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Dealing with a glut - and making the best of inexpensive seasonal food

Posted on Saturday 1 September 2018

By Diana Earnshaw, Volunteer Contributor

PreservingMany of us grow some fruit and veg - whether it’s a few salad items on a windowsill or in a patio-tub or a more comprehensive array in our gardens/allotments. These sometimes give us a glut to deal with. Last year the weather conditions for my plum tree must have been perfect. I couldn’t keep up! I gave them away, froze some, made plum sauce and chutney – even made plum vodka! This year – not a single plum. That’s often the way isn’t it?

Some fruit/veg are known to be very productive. Courgettes and apples for example. Friends keep giving me courgettes, which is great as I haven’t grown any this year, but they are struggling with the sheer quantity from just a couple of plants.

I think we need to be prepared at this time! Make sure vinegar, sugar, onions, garlic, spices are ready and waiting and start collecting jars/sauce bottles/Kilner jars over the previous months (or cadge them from friends). 

Giving your produce away is a lovely thing to do. I didn’t expect it but when I gave away the plums last year, I was amazed that I was given their surplus – runner beans, a jar of jam, broad beans and apples. Fabulous!

Freezing (prepare and open freeze before putting in boxes and bags) and fermenting will keep most of the vitamins and minerals intact. Bottling is an old fashioned way to preserve fruit, but it still has merits. If you fancy having a go, Allrecipes UK have a useful article. Making wine from your fruits can also be very satisfying and The Fruit Expert has guidance. 

Here are a few recipes to use up that glut!


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