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A few pictures I took today. We had a frost here a week or so ago, then an even worse one that took out almost everything. Still, I saw this lone soldier this morning. After everything died down, there was a huge, perfectly ripe spaghetti squash that had been lost in the foliage all along. Then this, today. I got lots of seeds though, for next year.



Lost and lots of loofah. I made a video about how to speed cure unripe loofah, I'll post it in a day or 2, it's information I never could find anywhere, so I decided to post a tutorial of sorts. For all of the 12 loofah growers in the world. LOL




I got lots of tomatillos after the first frost. I made tomatillo and lime jam, it is fantastic. Looks like I can make another batch tomorrow, plenty more have showed up




So, apparently the Chupacabra chased a traveling burial insurance salesman down through the woods, and this is all that's left. Or, at least thats the way she seems to be bragging about it. Probably was some really old coot, 40 or older.

 

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Could you post the recipe for the jam zong? It does sound delicious.
 
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After I shucked and washed the tomatillos, I weighed them, 8 pounds. So, I halved the small ones, quartered the larger ones. I poured a 15 ounce bottle of lime juice in it and started slowly heating.Once I had it at a slow simmer, I added 3 cups sugar. It seemed plenty sweet to me, so I got out my immersion blended(stick blender) and worked with it a minute, that got rid of the skins. Went ahead and got the water bath canner out and put 14 half pint jars in it, started heating. Then put in a jar(4.7 ounce) Balls low sugar pectin, brought back to a boil for about a minute and a half.

I ended up with 14 half pints and 3 3/4 pints. Tomatillos are pretty citrusy tasting anyway, I was surprised that 3 cups of sugar was enough. You might want to tweak the sugar to your own taste. It cooled out nice and stiff, not runny in the least, so I was all around satisfied. Nothing quite as disappointing in the world of canning as having jam or jelly turn out watery.
 
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Loofah sponges, drying and bleaching in the sun. You just would not believe how many of these I have, but when they're all cured, I'll take a picture of all of them at once. Anyway, this is the preferred method here of drying and bleaching loofah sponges, no chemicals.

I guess everybody has their own notions about watery jam, but everything else being equal, I'd rather have it right than not. We swap out quite a bit of extra produce and/or canned goods at a local "grow here, buy here" sort of farmer's market, and looks are pretty important.

 

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So zong, on the loofah's, you just peel them and let them hang, right? Can you cut them in to different size pieces before they dry, or should you wait until they're dry? I believe I have seeds and might just plant them next year and give 'em a go.
 
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If they had dried on the vine, you'd just peel them, shake out the seeds, and wash out real good then dry, that would be it. These were still green, so I had tp squeeze out the pulp and stuff. I'm uploading a video to youtube now, I'll post the link soon as it's loaded.
 
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Here's my loofah video, Next time I grow these, I'm gonna pot them up in buckets in the house middle of February or so, so they'll have a good start when I set them out. I planted these in the ground around the end of April, and first of November, they were still green and growing. Maybe a couple extra weeks will let them ripen and start to dry.

[YOUTUBE]JSTgzpCVwJY[/YOUTUBE]
 

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I'll second what Terri said zong. Thanks for posting that. It was real easy to follow. If you have seeds to spare, I'd like some too.
 

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As always, zong, wonderfully informative! Seems like a lot of work and water spent to create a scrubber, but hey -- it's a loofah!! :D I'll take one seed, please. ;)
 
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Just finished up all the canning, I put up 4 gallons of butterbeans(ate about half) More tomatillo jam for a total of 12 pints. 17 pints of persimmon butter. 16 quarts of pickled pimento peppers, half nice and hot and the rest bread and butter. Still skinning loofahs though. I'm putting away all the canning supplies til next summer. My next project, soon as I order a hank of sausage casings, is venison wieners. I've been craving a deer hot dog with mustard, chili, and fried onions.

Soon as I finish cleaning the loofah, I'll send out loofah seeds to whoever wants some. I also found a few Japanese persimmon seeds, if anybody wants to bother with them. You don't just pot them up and expect persimmons next year, it takes a little studying, and some time. Still, Japanese persimmons are pretty nice to have.

So, loofah seeds, and ground cherry seeds. And some pimento pepper seeds too, I expect. The pimento is a thick-walled sweet pepper, the same that they stuff olives with, and make pimento cheese.
 
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