Tag Archives: tomatoes

Yippee it’s Burpee time!

Y’all know what time it is?  Yes, it’s still winter, but …… this is the time to start thinking about starting those seeds for planting this spring.  The hubs and I have started taking inventory of which seeds we need to replenish, making plans on what we are and aren’t going to grow this year, how and when we are going to plant, well, you know, all that good stuff.

This is what we bought last year.  We tried a few new items last year and quickly learned they do not do well in our soil.  So, we are marking off Brussels Sprouts, Cauliflower and Broccoli.  We are also marking off Sweet Banana Peppers and replacing them with Pepperoncini and Jalapeno; they seem to sell better at the Farmers Market.

http://www.burpee.com

burpee

And here is a comprehensive, well maybe not comprehensive, but a list, of what we will be adding to our other list.  Notice some things have been marked out; that’s because we already have these seeds on hand so no need to buy more.

mylist

I would like to companion plant this year but the hubs thinks it’s too much trouble.  What do y’all think?  Should we?  If you think yes then please help me convince him by leaving a comment and I’ll make sure and read it to him!  Thanks Y’all.

Also, if you have any questions about seeds or gardening just ask.  We will be glad to answer your questions to the best of our knowledge.

Okay, now get out and get to planning and get ready for planting!

agarden

God Bless,

Dana


The Wisdom of a Virtuous Woman

The Wisdom of a Virtuous Woman- SouthernGalsCook.com

 

Proverbs 31:26 She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.

Proverbs 14:1 Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands.

Yesterday {Tuesday} was the second night in our VBS studies of The Virtuous Woman found in Proverbs 31. On Monday, the character trait we focused on was Faith. Tuesday we talked about wisdom.

My {Tangi} husband is teaching the high school class and one of his students quoted this:

Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.

It made me chuckle, but what a great way to put it.

I wonder how many times God has looked down at me from Heaven and saw me trying to put tomatoes in the fruit salad.

Do you pray for wisdom?

Myself? Not nearly enough. Usually, I ask for Godly wisdom when I have made such a mess out of things already.  How different the landscape of my life would be if I had asked God to give me wisdom to begin with!

God knows that I need Him.

I need Him so much.

Generally, when I think about the verse Proverbs 14:1 Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands., I imagine a woman with scandalous behavior. I think of a woman who is dressed like a “woman of the night”, leaving her family to commit adultery and spending the grocery money on parties and clothes.

I know there are women like that, but that is just one side of the spectrum.

Women can damage their families just by being careless. 

My husband made an excellent point to his high school class. He told them that there are a lot of smart people who are not wise and there are a lot of wise people who aren’t book smart. He went on to say that people who usually don’t make wise choices tend to have a lot of conflict in their lives. He went a little further and told his class {all guys} that if they marry a woman who had a habit of making unwise choices, those consequences would follow her into their marriage and effect their relationship. Isn’t marriage hard enough without added strain?

Am I right?

Can I get an amen?

..Ahem… moving on…

As you can see, my hubby is very wise. After all, he married me. 😉

I can’t help but to be honest with you. There are so, so, so, many things that I am not good at. I fail constantly. I’m impulsive. I can be selfish. I can be stubborn. I internalize my feelings until I explode– I have a long fuze, but it still ain’t pretty. {Gosh. Y’all pray for my husband!} I’d go on, but I’m embarrassing myself.

I really DO want to be a woman with Godly wisdom.

I really DO want to speak wisdom into the lives of my children.

I really Do want to help my husband by being that partner that helps him in making wise choices about our family.

Jesus really does love me. Not only does He love me so much He shed His blood for my soul, but He also has to deal with me. I’m thankful for His grace.

May God bless us with wisdom and may we all put our tomatoes in the correct salad. 😉

Tomatoes: From Frozen to Canned

 

Tomatoes: From Frozen to Canned- SouthernGalsCook.com

I have a confession to make.

I. Am. A procrastinator… There! I said it.

It’s a sad truth and one that I am always trying to overcome.

But I have to say that sometimes it’s not my procrastination that gets in the way of my “want to’s” or “need to’s”– sometimes it’s just life! And nothing makes me more sick than having to throw away tomatoes that went bad before I had the chance to do anything with them. It takes time to can them and there are times when it will be more than a week before I have enough time to can a bushel or two of tomatoes. What is a girl to do?!

