Preserving the multitude of summer’s bounty

{a post by Mel}

Boy, have I gotten myself in over my head!

It’s normal for me to do a ton of canning and this year is no exception. However, I took a bunch of leftover produce from a local farmer’s CSA to preserve, and as a part of those leftovers I got approximately 50 pounds of jalapeños!

Yes, you read that right.

Jalapeñosphoto credit – quazeck

I don’t even like jalapenos and now I am spending HOURS canning and preserving them. I was very nervous as to what I was going to with them all, but thanks to some friends and Google I came up with a bunch of ideas!

My first task was Cowboy Candy, which a friend suggested. I thought it would make great gifts for some of my family members who love hot foods, and I am anxious to see how they turn out. I’ve been told it is best to wait two weeks to try it, so we shall see what my family thinks.

My second recipe was Hot Pepper Jam which I found the idea for online and the directions were right in the package of jam pectin I purchased. (I had a couple different brands and both of them had recipes) I did taste this and it was really good! My husband reminded me that back when we were dating (before I went dairy free) we purchased hot pepper jam at the store and mixed it with cream cheese to make a dip for our crackers. It was SO yummy!

cowboy candy

I have other plans for the other half of my jalapenos, which include drying and grinding some into powder and pickling some of the others.

In addition to the jalapenos I got lots of other produce I am preserving as well. I am trying to take advantage of all the opportunities to store food for winter and have had good luck using Google searches to come up with new recipes. So if you are overwhelmed with a particular veggie or have a new veggie you don’t know what to do with don’t be afraid to Google or ask your
friends for recipes.

I have had so much fun learning new recipes, trying new foods, and filling up my pantry with lots of goodies for the winter!

What are you currently preserving? And what have you done with a multitude of jalapenos?

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About donielle

Donielle is a natural momma of two, lover of real foods, and owner and editor of Grand Rapids Natural Living and Naturally Knocked Up. You can usually find her in the kitchen whipping up some nourishing foods, cuddled on the couch reading books to the littles, avoiding the laundry and Mt. Saint Dishes, or tapping away on the laptop. Her husband puts up with her sometimes crazy "hippie" ways, but loves her regardless. Welcome to my home away from home.


  1. Wow! The candied peppers are something I’ve never heard of. Those look like fun!

    I had an abundance of peppers from my garden (but not quite 50 pounds at once! 😉 ) and so far I’ve made pickled pepper slices, pepper jelly (with banana peppers), and I’ve frozen some. Oh, and I’ve made a lot of salsa. I want to make another batch or two of salsa, and now I want to try some Cowboy Candy too. 🙂

  2. I think I might have to try some cowboy candy too! I only planted about 8 pepper plants and they’ve gone crazy this year! Two years ago I barely had any at all and now I have an entire drawer of my fridge full of just peppers. 🙂

    How did you make your pickled pepper slices? I have a bucket full of yellow peppers that i need to do something with……


    I sliced mine though. But that’s the basic pickling brine (2 cups each vinegar, water, 2 T. salt).

  4. Oh, and I used apple cider vinegar. It has the same acidity, just a little different flavor.

  5. thanks! I’ll definitely be trying it since I’m now getting a bunch from family too. 😉

  6. I made up 3 pints of candied peppers with my last 3 pounds of jalepenos. The pepper plants are pulled so NO MORE JALEPENOS to deal with! LOL Now to figure out what to do with my banana pepepers.