Happy Wednesday Everyone!!! We are really excited to see Wednesday arrive!
One, it’s Wednesday which means only two more days and Walt will be home for another week of backyard vacationing!! I guess people call it “Staycation.” Never, ever, thought either one of us would find such joy in staying home instead of going somewhere but we love it, we have the best time together.
And two…….our garden gave us our first bounty!!! GREEN BEANS!!!
“In every gardener there is a child who believes in The Seed Fairy.” ~Robert Brault
We have been visited by The Seed Fairy and we are so excited!! The Seed Fairy waved his magic wand and wohlla!!! Green Beans!! Ok, so maybe it wasn’t a bounty……it was 9 green beans.
Before you laugh uncontrollably rolling around on the floor as we do the “Green Bean Happy Dance,” we are people who really do love and make use of everything in our garden. We can’t wait for the first tomatoes, peppers, green beans, squash, etc. to be ready for picking so we can have fresh vegetables on the table.
All three of our grandchildren love the garden. Josh, Kaylee and Eric check it out when they come over to see what progress has been made. Even Eric knows he needs the garden basket when he and Papa Walt go out to check the garden. All three of them love when Papa Walt picks them up over the fence and shows them which vegetables to pick. They get excited putting their finds into the basket and then running into the house to show me their treasure.
Gardening is something that we enjoy doing with our grandchildren. They get to see the efforts of planting, sprouting and eating. Good lessons…..good stuff!!!
Because the beans come in faster than we can eat them, we always blanch and freeze our green beans. I am not sure why I felt the need to do an internet search on the subject this time but I found this method on “e-How.com.” The only thing they do differently and that gave me an “ahh ha” moment was putting the beans on a baking sheet and pre-freezing them individually so that they don’t stick together when you put them all together in a freezer bag. I loved this idea and it’s how I froze my little 9 green beans!
Happy gardening everyone!!! I thought I’d share this method with you….. here is the website:
How to Freeze Fresh Green Beans
1 Pick green beans (also called wax or string beans) when the pods are tender and 4 to 6 inches long. Be sure to pinch the beans off the plant-rather than tugging-to prevent breaking the plants’ stems. During the height of summer you may need to harvest daily.
2 Place the beans in a colander and wash them under cool, fresh water. Snap off their stems and ends and set them aside. Then, fill your sink with ice water and bring a large stockpot of water to a boil.
3 Before you freeze your beans, it’s important to blanch (boil the vegetables for a few minutes). This process stops the enzymes that break down the beans’ nutrients, flavor and texture. To blanch beans, place them in boiling water for 3 minutes. Then, immediately transfer them to an ice water bath to stop them from cooking any further. I like to load about 2 cups of beans into a pasta colander insert. This makes blanching easier because I can easily move the beans in and out of the boiling water. If you don’t have a pasta insert, work in small batches and move the beans from the pot to the ice bath with a large, slotted spoon.
4 Dry the vegetables off and then arrange them in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Place the sheet in the freezer. As soon as the beans freeze solid, remove the trays from the freezer and pack the beans into freezer bags, leaving a half inch of room between the top of the beans and the bag’s closure. Freezing the beans prior to packing helps prevent them from sticking together. (LOVE THIS IDEA – NEVER HEARD IT BEFORE!)
5 Avoid freezer burn by squeezing out as much of the air from the bag as possible while sealing it. Then, label the bags with the date frozen and immediately place them in the freezer. The beans should keep in the freezer for up to one year.