I'm going to be up until probably midnight tonight, because I had the bright idea to can an acorn squash. A quart of winter squash requires an hour and a half processing time, that's not including letting the cooker depressurize so I can remove the jar. It'll be midnight or so - in the meantime, it's me, a glass of Roditis (my favorite Greek red wine), and my computer.
I went to five places for pickling salt today. Isn't it funny that they have to label it "Canning and Pickling Salt" when all it is is, well, SALT? That's it, just NaCl, no iodine or anti-caking agents whatsoever. Just, SALT. But it's not sold in our closest health food store, Food Fantasies. That was the first place I checked. Half a dozen varieties of sea salt, no canning salt. And it's not sold everywhere that canning supplies are, or it would have been at Ace Hardware, Menards, and the regular (non-supercenter) Walmart I went to next. I finally found it at the new Supercenter Walmart, a good hour or so after leaving home. I was so happy to find it, I bought two boxes. I had been starting to fear that it was solely seasonal and I just wouldn't be able to get it until next summer! It IS sold at Humphrey's Market, which is a good clip from us but would be a good place to start shopping (and isn't open Sundays, and it was today I was making pickles).
So now, I have three pints of sliced cucumbers pickling, a quart of marinara sauce cooling on the counter, and a quart of acorn squash whistling away. And I'll be doing a lot more squash this Saturday. I've resolved to put by at least some of whatever is in season, no matter the season - currently, that's winter squash. A couple months from now, it will be orange, lemon, and grapefruit marmelade. I have no clue what's in season in spring. But I'll find out! And I'll can or dehydrate it! Whatever it is!
I did meet a new friend at Food Fantasies, though. Technically, we met at the first Food Not Lawns meeting back in April or March or whenever, but I don't think we'd seen each other since. Turns out I have time to can, but no tomatoes to speak of, she has tomatoes out her ears, but no time to can them. So I'm to call her tomorrow, and I'll be canning her tomatoes! With all the practice I'm getting, I'll be thinking nothing of it next year when (hopefully) I have my own bumper crop of things to can.
Life is good!