Needless to say, when I found out that you could FREEZE whole tomatoes to can later, I was elated! I have done this many times and each time I’ve canned them, the tomatoes taste as fresh as they did the day I picked them.

All you have to do is to wash them and let them dry completely. When they are dry, seal a single layer of tomatoes in a gallon-sized freezer bag.

I did notice that a lot of the tomatoes split when they froze, but as long as you get to them before they are freezer burned, you’re in good shape.

This weekend, in anticipation of the garden coming in and needing to freeze more veggies, I decided to free up some freezer space by canning the last of my tomatoes.

Here is how I take my tomatoes from the freezer to canned. In this case I made our favorite salsa {this recipe can also be frozen or eaten the next day}:

I used-

10 cups pureed/hand crushed tomatoes {most people use Roma, but these were beefsteak tomatoes}

1 pouch Mrs. Wages Medium heat Salsa mix

1/2 cup Bragg’s Organic Raw Unfiltered Apple Cider

2 tbsp Granulated Garlic Powder

Tomatoes: From Freezer to Canned- SouthernGalsCook.com

 

Tomatoes: From Frozen to Canned- SouthernGalsCook.com

1. Take out your precious rubies and inspect them. Make sure they aren’t freezer burned.

Tomatoes: From Frozen to Canned- SouthernGalsCook.com

2. The coolest part– when you run the frozen tomato under hot water, THE SKIN SPLITS AND PEELS RIGHT OFF!! It’s so much fun to do AND it saves a lot of time!

Tomatoes: From Frozen to Canned- SouthernGalsCook.com

3. After you have gotten the skin off of the tomatoes, you have to let them thaw. You don’t have to let them thaw completely, but do let them thaw mostly. I set them out at 11:00 a.m. and they were ready to process at about 7:00 p.m.

Tomatoes: From Frozen to Canned- SouthernGalsCook.com

4. Once your tomatoes have mostly thawed, drain the water off of them, remove the stems and any unsightly spots. Now you are ready to puree and crush! Some of you may prefer diced. That’s fine. We like ours to be a little chunkier than what they serve in Mexican restaurants so a combo of pureed and hand crushed is perfect.

Tomatoes: From Frozen to Canned- SouthernGalsCook.com

5. In a large stock pot and over medium high heat, pour in your tomatoes…

Tomatoes: From Frozen to Canned- SouthernGalsCook.com

… and stir in 1/2 cup of 5% Acidity vinegar {I chose Bragg’s ACV but the recipe on the Mrs. Wages package calls for distilled white} and 1 pouch of Mrs. Wages Medium heat Salsa Mix and granulated garlic powder. Bring to a boil and then back the heat down to a simmer. Simmer for 10 minutes and then you are ready to can! Be sure to add a couple of tablespoons of lemon juice to each jar if you are canning. As mentioned above, you could also freeze this or put in an airtight container, refrigerate, and serve the next day.

Tomatoes: From Frozen to Canned- SouthernGalsCook.com

I got 2 quarts and almost a full pint from this batch. I didn’t have quite 10 cups of tomatoes– more like 9, but that’s okay. It still tastes great! You can add in some jalapeno if you want to.

A couple of side notes–

1- Since your tomatoes lose a lot of liquid in the thawing process, it makes for a thicker salsa. We love it!

2- mrswages_2267_10043009

We are not endorsed by Mrs. Wages, but I love the product. It’s all natural AND it doesn’t have cilantro in it. I do not like cilantro. You could add it if you wanted to. The ingredients are: DEHYDRATED VEGETABLES (ONION, GREEN BELL PEPPER, JALAPENO, CHILI PEPPERS, GARLIC), SALT, SPICES. It tastes so, so, so, good. We add a pint to our chili instead of diced tomatoes!

3. acv

We are not endorsed by Bragg’s, but again, this is a product that I love and believe in. Not only is it awesome in recipes, but the health benefits are incredible!

If you have any questions about this recipe, leave it in the comments section below or email us at SouthernGalsCook@yahoo.com

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Feed Them For Life: Life Lessons From the Garden

Psalm 34:10-12 The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the Lord shall not want any good thing. Come, ye children, hearken unto me: I will teach you the fear of the Lord. What man is he that desireth life, and loveth many days, that he may see good?

