Mike Jay wrote:That's too funny. I was going to mention Larisa's design in my post but I thought it may be TMI. I just attended her presentations at the MREA energy fair and I think that design has a lot to offer (for our climate). Apparently she is putting up a years worth of food each year and drying a lot of it.
I have not tried drying green beans but I'll give it a shot this year. I've heard you can thread a string through them and hang them to dry. I have no idea what the reconstituted texture would be.
Regarding the frozen green beans... I think the way you cook them impacts how they feel. We let the beans defrost on the counter and then put them in a steamer on the stove. When they just turn shiny green, they're done.
As for energy intensiveness of canning, I have an idea for you if you're in the country. Make a cinder block and steel plate cooker. I use mine for maple syrup in the spring as well (without the steel plate). I don't have a photo at the moment but when I build my next one I'll take some pics. Basically you make a 3-4 block high unit that is about 2' wide by 5' long. Open on the front and closed in on the other three sides. At the back you need to get creative to make a chimney. Put a 6' chimney of single wall (cheap) stove pipe. Put a 1/4" thick steel plate on top of the blocks and light a fire underneath. On my old rig I could run two canners, two kettles and a few small pots all at the same time. Wood is the input so no fossil fuel use. I'm sorry I don't have a pic but if you do a google image search for "cinder block arch" you'll see what I mean.
Resprouting looks interesting. We haven't tried it but it looks like it would give you some good green stuff in the winter.
Larisa Walk wrote:We are off-grid solar but mostly use electric for canning/cooking in the summer with LP gas cooktop as a backup.