In May, I go through my canning cupboards and freezer. I write down in my preserving notebook what quantities I have left, and then, based on that and on previous years, I make a list of what to preserve for the year.
It's always instructive to me to look back through my preserving notebook. I recall sources, methods, and quantities - I think I remember details well until I look at the facts! This summer, I flat-out missed preserving strawberries and sour cherries. To make up, I bought 20 lbs. of blueberries instead of 10.
The children and I froze the blueberries in a little window of time after supper. They were happy to handle the washing and sorting. I packed the blueberries in boxes and labeled them. It took us less than 45 minutes.
Below is my summer 2012 list of essential things to preserve. If cheap produce or energy presents itself, I will do greater quantities.
1 batch strawberry freezer jam - now just any jam will do
freeze sour cherries or blueberries
4-6 quarts dill pickles
6 dozen corn
1 batch pimentos
1 batch salsa
1 bushel tomatoes: 8-12 pints pizza sauce, 20 quarts whole tomatoes
1/2 bushel apples into sauce
5 quarts peaches
down to the river to play
8 hours ago