The Preservationists Vs. the Artisans

Sometimes the New York Times annoys me.

Yesterday—in case you missed it—the Dining and Wine section featured a “D.I.Y. Cooking Handbook.” For most of the day, at least until nuclear fears and March Madness pushed it down the page, the story held a coveted spot just to the left of the videos. Click through, and you [...]

Applesauce vs. Applesauce

Last year, you may recall, I made a lot of applesauce. When I had time, I canned it; when I was lazy, I just stuck it in the freezer. Nine months later, we’ve been eating lots of each. The results?

No contest.

The canned applesacue is sooooo much better than the frozen. It has excellent texture, a [...]

IgnitePhilly postmortem

(Thanks to relaxing for the photo, via Flickr.)

IgnitePhilly was awesome! Thanks so much to the crew for inviting me, to all of you who came out to pack the room, and to the other presenters for putting on such a great show. There was so much clamour and din at Johnny [...]

Brandied Pears

Like regular canned pears, only drunk.

Brandied Pears

5 pounds ripe, yet firm, pears
Sugar syrup, at your preferred level of sweetness (I like 1 sugar: 2 water)
Several cups brandy

1) Put on a pot for a boiling water bath and sterilize your jars. I used 2 quarts and 2 pints. Life will be easier if you use wide-mouth [...]

Canned Pears with Star Anise

Normally, I am a fan of the hot-pack approach to canning fruit, as it helps you fit more fruit into each jar. A recipe in last month’s New York Times, however, convinced me that it’s silly to poach pears separately, since a water-bath canning process will effectively poach the pears for you. I found their [...]

Peach Syrup

Should you be so lucky as to still have access to peaches, and should you decide to can some, may I recommend a) that you drown them in honey and b) that you can the leftover juice/syrup/nectar as a base for delicious cocktails for sometime in the future?

Peaches in Honey (for canning)

Straight out of the [...]

Cherry Raspberry Jam

It’s not too late for raspberries! Cherries came and went long ago, but if you happened to freeze some, you can still make a fabulous, sweet-tart jam that tastes like summer. The raspberries melt into a luscious sauce studded with the cherries. It’s by far my favorite jam—the kind you hate to open because the [...]

Saving Seeds

Harvest season is winding down—within a month or so we’ll be posting on what we did with all that food we canned, instead of how to can it. Meanwhile, it’s our last chance to squirrel away some seeds for next year. This is my first time attempting to save seeds, so I’m winging it. Here’s [...]

Roasted Tomato Salsa

My problem with homemade canned tomato salsa is that it always ends up tasting cooked—but not in a good way—from the canning process. It’s as if you made a batch of pico de gallo, boiled it for 20 minutes, then chilled it and served it. Nothin’ but nasty. I’ve eventually come to the conclusion that [...]

The Day After the Canvolution

Yesterday we celebrated the Canvolution, a day of food preservation to celebrate tradition, the harvest, and local foodways. I spent the morning doing a “dry demo” at the Clark Park Farmer’s Market, then taught my inaugural water-bath canning class. I hope those of you who stopped by to ask a question or attended the class [...]

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