I recently celebrated my thirtieth birthday, and my big present was a dehydrator (which ought to tell you how exciting I am). Last weekend I dried zucchini and summer squash. Though they're not crunchy enough to eat as chips, they're surprisingly sweet, and will make great additions to soup mixes.
Today I'm drying radishes:
You can't freeze 'em, and you can only eat so many fresh before your tongue goes numb. I found this recipe for spicy radish dip that calls for dried, powdered radishes. I also think they'll make neat little spicy croutons.
I've been canning, too. Jam, so far, but come August there will be pickles galore. Jam, pickles, and fruit in syrup went quickly last winter, as gifts and in our own kitchen. Juice concentrates got less use, so I'll likely skip them this year.
Thanks to a late frost, strawberries were fleeting this summer, and I only got in a half dozen jars of jam before they were gone. Raspberries are thriving (my berry man at the farmers' market brags about his "bumpah crop"), and I'll be making another batch of jam tomorrow.
I know this winter I'll be too busy to shop for or prepare healthy food, and I'll be glad I set all this aside. Still, after 7 hours of standing at the sink peeling carrots and shucking peas, I can't help but think what hard work this slow food business is! How did those pioneer women do it without comfortable shoes or running water?