We worked and waited all year and now it’s here — harvest — 15 Comments

  1. No, not wonderful! :) The battery ignition stove is sounding better and better. We are thinking that we could use rechargeable batteries, and then find some off-grid way to recharge them. At the moment, we are not even close to being off-grid, and we have much to learn about that way of life.

  2. All,

    I had a new stove when we lived in New Mexico that I didn’t take with us when we moved as the oven, which had electronic ignition wouldn’t work in a power outage. Instead of a flame that raised and lowered as you turned the oven dial, the flame went off and on to control temperature. You could light it manually but it wouldn’t stay on. Wonderful???!!!

  3. I think, though I am not positive, that the appliance store people are right about some of the gas ovens these days. I believe they have an electronic type control that won’t allow gas to pass if there is no electricity. I’m sure this is a $20-$50 or more part, compared to the $5 thermocouple the old stoves used for safety. A decent handywoman or handyman could replace the thermocouple fairly easily every 3-5 years when it gave up, and all the hardware stores had the part in stock. Progress.

  4. Thanks Jackie, arm2008, and Sharon. I’m glad to know that one can light an electronic ignition oven with a match. Our appliance store made it sound like it was impossible to light the oven when the electricity was off. They did say that it was still possible to light the stovetop in a power outage, but the newer models coming out will be just like the oven, impossible to light.

    Yesterday we found out that a local Old Order Mennonite store has battery ignition stoves for a reasonable price: $550 for the standard and $650 for the deluxe model. We are planning to visit the store soon.

  5. My gas stove has the electronic ignition but if I don’t have the power on I just turn on the gas and light as if it had no pilot. For the oven, I just turn on the oven and get down on my knees and put a long lighter in to the back of the oven and light. It is more and more difficult to light but only because it is harder to get back up.

  6. Most electronic ignition gas stove tops you can light with a match, just turn the knob until gas is flowing and fire away. Some of the newer ovens are much more difficult or impossible to light if the electicity is off. That is a problem, in my book.

  7. Lori,

    I’m tickled to hear your experience with the tomatoes! My tomatoes are just coming in now so I can’t wait to use it for my sauce. It’ll be even faster than using the oven to cook down the puree and we’ll end up with tomato broth too. Some folks are worried when their tomato “juice” ends up looking like water. But it is real good for using as a soup base or instead of using water with a roast or other meat.

  8. Rhona and Brad,

    I lay our hazelnuts out in a single layer to completely dry them. Then they are husked and cleaned of chaff by pouring them into a container out in the wind. The chaff blows away and the nuts stay.
    To use/store them, crack the nuts (they have a thin shell) then lay on a single layer on a cookie sheet in your oven at about 200 degrees. Toast for about 20 minutes, stirring once in awhile so they don’t get scorched. You can then can them as you would walnut meats or just use in baking. If you want to eat them, either just eat the plain toasted nuts or coat very lightly with vegetable oil and sprinkle with salt before you toast them. Pretty darned good. Which is why the squirrels sure try to beat us to them every year.

  9. Cindy,

    You can check your crabapples by cutting one in half from time to time. When the flesh is white, not greenish and the seeds are brown, not white, they’re ripe. You’ll LOVE your juicer! Now I have my Mehu Liisa I can’t figure out how I ever got along without one!

  10. Lisa,

    Some days I don’t get so much done! But I try. My gas stove is a cheaper model I bought new nine years ago. It has a standing pilot; couldn’t use one with electronic ignition. Ask at your gas company and see if they have one with a pilot or else a battery powered ignition, which some do. It’s getting harder to find a stove to use off grid or during power outages!

  11. Hi Jackie,
    Because of your blog we bought a steam juicer. I used it last weekend to do some Roma tomatoes. It made the sauce so thick all I had to do was add the spices and such for my pizza sauce. I didn’t have to cook it down at all. And as a bonus 14 quarts of tomato broth for my soups this winter. Thanks for all you teach us. It is a joy to read your blog and articles in Backwoods Home.

  12. Jackie,

    We have hazelnuts but don’t know how process/keep them. Have looked in both your books but can’t seem to find any information.

    Help! Thanks so much for your blog have learned so much

  13. How do you know when the crab apples are ready to pick? Mine are bright red and good size this year. Of course, a good crop. I have plums too for the first time. I’m waiting for them to soften up! I ordered a juicer too. I have lots of grapes and think that will save time and I’ll get more juice.
    Thanks for all you share!

  14. I love reading all you accomplish in one day. It makes me want to get out there and work even harder. Thanks for the inspiration.

    We are feasting on the Bill Bean tomatoes, and they are a hit with my family. My husband likes them because it only takes one slice to make a great sandwich; no more struggling to keep all the little slices between the two pieces of bread. They have fantastic flavor, too.

    If you ever get a chance, I’d like to know more about your gas stove. Does it have electronic ignition? It seems that all the new stoves do nowadays, and I want one that I can use a match to start in case of a power outage. I’m just curious about yours and what you all do.

  15. I am sooo jealous of your hazelnuts! Mine have not yet started producing. The crabapple juice looks so beautiful. I bet it is delicious.