Thursday, March 8, 2012

Eating From the Pantry

Tonight I noticed that my entire meal came from my pantry.  Several years ago our county fair had a category in the canning department for an entire meal.  The requirements were to bring 6 jars of food that would make a complete meal.  You would bring a juice, entree, vegetable, fruit, pickles, jelly and so forth.  I got first place in that category the last year that they had it.  It is fun to see how you can make an entire meal just out of the jars of food that you put up during the summer. 

I can juice to drink, meat, vegetables, fruit, jams, pickles, relish,  pie filling, and sauces.  Everyday I open up at least one jar of food.  Most days I open up and use 2 to 6 jars of food. 

This group of jars makes an entire meal.  The tall jar in the back is cider I canned in the fall.  The quart jar on the left is venison.  I made venison stroganoff with that.  The quart jar in the middle is candy dill pickles.  My husband loves to just eat them right out of the jar.  The quart jar on the right is apple pie filling.  I made an apple crisp with that.  The pint jar in the front is carrots.  We just ate them heated up with some butter.  The jelly jar is full of grape jelly.  Great on bread or homemade rolls. 

I love to look at my pantry this time of year.  As the shelves begin to get empty I can find some things I forgot I still had. It is nice to find a surprise.  Especially when it is something my family really loves. 

 As I look over my shelves I start to take totals of what is left. I am out of pizza sauce but I still have plenty of spaghetti sauce.  I still have plenty of green beans but I am running low on other vegetables.  This also helps me determine what to can during the next canning season.  Things that I ran out of early I try to make more of the following year.  Some things I seem to have for a couple of years so I can less of that the following year. 

It is so satisfying to be able to eat out of your pantry.  I know that the food my family is eating is healthy and safe and I am saving a lot of money!!


Kathryn D. Duke said...

this is fantastic.... I am proud of my little strawberry jam and two kinds of pickles...your garden must be much larger and plentiful than gave me some good ideas though...thanks for sharing!!

nona said...

Great post. I found you via Frugal Days, Sustainable ways linkup. I too love to can my own produce and am just learning how much to make of each food. I use the water bath method with Fowlers Vacola jars. Come and visit!!