Friday, January 23, 2009

Shopping the January Cellar

This morning the clouds were hanging low - I could see across the valley, but not the hillsides above. The rain had stopped, but everything was wet and the air had a misty feel to it. I got a fire going in the stove, and mended a couple of socks. By mid-morning I just had to get outside. I took the dog, and we walked a mile up the canyon, just to see if the rain had washed out the dirt road. On my way up, I met a neighbor out with her dog coming down, and we stopped to visit a while. This kind of weather is a bit rare around here - we agreed we both just had to be out in it.

This afternoon, I had some errands to run, and the rain started up again. We don't get pounding-down rain, just spitty-drizzle. We've gotten maybe a quarter-inch in the past 24 hours. But by the time I got home, there was enough run-off that I had to make some little ditches in the sand to channel water away from the front door. Just before dark, I went out for the eggs (three, today), and then "shopping" in the cellar. I couldn't believe how heavy the upper door was, soaking wet. Since the rain is supposed to change to snow by Sunday, I brought up enough produce for the week. Clockwise, from bottom left: a quart of beer (have I ever mentioned that we make our own beer, plus hard cider when we have a bumper crop of apples or pears?), the last of the red Burgermeister onions, plus some yellow Copra onions, Russet potatoes, apples (gleaned from an old tree in the oldest part of town), Yukon Gold potatoes, tomatoes (Early Girls, picked green last fall - our summers are hot and but short; the tomatoes are a bit watery inside and their skins starting to shrivel; they can't compare to those fresh off the vine in August, but certainly beat out the hard baseballs in the supermarket now), and some Kuroda carrots. It was a good night to make pot of stew.

6 comments:

frogtailrae said...

That basket of produce looks and sounds delicious! Stew and a nice beer... oh yeah!

Kate@LivingTheFrugalLife said...

Jealous, jealous, jealous. I have root cellar envy. It helps little that you say the tomatoes don't compare to summer fresh. But not too much.

lazy susie said...

Do you have any tips on storing veggies in a root cellar? Starting with making one.

Your veggies look great.

Sadge said...

Oh boy, Lazy Susie - that's a question worthy of a whole week's worth of posts, at least. I'll try to get an overview and some tips of what we do put together and online sometime soon. But I'd really recommend you find a copy of "Root Cellaring" by Mike & Nancy Bubel (Rodale Press; check your local Borders or Amazon.com). It covers everything - from building ideas, inside or out, big or small; to recommending the best storage varieties to grow; to specific storage requirements of all different kinds of produce.

Nancy M. said...

I'll bet it's so awesome to just be able to shop in your own cellar!

onemotherslove said...

I enjoyed your chicken post and seeing your stored veggies. I wonder how ours will store next year without a cellar? : \ And I wonder how you make the beer.