For my birthday, I asked for a FoodSaver preserver. It's a great little machine that sucks the air out of packaging so that the food you freeze remains preserved much longer. Even though I got it about a month ago, I finally was able to pull it out the other night to try it out on three family bulk size chicken breast trays I got on sale.
It works FANTASTICALLY!
I LOVE IT!
There I was at 9-o-clock at night, snipping off bags from the roll, seal one end, filling the bag with chicken, and then vacuum sealing the other end. I labeled each back with contents and date, and popped it in the freezer.
This new gadget, along with my new canning equipment will be put to much use next summer, as I hopefully start shopping a lot more at local farms, and buying up in bulk to preserve for the winter.
Yes, I am aware how crazy this sounds, since I have at least 5 major grocery stores within 5 minutes of my house. Yes, I am aware how time-consuming of a task it will be. And yes, I am aware how much tastier fresh farm food is, and how much better it is for us, knowing the grower and the exact process of how my food came to my dinner plate. A friend looked at me a little crazy the other day when I mentioned my new plan. But then I said: well, what else do I have on my plate? Seriously - I don't work outside the home; I'm home every day with my kids. I'm sure I could find one day a week throughout the summer that I could spend preserving food.
I'm hoping it will become a little bit of a friend and family event. This year I canned pears with a friend, and we had a blast (and her husband was very grateful he wasn't the one who had to help her peel bushels of pears!). The images hearken back to a day when members of a family sat out on the front porch peeling potatoes, mothers and daughters baked up pies in the summer kitchen, or church friends gathered to pick strawberries and boil them down into jam. Now that's community!