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frozen.potatoes

* This post is part of my “Make Ahead Holidays,” series, which will go through Christmas. I will tell you how to make the big day(s) less rushed, and how to make your feast cost the least. At the end of the post, I will tell you how to prepare your mashed potatoes ahead of time for the holidays, and serve them hot with no mess, and no re-heating! 

There is a domestic urban myth that potatoes cannot be frozen. Now, you can’t just slice a potato and freeze it, that’s true, it must be treated, but frozen potatoes are a glorious convenience food, and a great way to stock up when prices are almost a give away.

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cranberry.sauce

* This post is part of my “Make Ahead Holidays,” series, which will go through Christmas. I will tell you how to make the big day(s) less rushed, and how to make your feast cost the least.

A couple of days after Thanksgiving last year, cranberries went on sale at Aldi for 19 cents a bag. You can imagine how my mind started swirling, as I stood in front of the display, and devised ways to employ said cranberries. To be honest, I was so dizzied with excitement, it bordered on manic. I make my own cranberry sauce, but I needed to quickly brainstorm, because tomorrow they could be gone.

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pressurecannedapplesauce

It’s apple season again, and I have apple sauce on the mind. Last year I didn’t make nearly enough to last me until the following apple season. Part of the problem was my methods – – which took a long time, especially considering I deal with 45 pound boxes of apples at once. The other problem is my family can slam a jar of apple sauce like no one’s business. I found a solution to both, and already have 10 quarts tucked away in my cozy pantry. While 10 quarts is a good start, it’s not nearly enough. I’m just getting started, and here’s how I’ll amass enough quickly to last until next season.

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relish.canned

Sometimes I open my pantry and gaze at my beautiful jars of food. The ruby red grapefruit, snugly nestled in the jar, the wheels of deep green jalapenos, sweet circles of citrus, and cubes of pumpkin are just some of the pretty put-ups lining my pantry shelves. None of them, however, transcends the exquisite beauty of home canned sweet pickle relish.

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canning.pantry

“Prepping” is a word hot in our culture right now. There is an inclination that food storage, elaborate first aid kits, and other means of preparing, is an indication someone is awaiting Doomsday. The truth is, for decades women would prepare for her family’s needs before the need came about. It’s a way to love your family, while being a good steward of your family’s income. Basically, the only new thing about it is the stigma.

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