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Step By Step Harvesting and “Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

I think that it is very important to discover all that mother nature offers from her “plant pantry”, especially that which is sustainable, with no danger of an over harvest. This is how I came to start juicing Queen Palm Berries. When I’m up at the family farm in NY, I forage for wild grapes, dandelions, wild currants, wild berries, pig’s ears, wild grape leaves, shaggy mane mushrooms (when I can still find them), locust blossoms, maple…..and the list goes on. However, when I made the move to Florida, where I live when work doesn’t have me traveling, I had to begin to learn what I could forage for here. So, I have begun my new quest of learning what I can find in the wild, plant wise, to eat.

“Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

When the queen palms that my parents have in their yard began to produce huge bunches of fruits, I began to wonder if there was anything that I could do with them, or if they were even safe to consume. With curiosity getting the best of me, I began some research and discovered that a good many of the palm fruits are edible, and are used for jellies, wine and cooking sauces. (As the squirrels absolutely love them, I figured that they were most likely safe, but I wanted to make sure.) When they turned orange and began falling off their bunches, they were ready to harvest. However, the entire bunch is not always ready to harvest all at once, so depending on how many queen palms you have and how they are ripening, it could take a few days to collect what you may need for a recipe.

In the case of our bunches, it so happened that the palms were being trimmed of their dead fronds, so I had the tree guy remove the bunches and leave them. Half of one bunch was orange and half was still green. I removed the ripened fruit. Although they are orange when ripe, I only harvested those which came off of the stems with a gentle little twist. As the rest ripened, I would harvest them, checking once or twice per day. However, in using both methods, I did find that it is best if you can let the fruits ripen on the tree and harvest as they fall. The seem to be a little fuller in size and a little sweeter.

With my initial question answered and my bucket filling up with ripened fruit, I began to find out exactly what I had to do with them to get them to the point of becoming an ingredient for some of the recipes that I had found. The reason being is that the berries of the queen palm are 98% pit which has a very fibrous layer over it, with a thin skin over that layer. These fibers, while not exactly edible, are chewable, and are sweet and terribly sticky. (No wonder the squirrels like them!) There seem to be a number of opinions about what the taste is, but I sometimes get a banana like taste when I chew on the fiber, with hints of other flavors that I haven’t quite yet identified.

I decided to try to make a jelly from the fruit that I had gathered, so my next question was how to extract any juices from these little guys, as there was nothing to really cook down, like you would a raspberry, and with most of the thing being nothing but pit, a juicer was totally out of the question. So, after a little more digging, I discovered how to extract the juice from these fruits, which would be the base for a few different recipes.

Harvesting and “Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

“Juicing” the Palm Fruits

To begin with, I rinsed the berries well (I did this outdoors using the hose, but you can do this indoors too) and let them drain. This is basically to remove any dirt and debris from the berries, especially those that I had harvested before the trees were pruned, as the ripened berries fell to the ground.

Harvesting and “Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

Harvesting and “Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

Next, I placed the fruits into a large pot, and cover with water, covering 1” over the top of the fruits. I actually split my harvest into 2 pots for this process. It was just easier than working with a pot filled to the brim.

Harvesting and “Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

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I then placed the pot of fruit, uncovered, on the stove until it came to a boil. (This can take a while.) When the pot finally began boiling, I lowered the heat to medium and still leaving uncovered, allowed it to simmer for about 1 hour. (Although I didn’t experience sticking, I did occasionally stir the fruit.) After simmering, remove from heat and let sit 1 hour to cool.

Harvesting and “Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

Harvesting and “Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

When the pot of fruit has cooled for the hour (you should be able to handle it by this time without burning your hands (although the fruit still may be warm or even on the hottish side), begin to put a handful of fruit at a time into a jelly bag and squeeze.

Harvesting and “Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

Harvesting and “Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

Depending on how large the seed of the fruit is, you may get very little of anything or you may get varying amounts of additional liquid. You may squeeze the fruits into the pot the fruits are already in or you may squeeze into a new bowl. Either way, you will be straining the liquid again when you are through, so it doesn’t really matter. The fruits may be discarded after they have been squeezed.

Harvesting and “Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

Harvesting and “Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

Once you have your thoroughly strained liquid, you may now use it for your recipes or freeze it. Freezing is simple and well cleaned, plastic, half gallon milk jugs work well. Be sure to leave open space at the top of the container to allow for expansion. Thaw and use when you are ready!

