We’ve reached peak garden season here. Not only our own but also goodies from friends and neighbors. I happily take homegrown fruits & veggies if someone is giving them away.
Some we eat right away if it’s not something we are growing. Even if it’s something we grow I’ll often take it because our garden size is limited by deer. I’d love a larger garden than we have right now.
I usually keep fresh produce fresh until it starts to approach over ripe and then I’ll preserve whatever it is. Right now I’m freezing quite a few tomatoes, zucchini, bell peppers and yellow squash.
We eat squash at least three times a week right now but still have some left so I have been washing, chopping into chunks and throwing them in a ziplock freezer bag. I do the same with tomatoes- wash and just throw them whole into a bag skin and all.
I keep a gallon bag of each in the kitchen freezer and just keep adding to it until it’s full. Once it is I put it in the chest freezer and start a new bag in the kitchen freezer.
This way I can in minutes save more summer produce for winter use. It is usually done as I’m prepping veggies for dinner anyway.
The yellow squash I will use when I make broth which I do about twice a month. The butternut I’ll use in muffins or breads. I make this yeast bread a few times a year.
It’s very mild no overt squash flavor, it’s rich but light and such a pretty color.
The tomatoes will be used in broth but also is a wide variety of sauces, soups, stews and chowders. I just throw them in whole and let them cook down. The flavor punch a home grown tomato adds to a fall or winter meal is so good.
The Bell Peppers I do chop/seed and then put in a freezer bag, but the hot peppers I dry and then keep in glass jars.
Don’t be overwhelmed when your garden is at its peak and if you don’t garden yourself it’s a good bet that you have a friend or neighbor who would love to share in their bounty.