Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Preserving and Canning

Alright, so I'm the first to admit that this is the very first year I've EVER tried to do any type of canning/preserving...but I have to say that I'm very proud of my (tasty) results. What I thought would be a simple afternoon experiment with one or two recipes has turned me into a mean canning machine. Just ask my DH. I think I was living in the kitchen for a few weeks straight...preparing my jars, lids and bands...whilst totally ignoring any and all household duties (like making dinner).My love affair with canning/preserving really started a few years ago when my dear GF Joanne gave me a couple jars of her amazing Nanking Cherry Jam. I kid you not, I would take these jars and hide them from my DH so that they would not be inhaled within the first 20 minutes of being in our house. It's like heaven in a jar, and I would ration out the portions to ensure that it would last for as long as possible. Her kids can now rest safe knowing that I will not be competing for jars of her precious jam next year :)

Below is a small sampling of the goodies I have made. A huge shout out to the fine folks at both Bernardin and Epicurious for giving me the confidence and the guidance to try this out (and subject my DH to being even more of a human guinea pig taste tester). While I have mainly stuck to recipes I have found either online or in my small stack of preserving books, I'm thinking that I'm going to experiment a little more next year.

  • Spicy Red Pepper Jelly - The fine folks at never let me down. My friends and family actually have started fighting over who gets the precious jars when I make a batch.
  • Zesty Zucchini Relish (
  • Spicy Beans (
  • "Habby to Heat You" Hot Sauce - oh man....this is so good. Unfortunately, when I created this tasty (and oh so spicy) concoction, I forgot to take notes. Recipe for this one will follow eventually, when I make my next batch.

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