Saturday, October 11, 2014

Bushel, bushel, bushed!

A good friend of mine came by this weekend to learn how to can apples.  This friend is a former student of mine, who is now an amazing and accomplished mathematician in her own right.  We serve on a national committee or two together, and we occasionally even swap math ideas (although we're in very different fields).

Well, my friend is now such a well-established math professor that there's not much left for me to teach her, besides how to can applesauce, so that's what we did.

I get my apples locally; my running buddy June picks them up during her tours of the Amish farms in our county.   I like getting apples both local and cheap -- only 50¢ per pound!   Win all around!

I told June that I wanted two bushels of apples.  "Are you sure?" she asked back.  I remembered she'd asked the same thing when I'd ordered apples a year before, and I'd said yes last year (and been happy for all the apples she brought.  So there).  So I said yes again.

And then June delivered the apples.

I guess I hadn't ordered . . . two bushels . . .  last year.

Because two bushels is really a boatload of apples.

In fact, I looked it up on-line afterward, and a bushel is 48 pounds of apples.  So (using my math brain to compute) I now realized I ordered 96 pounds of apples.  Yeah.

So we canned.  We canned and we canned.  Then I made a giant batch of apple crisp.

I'm out of canning jars.  I'm out of energy, too.

 And I still have a more than a bushel of apples left.


  1. Yum! Hope the boys are very good at making apple pie...(and crisp, and fritters, and cake...). You can add apples to savory dishes too -- they marry well with pork and poultry, so fried apple slices with turkey sausage...

    After that, Christmas presents?

    1. Yeah, we're pulling out all our favorite recipes. But the freezer is already nearly full, which nixes cooking in advance, and I've run out of canning jars, which makes x-mas gifts . . . well, okay, I can go and buy more canning jars of course.

      I just gave away 1/3 of the apples to my friends who are getting ready to start can. And we're inviting students over for dinner. This is a good problem to have, really.

      Yum, indeed!

  2. I'm so impressed! A maths prof plus canning skills! Really, how many people can claim both those skills?

    1. Actually, as I discovered the first time I actually did it, canning is super easy. All you do is boil the jars in water. Ta da! It's the volume that makes canning tough -- cooking a dinner for 40 people is pretty tricky, and that's essentially what I do when I can up a dozen or so jars of apples.

      But maybe I shouldn't say canning is easy. It's flattering that I've managed to impress you!