Tuesday, August 21, 2012


“But each day the LORD pours his unfailing love upon me, and through each night I sing his songs, praying to God who gives me life.” Psalm 42:8 NLT

Yesterday I finished a marathon 2-day canning project – homemade Relish!
My Mother-in-law taught me how to make her recipe many years ago and it is so much better than the commercially made product. It’s a combination of
  • 20 pounds of cucumbers
  • five pounds each of peppers (red and green), onions, cabbage and green tomatoes
  • 2 Tbsp. each of mustard and celery seeds
  • 3-4 Tbsp of turmeric
  • 1-2 cups of sugar (to taste) sugar
  • 1 quart each of vinegar and water.
On day one, the veggies are ground up and salted, then left to stand overnight. The next day the excess water is squeezed off the veggies until they are almost dry before cooking them in the fresh water and vinegar-spice mixture.

I have changed things up over the years. For example, I don’t stand over a hot stove and cook the mixture for one and a half hours. After I burned a batch a few years ago, I decided to let my crock pots do the cooking! The crock pots keep the mixture moist and I only have to stir things up occassionally while they cook for 4-5 hours on high. Sure it takes a bit longer, but I’m free to do other chores while the pots do all the work. LOL!

This year’s batch was about 2/3 the size of the recipe, but I ended up with 14 pints. I thought it would be enough to last for 2 years for my husband and I, but when I told my daughter about the relish, she immediately said, “I gotta have me some of that!” Oh well… I guess I can always make more next year.

Relish is a condiment – not something people usually eat by itself, but something they use to help enhance the flavor of other foods. I love the thought that God can make me into a condiment for his use. He takes all the trials and hurts that I’ve gone through and adds lots of learning experiences, interactions with others and a little heat to make me into a person who will add just the right touch to help to bring out the best in others.

It may be a marathon process, but I suppose God loves the process just as much as he loves seeing the finished product all ready to enjoy – just like I enjoy making and seeing my relish all canned on the counter!

Thank you Lord, for my relish and for preparing me to spice up the lives of others. Amen!

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