This is what happens when 4 super cool ladies gather together to celebrate the Fourth of July. We took a different angle from barbecue and fireworks and decided to honor our foremothers and the independence that comes from a healthy local food economy and full pantry. We're not a traditionally patiotic bunch.
We started at the Minneapolis Farmer's Market (outside of my 'hood, yes, but worth it for these biking babes). Morgen carted 21 pounds of beets and greens and 12 pounds of green beans back to her house for us.
Heather, Jessie and Morgen
We got back and immediately got to work on prepping ingredients. We snapped the end of the beans, peeled the garlic, sliced the onions and cooked the beets enough to peel them.
Peeling and slicing beets made Heather and Morgen's hands look pretty brutal.
Our set up started out really neat and tidy and deteriorated from that point until all of Morgen's linens were covered in beet juice and I had lost a couple of garlic cloves behind her bookshelf somewhere.
Once we got into a rhythm, though, everything went really smoothly. We'd each have a job and fill the jars assembly-line style: Fill with beets/beans, brine, remove bubbles, wipe rims & seal. It was a regular sweatshop in there with all the steaming pots on the stove and the 9 hour workdays. [Yeah, I shouldn't make light of sweatshops. I know they're much worse that what we experienced. Sweatshop workers don't usually get hummus, crackers, and cold beer delivered to them while working]
At the end of the day we had (I believe) 28 pints of dilly beans and 6 pints and 6 quarts of pickled beets. Wait, maybe more beets. Probably more and I lost count.
There's not much sexier than a classy lady with a full canning pantry, right?
We're left with about a million bags of washed, roughly chopped, frozen beet greens for the next canning project. Spicy Lentil Rasam with Beet Greens, anyone?