Harvesting and “Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

Harvesting and “Juicing” Queen Palm Berries

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Self Sufficiency

NYC Adds Nearly 4,000 People Who Never Tested Positive To Coronavirus Death Tolls

New York City added nearly 4,000 people who never tested positive for the coronavirus to its death toll Tuesday, bringing coronavirus-related deaths in the city to around 10,000 people.

The city decided to add 3,700 people to its death tolls, who they “presumed” to have died from the virus, according to a report from The New York Times. The additions increased the death toll in the U.S. by 17%, according to the Times report, and included people who were suffering from symptoms of the virus, such as intense coughing and a fever.

The report stated that Democratic New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio decided over the weekend to change the way the city is counting deaths.

“In the heat of battle, our primary focus has been on saving lives,” de Blasio press secretary Freddi Goldstein told the Times.“As soon as the issue was raised, the mayor immediately moved to release the data.”

The post New York City added nearly 4,000 people who never tested positive for the coronavirus to its death toll appeared first on Daily Caller

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Self Sufficiency

How To Make Lacto-Fermented Sauerkraut In A Mason Jar

The thing about homesteading is you get to create your own ingredient right from scratch! Cheese, yogurt, butter and now sauerkraut, a delightfully sour and crunchy ingredient you can use on your meals — or consume by itself — while on a homestead, or while facing this health crisis!

This homemade sauerkraut is a great meal because it has a long shelf life. You can either make plain sauerkraut or mix it with herbs and spices. In this tutorial let us make Lacto-fermented sauerkraut that preserves all the good probiotics in a jar, good for your guts.

So how to make sauerkraut in a mason jar?

RELATED: How To Make Buttermilk On Your Homestead

Delicious Sauerkraut Recipe Every Homesteader Should Know

Why Make Sauerkraut?

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Not only does sauerkraut spoil a long time, but it is also a meal in itself, and it is also easy to make! You don’t need to be an expert cook, all you need to do is follow these simple steps.

So let us get started. Here are the steps in making sauerkraut in a mason jar.

Ingredients:

  • 1 head of cabbage or 2 1/2 lbs cabbage
  • 1 tablespoon of salt

Tools Needed:

  • knife
  • bowl
  • mason jar
  • smaller jar
  • rubber band

Step 1: Wash & Clean the Tools & Ingredients



Wash all the equipment and utensils you need. Wash your hands too.

You don’t want to mix your sauerkraut with bad bacteria, anything that is going to make you sick.

Next, remove the faded leaves from your cabbage. Cut off the roots and the parts that don’t seem fresh.

Step 2: Cut the Cabbage Into Quarters & Slice Into Strips



Cut your cabbage into quarters and remove the core. Then, slice it into strips.

Step 3: Place in a Bowl & Sprinkle With Salt



Put the stripped cabbage into a bowl. Sprinkle the cabbage with 1 tablespoon of salt.

TIP: Use canning salt or sea salt. Iodized salt will make it taste different and may not ferment the cabbage.

RELATED: Homemade Yogurt Recipe

Step 4: Massage the Cabbage



Massage the cabbage for five minutes or more to get the juice out.

TIP: You’ll know it’s ready when you see a bit of juice at the bottom of the bowl and will look similar to coleslaw.

Step 5: Press Cabbage Into the Mason Jar



Add the cabbage to the mason jar gradually. Press it in hard to allow the juice to come out. Do this every time you add about a handful of cabbage.

IMPORTANT: Food should be covered by the liquid to promote fermentation. Add any excess liquid from the bowl to the jar.

Step 6: Press a Smaller Jar Into the Mason Jar



You want to squeeze every ounce of that juice from the cabbage. To do this place the mason jar in a bowl and get a smaller jar.

Fill it with water or marble to make it heavy. Press it into the bigger mason jar. Allow any juices to rise to the surface.

Step 7: Cover the Jars With Cloth & Tie With Rubber Band



Leave the small jar on. To keep your jars clean from annoying insects and irritating debris, cover your jars with a clean cloth. Then, use a rubber band to tie the cloth and the jars together, putting them in place.

Step 8: Set Aside & Check Daily

Set it aside in a cool dry place, away from direct sunlight. Check the water level daily. It should always be above the cabbage.

Step 9: Taste Your Sauerkraut & Keep at Cool Temperatures

Homemade Sauerkraut Cumin Juniper | How To Make Lacto-Fermented Sauerkraut In A Mason Jar

After about five days, you can taste your sauerkraut. If the taste is to your liking, tightly cover it with the lid and store in the fridge or cellar.

