Search This Blog

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Preserving Your Summer Harvest

My trip to visit family in Minnesota this summer was well spent. We fit in a little bit of everything: hiking, canoeing, wine tasting, cooking, and relaxing with family and friends. To my good fortune, my sister Jennifer sent me home with dried versions of her garden's bounty and I will savor them all winter long.

Despite the busy life of a brand new mom, Jennifer finds time to grow a garden, ferment her own foods, and preserve some of her efforts. It's great to use fresh food whenever it's available, but it's just as important to be able to cook good things from your pantry when they're not.

Jennifer uses her food dehydrator continuously to dry and preserve whatever is in season (like jalapenos and hot wax chili peppers), things she has an abundance of (like onion, garlic, and chives), and things that come in limited supply (like purple basil and chive flowers).

I can grind minced onion, garlic cloves, chives, and chili peppers into a mixture to use as a dry rub or an additive-free seasoning for soups and sauces. I'll save the purple basil and chive flowers for special occasions. The blackberry vinegar will add a tart and fruity flavor to salad dressings and vinaigrettes.

There are lots of ways to preserve foods; dehydrating and making vinegars are just two. Learn about more methods in these six books. They will inspire you to preserve your summer harvest (whether you're picking the garden or shopping at the farmer's market) in the way that works best for you.

Preserving Food without Freezing or Canning: Traditional Techniques Using Salt, Oil, Sugar, Alcohol, Vinegar, Drying, Cold Storage, and Lactic Fermentation

Preserving Everything: Can, Culture, Pickle, Freeze, Ferment, Dehydrate, Salt, Smoke, and Store Fruits, Vegetables, Meat, Milk, and More (Countryman Know How)

Canning for a New Generation: Bold, Fresh Flavors for the Modern Pantry

The Art of Fermentation: An In-Depth Exploration of Essential Concepts and Processes from around the World

Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook that Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats

Preserving Summer's Bounty: A Quick and Easy Guide to Freezing, Canning, and Preserving, and Drying What You Grow

No comments: