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Got Vegetables?

Whether you share them, sell them, or preserve your extra vegetables, you are ahead of the game and should be congratulating yourself on the success of your summer garden.

We have reached the end of summer and with that is the beginning of garden clean-up. Like most gardeners, you probably have an overabundance of tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, and zucchini. While some people share their vegetables with coworkers, families, or friends, others sell them at a farmers’ market or a roadside farm stand. Another way to handle your extra veggies is to store them to use later in the year. By canning, blanching, or freezing your harvest, you can supplement your meals all winter long. Here are some helpful tips, recipes, and creative ideas to make your vegetables last.

Do you have lots of zucchini? Try making loaves of zucchini bread, jars of zucchini relish, or zoodles [as a healthy substitute for pasta]. Blanching zucchini is a great way to preserve them for future meals. Check out these delicious recipes that call for zucchini.

Tomatoes are another garden item that many have an overabundance. Many people turn fresh tomatoes into sauces or salsa. However, did you know you can freeze tomatoes or dehydrate them? Check out this Mother Earth News website that gives you step-by-step instructions for freezing and thawing tomatoes.

Cucumbers are everywhere! Cucumbers are another garden vegetable that many of us have way more than we can eat before they spoil. We all know that cumbers are great in salads or by themselves. What else could you do with them? Check out the following article to find out about all the ways to use extra cucumbers.

As the garden season winds down, start planning what you will do with the surplus of your harvest. Whether you sell your vegetables to supplement your income, give them away, or can/blanch/freeze them, you have done a fantastic job of growing organic food, saving money at the grocery store, and continued to eat healthily. Pat yourself on the back for a job well done and enjoy those vegetables all winter long.

Do you have any great recipes to help preserve the overabundance of garden veggies? Please send them to me at creynolds@newdimensionsfcu.com.