Tying up the week here with some odds and ends. The Great Spinach Harvest begins tomorrow and I'm looking forward to stocking the freezer with fresh greens. Spinach is my first real putting-up food of the season, and if the weather co-operates it won't bolt before I get a good supply in.
Husband likes his spinach with a splash of vinegar, but I'm partial to a gob of butter. As one of my friends says, "Anything that's a vehicle for butter is a good food."
This morning I finally got around to thinning two rows of carrots. Two very long rows. While my knees are sounding like castanets and I'm currently walking like Quasimodo, it feels good to have this chore done. This is definitely my least favorite garden chore. Ripping out perfectly nice little plants goes against the grain, and carrots aren't good candidates for transplanting. I do lay them alongside the living to help shade the soil, so that works.
Finishing up with the cherries now, and as promised, here's my recipe for a great cherry pie. You can wrap it and freeze it and it'll keep fine for about a year - but why wait? Don't keep your food in the freezer until The End of Time. Have a plan to rotate the stock so that you eat your frozen food while it's in the prime.
First, Ramona's No-Fail Pie Crust
1 cup Crisco
2 cups flour
1 Tsp. salt
6 Tbsp. ice water
Mix flour and salt thoroughly and cut in Crisco.Add ice water- 1 tbsp. at a time - and continue mixing. Roll out dough and shape into pie pan. You can bake it at 400 degrees F. for 8-10 minutes and then freeze OR you can leave it unbaked and fill it with -
Cherry Pie Filling
1 quart pie cherries (tart cherries)
1 1/2 - 2 cups sugar
2 Tbsp. cornstarch or flour
1/4 tsp. almond extract
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Mix all ingredients thoroughly in a large mixing bowl then dump the lot into an 8 inch pie pan. Cover with a perky lattice crust. Bake 20 minutes then reduce heat to 375 degrees for an additional 10-15 minutes or until crust is nicely browned and cherry mixture is bubbly. Serve with vanilla ice cream.