We’ve all heard the old adage, “Give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.”

This summer, that thought occurred to me as I worked in the garden with my children. We learned the true value of a good sweat.

I was able to remind them of the burden that was given to Adam after he had eaten of the forbidden fruit, “In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return. Genesis 3:19″.

They had to learn to recognize the enemies of our food supply as well as our natural allies. We discussed God’s timing. Not only were my children picking squash, tomatoes, corn, and beans; they we were harvesting something greater than bodily nourishment. They We were harvesting knowledge.

The Wheetshire Garden

The Wheetshire Garden

Through the rows of peaches ‘n cream corn and above the okra shrubs, little voices merrily exclaimed, “Momma! I see a squash bug! I better squish it before it kills this plant”

“Momma! Look how big my pumpkins are getting! All that rain really helped.”

“I found a few lady bugs and put them in the tomato plants.”

That’s music to this momma’s ears.  I find myself smiling at this moment.

photo 3This post was meant to be about the importance of teaching our children gardening and self-sufficiency skills.  I had plans to use words like “GMOs”, “carcinogens”, and “Monsanto”.photo 1

I was going to toss philosophy around suggesting that we are God’s design and that everything we need to survive, He created in those first 6 days of creation.  All truths, however, the only things that I can think about are the carnal and spiritual lessons that God has shown me through this passion of mine. After all, isn’t the beginning of knowledge the fear of the Lord?

God’s timing? Do our provisions not come from He that feeds the sparrows and clothes the lilies, therefore we have no need to worry? Should we not trust in the Lord and lean not unto our own understanding? As the song says, “All I have needed thy hand hath provided…”

Teach a man to fish? Didn’t Jesus feed the multitude with just a few? My son leads our dinner prayer and ends it with “By HIS hands, we are fed…”

Recognize our enemies? Yes, there are those that try to decimate all that is good and they attack from all sides. They attempt to leach out our strengths and keep us from growing and bearing fruit. They try to take away our hope and block The Light.

Our allies? They are our brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus; our church families. They help us to attack and snuff out the Enemy. They combine their Lights from within to chase away the looming Darkness that shadows us while we are weak. We are strengthened and are able to take in nourishment to grow and mature.

I like this quote from George Bernard Shaw:

            The best place to find God is in a garden. You can dig for Him there.

Should we learn and teach our children how to garden? I think so. But it’s imperative to teach them to love and respect the One who created everything that grows in it, whether you garden or not.

~Tangi Wheet

photo 2
 

Can You Put a Price On Knowning Where Your Food Comes From? Is Gardening Worth It?

Isaiah 61:11 For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth; so the Lord GOD will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations.

Posted by Dana

As gardening season comes to a close I am reminded of all the harvest I have canned for feeding my family though the winter months.

I have canned green beans, squash, kraut, tomatoes and pickles.  I have in my freezer many, many bags of corn and cabbage.

Is it worth it all the hard work and labor that is put into knowing where my food comes from?  My answer, a resounding ABSOLUTELY!

And I am not the only one that feel this way.  A very dear friend of mine, Mrs. Tangi Wheet, feels the same way.  As a matter of fact, she is the inspiration for this post.

Tangi

She writes …..

Is gardening worth it? Can you put a price on knowing where your food comes from?

Well, for kicks and giggles, let’s do a little math.   I will not count labor, because I don’t know how long I have spent out there, but I enjoy it so much, that “labor” is way too severe of a word.

Actually, for me it would be therapy, so that’s MORE savings, right? What is therapy running?  $100 an hour?

Anyway– We put in $42.36 into our garden.  That includes seeds, tomato plants, jute string, and weed barrier.

To date, we have picked close to 300 lbs of organic produce from it.   Just this morning I have picked 32.8 lbs of organic tomatoes that would have cost us about $60 at market or grocery store.

Is gardening worth it?   At the Wheetshire, without a doubt!

Here are a few pics of her beautiful garden and her bountiful harvest.

Tangi garden

Tangi basket

Tangi veggies

Tangi is a beautiful, talented, Christian woman (whom also happens to have a green thumb) and I am proud to call her my Sister-in-Christ!

Hopefully, I will be able to share more of her talent in the very near future.

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