Sunday, June 29, 2014

Good morning from the mountain, more about garlic and onions and what to do with them....

Good morning from the mountain though it is a dreary one, it is raining and has been for many hours.  I will not have to water the gardens, so that is good, but I need to replant, so that is not so good.  It is already near 80 degrees F, and due to reach about 85 degrees F when I checked last night. 
So it is going to be a wash for most planting, I will still get the next round of corn going though.

Corn can be grown at least twice a season here and even if it does to set big ears, it will set perhaps some smaller ears that I can to add to Chinese food, baby corn.  The likelihood however is that it will make, and we will have even more corn.  With this weather, I am going to most likely dry it in the kitchen.  As with all things, one needs sunlight and heat to dry things correctly.

This is why I will clear the kitchen table to dry my garlic and onions today.  Garlic and onions must dry at least a week before storing.  With garlic, you want the outer skin to turn white and be a bit flaky.  With Onions, it depends on the color, but the skin should be dry and flaky on the outside as well, just like store bought ones.   I will replant more onions and garlic as they both with live year round, but grow slower in winter months.  If I know we are going to have cold weather I may through a pile of leaves over them, just to keep them going.  Even if the green parts die back in the winter be of no fear there are still alive and will push back through the soil as soon as temps allow. 

Garlic and onions can be produced easily and cheaply.   Buy a clove or organic garlic break apart all the little pieces and plant each small piece pointy end up, you can even do this in the pot.  Just as a heads up they love sandy soil, as you can see from the tire photos yesterday.  I have garlic planted in other places as well, and it just does not seem to do as well.   

Onions once you cut the bottom off to cook with you can replant it and unbelievable as it seems, it will become a whole new onion.  Now it is going to take some time, it is not an overnight thing.  But it is re-purposing and costs you nothing and yet you gain free onions.  At some point you should have enough growing to be able to do this without ever seeing a store bought onions again and much like the garlic, you can grow them in pots; every window sill in your home is a growing region for onions and garlic.  Because you manage their care, they will be perfect onions with no chemicals and lots of flavor.  You can even cut the greens to use as chives.

Oh, I almost forgot, if you use garlic powder you will save a ton of money, by just drying the garlic cloves at 120 degrees f for about an hour, after that break one and make sure they are dry. Then grind them or running them through a blender or food processor.  If you prefer, you can also mince fresh garlic and cover it in olive oil or peanut oil.  ¼ teaspoon is equal to one little clove.  It will keep many months that way.

If you are storing just the bulbs and that is great, I do that with some of mine, I find old clean hose works well.  You drop one in the toe, and make a knot above it.  Then  repeat, hang where the air can get all around the garlic, you will get about five to six months of storage that way, not that mine ever last that long, we eat a lot of garlic.  When you are ready you just cut one off, you can do this with onions as well.

Now you have control over that item and your food; anyone can do small steps to living better and towards making the world a healthy place to live. 
Back to my chores now as it nears goat milking time…

Be Blessed

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