Sep 012012

Who doesn’t love having a jar of marinara in the pantry?  It’s so comforting to have; it’s nearly an instant meal. Pour it in a pot with a bit of cream, and you have tomato bisque. Smear it on some dough and you have pizza. Bake a spaghetti squash while you raid the rest of your pantry, and you have a gorgeous, healthy plate of Puttanesca. Brown up some Italian sausage while you boil water, toss in some pasta and throw in your marinara and boom, dinner is served. Look how thick and luscious it is! But buying it in the store isn’t always cheap, and sometimes there are some questionable ingredients included.  So what do you do when you have a garden-full of tomatoes and an empty pantry?  Make [… To read more, click here …]

 September 1, 2012  Posted by  Canning, Drying & Preserving, Pantry Basics, Summer Tagged with: , , ,  Comments Off on Homemade, Cannable Marinara Sauce – No Pressure Canner Required
Aug 302012

Pico de Gallo for Canning makes 12-14 pints   10 pounds canning tomatoes 1 pound red onion Jalapenos (I use 8 for “medium” and 12 for “hot” salsa), stems removed 2 large Poblano peppers, stems removed 2 large heads of garlic, cloves separated and paper removed and discarded 2 Tablespoons pickling salt 1 Tablespoon fresh ground pepper 4 ounces prepared lime juice   Weigh out your ingredients in advance.  If your tomatoes need a bit of trimming before use, add a few extra ounces (I normally add 4 to 6 ounces) to the scale to accommodate for trimming.  It is important that you use tomatoes specified as “canning” tomatoes for this recipe to ensure that the pH of your salsa is safe for processing without a pressure-canner.  If you are [… To read more, click here …]

Aug 252010

In my ever continuing journey to both eat unique, seasonal meals as well as cook ahead to make future meals easier I’ve been trying to both relish and enjoy the bounty of summer fresh and sweet, while also preserving some of it for my winter pantry. Lately, every week or so I have one “Big” cooking day.  I make a loaf or two of bread, feed all of my sourdoughs (yes, I have three now.), maybe shred some zucchini for the freezer, and then choose a recipe from one of my preserving books to make up for the pantry while summer produce is plentiful. I guess you could say that I’m making my own convenience foods when, you know, it’s convenient. While flipping through a recent read from the library [… To read more, click here …]

Aug 202010

I may have mentioned once or twice . . . or 47 times . . . that my husband and I met while in college in New Mexico.  Both out-of-state students, we fell in love with each other, AND Southwestern Cuisine.  I love any and everything green chile.  Hamburgers?  Infinitely better with chile on top.  Breakfast burritos?  Yes, please.  Shredded Pork? Tortilla Soup?  Calabacitas?  Enchiladas?  Queso?  Stew?  Chile Rellenos?  All better with green chile. So when Hatch Chile Season comes along, I take advantage of it in any way I can! I know that every year around mid-August the chiles are coming. I find reasons to drop by my local grocery, just in case they’ve arrived already.  This past Tuesday I arrived just as they were unloading and setting up [… To read more, click here …]

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