth from the chicken & sausage that I canned and then saved when I opened the jars, kale from my garden)
Tonight we are going with friends to a FREE concert with traditional hymns to celebrate the Reformation. Happy Reformation Day!! We will probably just eat some leftovers in the fridge before we go out.