NOTE: If after five days it’s still not your desired taste, leave it for a few more days. This will allow the fermentation process to continue.

You can now enjoy your sauerkraut in a mason jar. Enjoy its goodness! You can use it as a side dish or mix it with your favorite sandwich.

Things to Remember in Making Sauerkraut

  • Store away from direct sunlight and drafts.
  • Colder weather will make the process longer. Spring is the best time to make them since the warmth helps activate the fermentation.
  • Always make sure that the cabbage is below the water level during the entire fermentation process.
  • If the water level decreases during the fermentation process, you can make a brine and add it.

Let us watch this video from Kristina Seleshanko on how to make delicious Lacto-fermented sauerkraut in a mason jar!

So there you have it! Making Lacto-fermented sauerkraut in a mason jar is as easy as slicing the cabbage into strips. Remember that as long it remains unopened, your sauerkraut can last for months. Best of all, you can partner this sauerkraut in many recipes.

What do you think of this homemade recipe? Share your best sauerkraut recipe in the comments section below!

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Self Sufficiency

9 SPRING VEGETABLES FOR YOUR GARDEN

Having plants in the house will bring peace to people. Having a little garden with vegetables is even better! You can grow these vegetables in your backyard garden easily as well!

RELATED: Microgreens Growing Guide

In this article:

  1. Tomato
  2. Eggplant
  3. Beet
  4. Spinach
  5. Pea
  6. Carrot
  7. Radish
  8. Cauliflower
  9. Asparagus

Growing veggies in your garden will give you an opportunity to understand what you eat and value it more. Early spring is when most vegetables are being planted. Keep reading to learn about 9 spring vegetables that anyone can grow in their garden!

Tomato

Tomato is the most popular garden vegetable in the States! There are different varieties to choose from. Tomatoes need to be planted in early spring because they won’t survive a frost.

Because tomatoes are consumed daily, try adding them to your garden! They’re not difficult to grow either.

Eggplant

Eggplants are known to have low-calorie, vitamins, minerals, and nutrients. Plus, they are delicious! So why not plant them in your garden?

Eggplants shouldn’t be planted too early because they won’t be able to survive a frost. So you could consult an expert in your area before you plant your eggplants.

Beets

Beets are known to be a superfood for its various health benefits. They’re easier to grow in the garden, usually around late March or early April.

If the weather is always cool, beets will keep getting bigger and bigger. Once the weather starts to warm up, you’ll need to harvest them, or they’ll go to waste.

Spinach

Spinach is a delicious early spring veggie, and it’s also very beneficial for health. And it’s not difficult to grow spinach in your garden!

Spinach needs cold weather to grow. Getting spinach to grow is easy, but keeping it growing will require some extra care.

Pea

Peas are usually planted in late April. Peas will die in freezing temperatures, but they also won’t survive the heat either. So make sure you plant your peas in early spring.

Peas are widely used in many different ways, and there are different types of peas. The soil you’ll be planting your peas should be suitable for them, so make sure you ask while buying seeds.

Carrot

There are different types of carrots, but regardless of their size and color, it’s a fact that carrots are both delicious and rich in vitamins.

They’re root vegetables, so with proper sun and watering, they can be picked up as baby carrots as well.

Radish

A radish is an excellent option for beginners because it doesn’t require too much care. Radish is easy to harvest.

Radish grows fast, so it’s better to keep an eye on it after a few weeks. Radish usually is grown pest-free, but there’s always the chance of unwanted guests, so watch out for worms. Radish can be eaten raw or can be added to garnish recipes.

Cauliflower

Cauliflower isn’t the easiest vegetable to grow at home, but it is very popular.

Cauliflower grows better in colder weather, so before you plant it, consider the climate of your garden. Cauliflower can be eaten raw or cooked, and it is known to be very beneficial for health.

Asparagus

Freshly picked, tender asparagus is very delicious!

Asparagus plants get more productive with each harvest, and mature asparagus harvest can last for months! Make sure you plant them at the correct time, or else they might go to waste.

All the vegetables listed above are great for your healthy diet, and it’s fun to watch them grow. So don’t miss out on the opportunity to grow your own veggies and eat healthy this spring!

So tell us which veggies will you be growing this spring? Tell us in the comments section!

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