Monday and Tuesday were spent catching up on house hold chores, plying some yarn and making another batch of peach salsa. I got the laundry caught up and harvested a head of cabbage from the garden, which brings me to this week’s first recipe.

Peachy Creamy Coleslaw

Finely slice cabbage. I used about a half head like you get at the store which was ¼ head of my big flat dutch cabbage. I then grated a couple carrots to this I added a dressing from Dr. Neal Barnard’s book. If you do not have this book I highly recommend getting it. The recipes are so good and it helps you learn a whole new way of cooking. I will share a picture of the cover and recipe to help you find the book online to order.

Stir the Mango Hemp dressing into your cabbage and carrots and enjoy a tangy sweet coleslaw similar to my mom’s creamy coleslaw. We had it with some garden fresh tomatoes and it was oh so good. This weekend at our family reunion I am going to try it on Sweet Potato Bean Burgers. The recipe is in my April 3rd blog on chroniclesofthewadehomestead.com. I know with a big slice of ripe tomato it will be so good.

I was excited for Wednesday to get here. A childhood friend has a little coffee house in Columbia City. Her deceased mother and my mom were best friends’ grade school through adult hood.  I met my mom, another of her classmates and daughter, my sister and the owner of Brew’ha in Columbia City for lunch. Conversation was good and the meal and service was wonderful. Hearing old stories and catching up on their lives was fun.  After lunch my sister and the owner went back to work. My mom and her friend and daughter all came out to see the farm. Mom has not been to the farm for many years and I loved her reactions to what I have gotten done so far, fixing things up here. It was a really fun day.

This week we got 3+ inches of rain. Wednesday night I checked the peaches to discover a mold that was quickly destroying my peach crop. I picked all the peaches and by 2AM on Thursday I had washed the mold off the better ones with vinegar and made peach syrup trying to make jam out of the ones that needed to be worked up right away or lose them.

Thursday morning I was up 4 or 5 hours after I laid my head on the pillow. I had a friend coming to glean from some wood we have in the grainery. We ended up calling my neighbor and getting some peaches for her to put up and a few for me and my great niece to make jam for her family. When my friend left it was time to go pick up my energetic great niece to do some cooking for Duane’s side of the family’s, family reunion. We made Duane’s Grandma Mildred’s Molasses cookies and peach jam. I decided not to make Mildred’s homemade bread when I saw the recipe calls for 30 cups of flour.  It was a fun day spent with my great niece. I am amazed at the beautiful young lady she is becoming. What a blessing it is to make new memories with the next generation.

Low Sugar Peach Jam

4 cups crushed or pureed peaches

4Tablespoons Ball Real Fruit Lower no Sugar Pectin

40 drops stevia

4 Tablespoons lemon juice

2 Tablespoons maple syrup

Have your jars and lids ready to fill with hot liquid. I like to put my clean jars in the oven on 350 degrees to heat them up, I put on a boiling water bath and put my lids on to boil while making the jam. It makes 4 to 6 half pints or 2 to 3 pints. Put peaches in a sauce pan and sprinkle then stir pectin in a little at a time until all the pectin is well incorporated. Then stir in other ingredients. Put on the stove on medium heat and cook stirring until it is bubbling. Cook another 2 to 3 minutes while stirring. Turn off heat and skim any foam off and put in a bowl to enjoy first. Then put the remaining jam in your jars using your jar funnel wipe the lip of the jar to make sure it is clean, place your lids on the jar fasten the rings on and put in your boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and let set in the hot water another 5 minutes before removing to cool. Remove to cool. I set mine on a towel on the counter for 12 to 24 hours before removing the rings and washing each jar to put in the root cellar. Jams, Jellies and Pickles make great Christmas gifts.

For a different twist I made a batch where I pureed with the peaches 6 jalapenos and added a ½ teaspoon of red pepper. We enjoyed this on buckwheat pancakes and I may have to take some peaches out of the freezer and make more. It was delicious with just a little bite to it. I taste tested and kept adding jalapinos until I got our desired spice level. Jalapenos can vary a lot in spiciness so I would highly recommend you do the same if you decide to add spice to the jam.  

On Friday I made cucumber salad, peachy creamy slaw, some spicy peach jam and vegan brownies for the reunion. I then mowed our 5 plus acres and was able to finish as Duane arrived home from work.  I am so thankful for our zero turn mower and actually enjoy mowing. As I buzz around the yard I can see how all my fruit trees are doing and enjoy the beauty we are surrounded by.  When mowing I discovered my fall raspberries are blooming and setting on fruit and some pears that need picked before the deer get them all. The apple trees are still loaded with fruit and I am hoping for enough to get cider pressed this year. I also discovered a big pumpkin in the pumpkin patch. I am looking forward to a fall harvest.

Saturday was a busy day, we helped with the wiring in my nieces house she is fixing up. We came home,  put some buffalo cauliflower in the crock pot and sliced tomatoes for the reunion and then headed to the funeral of a dear friend of mine. Seeing all her family and friends gather and share her impact on their lives, spoke volumes about her faith and love. It was a beautiful testament of a life well lived. Keep her family and friends in your prayers as they figure out how to do life without her.

Today was our family reunion. We went to Indiana Dunes. Duane and I went a bit early. We didn’t take our swim suits but we did walk down into the water. Brrrrrrr! Was that water cold. Seeing everyone was so good. I am so blessed to be in the family I am in. God knew what he was doing when he brought Duane into my life. At one point a big water fight broke out with the teens. I thought I was safe hanging out with my grandson JD whom everyone respects his dislike of getting water on his shirt. At some point several adults got into the fight and cups of water and ice were being thrown everywhere. I thought it was safe to get up and walk across the pavilion when my brother in law came up behind me and poured a bottle of water down the back of my shirt. JD really laughed when he got me. There have been other times we have had water fights that I have teased him and dropped a couple drops of water down the back of his shirt. He thought it was great that someone got me. I love when he laughs like that. It was good to catch up with everyone and see where life is taking them.

To sum up my week I would have to say that I loved the old memories and making new ones with friends and family. Without going into any details I would have to say the overall lesson resounding in my heart this week from the Lord would be Galatians 6:9 where it talks about not becoming weary in doing good and that we will reap a harvest if we don’t give up. This week I have had situation after situation where I was made aware that this is true. Not so much in material gains, but in answered prayer after answered prayer. God is good and we are blessed here on the Wade Homestead.