This section is from the book "Save It For Winter.", by Frederick Fry Rockwell. Also available from Amazon: Save It For Winter; Modern Methods Of Canning, Dehydrating, Preserving And Storing Vegetables And Fruit For Winter Use, With Comments On The Best ... For Saving, And When And How To Grow Them.
This includes such Vegetables as Swiss chard, kale, Chinese cabbage, beet tops. Marsh marigolds or "cowslips," and so forth. Any of these may be either canned or dehydrated. As this kind of Vegetable is usually the most scarce, and the most lacking in the winter diet, it is a good plan to save such surpluses as there may be through the summer by dehydrating small quantities, which can be done readily, and to make late plantings of whatever sorts are liked the best for canning.
While less economical to grow than onions, they can be kept by dehydrating the surplus of the summer crop. The regular garden crop saved in this way will answer for most families, as a little will go a long way.
This delicate vegetable is easily kept by canning; and where they may be obtained growing wild in large quantities it makes one of the cheapest as well as one of the most delicious winter dishes. No one should attempt to put them up, however, who has not had enough experience to be absolutely certain that only the non-poisonous kind are being used-better to go without them at all than to provide subject matter for an obituary in your local paper, where mushrooms are home grown they may be had fresh in winter as well as in summer.
This may be either canned or dehydrated, or simply dried. In either case it will make a very agreeable flavoring for a change in the winter's soups and stews. The pods should be taken while quite small. It is easily grown, and one planting will probably furnish all that is wanted for winter in addition to that used for summer.
These are usually kept by storing, but as they are much more difficult to keep than most of the root crops, they are a good product for dehydrating if they can be obtained cheaply when the market is apt to be over-supplied in the fall, or where they can be grown in the home garden although there may be no facilities for storing them. Those for either storing or dehydrating will be produced from the regular spring-sown crop. They are easily dried and lose little of their flavor in the process. The white varieties are easily grown but they are more difficult to harvest and to keep than the yellow and red sorts; the white varieties are the mildest in flavor. Dehydrating is therefore a very good way of keeping the tenderer and milder sorts. Onions are also used in many pickle mixtures or pickled by themselves.
This is one of the easiest vegetables of all to store for winter use, as they may merely be left in the ground. Part of the crop, however, should be taken up to be stored or dehydrated for use during mid-winter. To have parsnips of the best quality the seeds should not be planted nearly as early as is usually done.
These are easily either canned or dehydrated, provided enough of them can be got at one time in just the right condition. If surpluses from small plantings are depended on, there are likely to be many too old or too young. Special plantings should be made for winter use. It is best to plant these to mature just before the coming of hot weather; then if the crop fails another chance may be taken by planting early in the autumn in time to mature the crop before frost. As extreme earliness is no particular advantage, a large-podded, fine-flavored variety should be grown. In the dwarf varieties there are British wonder, Blue Bantam and Laxatoman; in the taller growing kinds, which need support of some kind, there are Gradus, Thomas Laxton, and Alderman. It takes more room and is more work to put up a given amount of peas than of many of the other garden products, but they keep readily and their delicious flavor makes it well worth while.