Hot Giardiniera

1/2 lb. carrots, peeled and sliced to 1/8-inch thickness
1/2 lb. celery, sliced into 1/4-inch thickness
2 red bell peppers, medium dice
1/2 lb. cauliflower florets, about 3/4-inch in size
1/2 lb. green olives, pitted and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1 lb. hot peppers of your choice (I did half jalapeño and half serrano)
1 cup pickling salt
4 quarts water
2 cups white vinegar
2 tbsps pickling spice (purchase or easily make your own)
1 1/2 cup sugar

Mandarin Oranges

1. Clean your jars, rings and lids. A dishwasher works great for this. I usually put them in a pot of boiling water and then place them in the oven on the lowest temperature while I prepare my fruit.
2. Peel your mandarins. Remove as much of the white pith as possible. These little Kishu Mandarins took no work at all to remove the pith, but their smaller than golf ball size did involve a lot of peeling.

Grandma's Dill Pickles


  • 11 cups water
  • 5 cups white vinegar
  • 1 cup canning salt
  • 12 pounds pickling cucumbers, quartered or halved lengthwise
  • 9 dill sprigs or heads
  • 18 garlic cloves
  • 18 dried hot chilies


In a stockpot, bring water, vinegar and salt to a boil; boil 10 minutes. Pack cucumbers into nine hot quart jars within 1/2 in. of top. Place one dill head, two garlic cloves and two peppers in each jar.

Peach Salsa

For the Salsa
  • about 10 to 12 large peaches
  • Juice from two limes or ½ cup 5% vinegar
  • ½ cup honey
  • 1 large and 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped (use more if you like hot and spicy)
  • 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 4 tablespoons of cilantro, chopped

Overnight Cheesy Breakfast Casserole

4 cups cubes left over biscuits (I used Grand's Homestyle Butter Tastin' Biscuits)*
1 pound sage breakfast sausage, cooked
2 cups cubed ham
½ red bell pepper, chopped
1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
12 large eggs
2 cups milk
1 teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon kosher salt
8 ounces mild cheddar, shredded
butter to grease the baking dish
chopped scallions to garnish

Butter a 9x13 or similar size baking pan. 

Applesauce Fruit Blends

To prepare for canning, I heat 5 pint/500 ml mason jars in boiling water and left them in the hot water until ready to be filled. The sealing discs and ring bands were also warmed in a small pot of boiling water and left in the hot water until ready to use.

Peaches in Vanilla Syrup

Makes about 10 pint jars or 4 quart jars

1 teaspoon ascorbic acid mix, or 1 tablespoon lemon juice or vinegar
8 pounds peaches, freestone preferably because your life will be easier : )
4 cups sugar (This seemed like a lot to me, so I cut it down to 3 cups)
2 vanilla beans, split, each piece cut into inch-size pieces


Prepare the peaches…
Fill a large bowl with cold water and stir in the ascorbic acid mix/lemon/vinegar.