I enjoy sharing gifts from our garden for the holidays. I always make lots of extra jars of pickles and, when we have a good apple harvest, apple butter. I share our garden bounty as hostess gifts for holiday parties. At this point in the year, though, with summer veggie season over, if you didn’t can pickles, you really can’t start now. Store-bought cucumbers now will be the wrong variety for pickling, plus they’re coated with wax, which will keep the pickling brine from penetrating, no matter how hard you try to scrub it off. Instead, look to apples and peppers for gifts from the garden.
If you had a big apple harvest, you can still make apple butter. Apple butter is a luscious version of apple sauce, full of spices and cooked down into a decadent caramel flavor. Let me know if you’re interested in a recipe.
If you did well with hot peppers and froze or dried some successfully, you can still make pepper jelly, Pepper jelly is absolutely wonderful served on crackers or toast with cream cheese. You control the heat by your choice and quantity of peppers. I make mine with cranberry juice, so it’s got a ruby-jewel color that’s perfect for the holidays. I’ll be happy to share a recipe. Just ask!
What gifts from the garden do you give? Chow-chow? Strawberry jam? Pie filling? Do tell!