Thursday, April 17, 2014

Food Preservation Planner ~ Free Printable


"Alexandra often said that if her mother were cast upon a desert island, she would thank God for her deliverance, make a garden, and find something to preserve. Preserving was almost a mania with Mrs. Bergson. Stout as she was, she roamed the scrubby banks of Norway Creek looking for fox grapes and goose plums, like a wild creature in search of prey. She made a yellow jam of the insipid ground cherries that grew on the prairie, flavoring it with lemon peel; and she made a sticky dark conserve of garden tomatoes... When there was nothing to preserve, she began to pickle."

~ Willa Cather, O'Pioneers

Though I have never read the book (and therefore am not endorsing it), the moment I saw this quote, I was smitten. I am "Mrs. Bergson". While my husband enjoys pouring over seed packets and catalogs in early spring, I begin my gardening journey by "digging" through food preservation cookbooks and archived recipes. 


What will we do with all the produce that is being planted? I contemplate recipes I have seen for sweet and colorful jams, salty sour pickles and other useful foods to stock our pantry. I document the recipes I want to try so they aren't forgotten in the hustle and bustle of it all.

Name
Can
Dry
Ferment
Freeze
Make Medicine

Artichoke







Beans







Beets








Bell peppers







We also like to make sure we have prepared certain foods for the freezer and that some foods get dehydrated. A portion of the herbs may be made into medicines or dried for teas. These goals are also recorded.

I don't like being in the kitchen at the last minute trying to come up with preservation ideas while those buckets of veggies are staring at me. It is very intimidating :) And so, this "food preservation planner" was born (sample of chart shown above).


The planner is broken up into three sections: fruits, herbs and vegetables. The most common produce have already been entered in our chart but there are also blank boxes that you can fill in with the garden goods that I didn't include. This is intended for both the spring and autumn harvests.


To give you an idea, in the bell pepper section, where it says "dry", I will write in "diced" because that is how I like to prepare part of our surplus. In the "freeze" section, I will pencil in "blanched strips" because I like to have these handy for pizza toppings and fajitas. In the "can" section, I will enter in "sweet & sour peppers". If applicable, I will include the web-source or cookbook page number for the recipes I hope to utilize. The fermented and medicine section for bell peppers would be left blank since I have no plans for them in those categories.


What about you? Are you a preservation planner or are you a seed packet gal? Perhaps you are both? I would love to share our printable with you if you are interested. Simply download from this link HERE.  You will find more pretty and practical printable projects here.


All the fine print. This post may be shared with some or all of the following link-ups: The Art of Home-Making MondaysModest Mom Monday'sMonday's MusingsMake Your Home Sing MondayGood Morning Mondays,  The Scoop, Tuesdays with a TwistRaising HomemakersWise Woman Link UpHomestead Blog Hop Wow Us Wednesdays,  Coffee and ConversationHomemaking ThursdaysHome Sweet HomeOur Simple HomesteadAwesome Life Friday Link Up and Create, Bake, Grow & Gather. Thank you lovely ladies for hosting these. This post may contain affiliate links (which are merchant links that help to support this site at no additional cost to you if you purchase an item through them). Clip art for this project was found here.

19 comments:

  1. Soooooo very excited for canning season, but first it has to stop snowing so we can plant. I love this idea and will be printing it out as soon as the house is awake!
    Rebecca

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    1. Sounds like you are a "Mrs. Bergson" too, Rebecca! Glad you will find this useful! At least this is something you can start planning before you are able to plant :)

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  2. Thanks so much for this and your work in putting it together. It will make staying organized and on track so much better. It seems every year I end up saying "or shoot I forgot I wanted to do".
    Lisa

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    1. Thanks for sharing Lisa, I do hope it helps. It is a lot of fun to plan and prepare :)

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  3. I hope to be able to can some of the food from my garden if I actually get it to harvest this year!
    www.marketsofsunshine.blogspot.com

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    1. I hope so too! We have a horrible ant problem and every year it is a full on battle... My husband ends up planting rows over (sometimes 3 times over) in order to recoup our damage... May your garden bring forth a bountiful harvest :)

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  4. I love this! Thank you so much. I do like pore over seed packets and enjoy planting, but I'm discovering that I really need to think about preservation or else we only have food for the summer months and in the winter I'm wishing I'd preserved some! I will be using this. Thanks for motivating me!

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  5. Glad this could help! Thanks for sharing Keri :)

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  6. cool! Love this, the chart and ideas w/notes will be very handy. No more relying on my faulty memory.

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    1. Hope this can be a help... Thanks for sharing here today :)

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  7. I can't download this file. Is it not available anymore? It looks so good. I really want it. Thanks for your help. Love your blog!!

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    1. No, it is still available. Go ahead and email me at pleasewritetojes@hotmail.com and I will send you the PDF file :)

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  8. This is a wonderful idea! I definitely want to use this system this summer. Thank you for sharing this.

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    1. I keep it going year round and add recipes to it as I see them... That way when that produce comes in, I know exactly what I want to do with it! :) Thanks for sharing here today!

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  9. What a great idea, thanks for sharing on Front Porch Friday We're featuring your post tomorrow!

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  10. I'm so excited for canning season! This printable will be super handy as I often end up writing notes on random paper scrapes and losing them. Thanks for sharing!

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  11. SUCH a smart idea with this printable! I still need to learn HOW to do all the canning and preserving first, but this will definiteyl still be helpful as I try to learn more about all that this summer.

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    1. Excellent! Preserving is so much fun and we share how to do it, STEP BY STEP, here:

      http://strangersandpilgrimsonearth.blogspot.com/2014/06/everything-you-need-to-know-to-start.html

      Have a lovely weekend!

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  12. Thank you so much for creating these forms! We are going to be doing more food preservation this year and these charts will be invaluable to planning and documenting what we want to do.

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