Poor DS! This last summer I froze yellow and zucchini squash like mad and we had/have lots and lots in the big freezer. It produced really well and we needed to put away food like squirrels. After all, he would be/is now a teenage boy and the stories I had been told were that they eat lots of food. He does eat lots, though he is not even close to overweight. However, he quickly became tired of any dish with squash in it. No matter how I tried to disguise it, he groaned and complained when we announced “squash casserole”. I tried all kinds of different recipes but none really changed his mind. DH and DD tolerated the casseroles as long as there weren’t too many, too often.
It was decided when we planted the garden this year that there would be fewer squash seeds planted. We still have frozen squash and there was not any real need for more than fresh. I hoped the zucchini would do a bit more so I could shred it for cakes and bread. It seems those were the only ways that DS would eat squash and not complain.
The plants have had lots of blossoms but not so many fruits. However, I don’t want to feed them fried squash every day and the “zucchini” turned out to be a different variety with lots of large seeds and little meat. I have been picking both the yellow and the “other” variety while a lot smaller than I usually do and we had three or four of each kind on the kitchen counter with potential for more when I pick the garden in the morning. Since I wasn’t real happy with how the squash froze last year–I didn’t blanch and freeze it, but just cut it and froze it–I made a visit to my friend, Google.
Several sites later, I followed the directions on this one, and blanched my squash slices. After cooling, I removed as much of the water as I could and put the slices into sandwich bags. I then sealed them up except for a small opening that had a straw in it. Carefully sucking the air out of the bag, I quickly removed the straw and finished the seal. I dated and labeled each of the three baggies and put them in the kitchen freezer to see how they look when they are fully frozen. I’m hoping they will hold together better and have a nicer texture when I use them again. If not, something tells me the chickens will eat well.
DS did his best not to grimace or complain when I showed him what I had learned about removing the air from the bag. It produces a “vacuum-like” action that hopefully will improve how the are preserved. Now I need to find more recipes for using my cucumbers. Unfortunately, no matter how much we water, the cucumbers have a bit of bitterness to them. I can get rid of that through using them to make a relish or a different kind of pickle.
For now, the produce is dealt with and I will soon go to bed. I will post later on how the squash turned out and what was decided with the cucumbers.