After arriving home from the tomato sauce party last Sunday, Jon and I were exhausted.  Needless to say that we didn’t make very much progress with the 15 or so bell peppers we brought home from the farm, nor the flat of strawberries or two bags of pickling cucumbers we bought at Pedrick’s on our way out of Dixon.

Monday night, our home just felt in disarray.  We weren’t fully unpacked from camping over the weekend, there were dishes on every surface in the kitchen, and we hadn’t been home to do the normal weekend things like laundry.  We made a long list of all the things necessary to get our lives back together and started tackling them together on Monday night.  We made major progress that night and had most of the list finished by Thursday night.  Some of those projects involved putting things in jars, of course.

One of the nights this week (I can’t even remember which), I broiled some tomatoes, the bell peppers and banana peppers brought home from the farm, some garlic, and some onions in the oven and then pureed them into a roasted pepper spread, which is based on this recipe (only changed because I had a bit more than the recipe calls for.)  I saved one jar for the fridge, and it’s really tasty on some crusty bread.

The broiled veggies.

The finished spread in jars.

My husband is such a big fan of the strawberry vanilla jam that we made earlier this summer.  This weekend, our friends spent some time talking about how it’s the only jam they ever want to make again because it’s so good.  I realized that we are down to only one jar, and that another batch before strawberry season was up was a good idea.

Strawberries macerating with vanilla beans – I cut them up on Sunday and made the jam on Tuesday night.

Simmering.

Finished jars.

We ended up eating some of this mixed up with whipped cream on Sunday night (a sort of strawberry fool) – I’m most proud that we didn’t have seconds.  It was good.

Saturday morning we spent at Rouge/Nick’s Crispy Tacos in San Francisco to watch the Auburn game with our Auburn family.  Let’s just say I’ll take the W any way I can get it.  When we got home, I intended to make pickles but instead ending up taking a 4-hour nap.  Must have been a busy work week.

Sunday morning I finally got my act in gear to make sandwich pickles.  I used the recipe from this book.

The spices waiting for their cucumbers and brine.

Cucumbers, just before brine is added.

Finished pickled.  Well, as finished as they get on the day you make them. 🙂  I’m excited to taste them in a few days!

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