Where did October go?? Fall colors are turning brown and a lot of the leaves are on the ground. Our local government provides two Leaf Collections per Fall where they have large ‘vacuum’ trucks come by and ‘suck’ up all the leaves we have raked or blown to the curb. The first one came early for us this year so we have a yard full of leaves.
I haven’t had a chance to take any fall pictures this year, but here’s a picture from a previous year. We do have some lovely, old trees in our neighborhood.
Our household is not back the way it was, but we are settling into a new normal for the next several months. I’ve only puttered a bit in my sewing room, cleaning up & finding new homes for items that had been put in there for a short-time storage.
Returning to normal, I have been in the kitchen this week. First I made some Spicy Applesauce – YUMMY!! I got 3 pint jars. I didn’t freeze any this time as we’re eating it too fast! LOL!!
One small kitchen appliance I use a lot is my slow cooker. One day I pulled some stew meat out of the freezer, added some onions, potatoes, carrots, a can of cream of celery soup mixed with a package of Lipton Onion Soup mix & stock for a great Beef Stew.
Another day I browned some ground sausage with onions & green peppers, and put it in the slow pot with a mix of frozen vegetables (mixed veggies, carrots, green beans, & zucchini), canned tomatoes and a box of chicken stock. About an hour before dinner, I added a cup of elbow pasta. Yummy with a pan of cornbread!
Yesterday I got a lot done in the kitchen. I picked up a 7# Turkey Breast at the store this week. So, first thing in the morning I trimmed the backbone from the breast so it would fit into the Slow Pot, seasoned it with my version of Texas Dry Rub, added some celery & onion and 1/2 cup of apple cider and set it on low for 7 hours.
After starting the Turkey Breast, I got 3 bags of cranberries that were in the freezer. I’ve been looking at recipes for my new Power Pressure Cooker XL (an electric pressure cooker similar to the Instant Pot that is so popular these days). I found a recipe for Orange Cranberry Sauce.
With 3 bags of cranberries, I tripled the ingredients. I zested a large orange, then juiced it. I had to add a little orange juice to make 3/4 cups. Maple Syrup is optional, but I added about 4 Tablespoons. I used 3 teaspoons of some grated, semi-dried Ginger, which I often use to add to my tea. Finally I added 4 cinnamon sticks. It took 10 minutes to bring to pressure, then cooked 2 minutes, switched it to warm for 10 minutes to release the pressure. Using a potato masher, I mixed in about a cup of sugar while smushing the berries – then, voila! I have 3 small jars full and a partial medium jar. I will freeze the 3 small jars, but I promise you, they won’t last long. Try it on your peanut butter sandwich!
So the Slow Pot was full, and the Pressure Pot did it’s thing, and I couldn’t let the stove top feel left out. I took the Turkey Back I had removed earlier and put it in a 6 quart pot along with carrots, celery, onions, seasonings and about 4 quarts of water. After bringing it to a boil, I reduced the heat to a low simmer. It simmered for hours.
There, I have 4 jars of golden Turkey Broth. These will be great for gravy next week or added to soups on cold days ahead.
Hoping for some more quiet days this coming week. Maybe I can even get some time in my sewing room to actually sew something!