Pioneer Woman at Heart

One Flourishing, Frugal and Fun Family!

One family learning to live off the land, cut back on expenses, and to live a simpler and a more self-sufficient lifestyle.

Adopted Motto

"Eat it up,
Wear it out,
Make it do,
Or go without."
~A Pioneer Sampler, by Barbara Greenwood~

Friday, September 25, 2015

Tidbits ~ Freezing Celery vs. Dehydrating ~ From Pile to File Recipe

Yesterday's sunrise.

I came across some broad leaf plantain in my flower garden yesterday.  You know me.  I had to stop weeding, pick some leaves, and prepare them for drying.

I managed to finish weeding the herb garden, and most of the flower beds, despite aches and pains.  I have a few more flower beds left to do, then the rose bed.  Once those are once again tidy, I get the joy of sorting barn boards.  First, I'm picking out a few for my signs for myself.  Hubby said he'd rather not mess with driving the 2 1/2 hours to try and sell barn signs, so we'll just make some fun things for ourselves.

While he's at work, I'll be loading a cart to haul the bad boards to the burn pile.  Where I'll be singing some Johnny Cash.  "Burn, burn, burn...."

I got the night off last night, so I am rested up.  Hubby had an appointment after work, which put a day's delay on the barn, but I was okay with that.  There was no complaining on my end.

I'm posting the recipe exactly as it is printed, and you can adapt to homegrown/organic with it.  I'll be honest.  I did not use chicken broth as stated.  I had some vegetable blanch water from last year that I froze, and used that.  It tasted great too.  I still have some canned tomato paste from 2014 as well.  Oh, and I used frozen tomatoes from the garden vs. buying them canned from the store (you could use home canned tomatoes too). 

Remember the celery I froze?  I dehydrated some too.  I think I am a better estimator with frozen when cooking, but either way, they come in handy.  With the frozen you maintain the water.  With dehydrated celery you just need to re-hydrate it again before using it.

I still had celery in the freezer that I needed to use up, and I had no fresh celery on hand.  They say it is good up to 3 months, but it's been six months and it tasted fine.  I just put a few of my celery cubes right into the crock pot. 

I did not add the sugar. 

Chicken Vegetable Soup
1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
2 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
2 cups cubed cooked chicken breast
1 cup frozen corn
2 celery ribs with leaves, chopped
1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
1/4 cup dry lentils, rinsed
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons dried parsley flakes
1 teaspoon dried marjoram

In a slow cooker, combine all ingredients.  Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours, or until vegetables are tender.  Yield: 8 servings.


Mama Pea said...

You're so busy as it is I can easily see why driving 2-1/2 hours to sell painted barn board signs wouldn't be a sensible thing to do. Can you use any of the boards as kindling or fire starters for your wood fires this winter?

I've been very unhappy with my dehydrated celery so I'm going to try your method of freezing it. Sounds a lot better to me. Thanks for making me think of it.

Although we're still having warm (and humid!) days, I'm really getting in the mood for soup. The cook around here has been using up all my stash of good soups put by so she now needs to get busy to restock!

Kristina said...

Mama Pea, any untreated wood can be burned as kindling in our stove, so I hope to get busy sorting wood tomorrow (or yet today). I do like the frozen celery too. I just put it in ice cube trays and add enough water to freeze, then pop out the cubes into a freezer bag.

Susan said...

I just this morning dehydrated some celery. I should have read your post first! Next bunch will be frozen. I am going to try that soup - I live on soup all winter and making it in the crock pot/slow cooker is a bonus!

Kristina said...

Susan, this year I am trying to make sure I have stuff like that on hand for winter. I love soups during winter and love the crock pot too.

RB said...

The soup sounds good, plus - I LOVE making things in the crockpot.
God bless.

Kristina said...

RB, thanks. I love crockpot recipes too.