I love garlic!!! and I could easily add it to every single one of my dishes. I have been successfully growing my own garlic for 2 years now. It is pretty easy. So what to do with all the garlic you have and how to keep it going for the whole year? You preserve it!!
You can keep fresh garlic for a long time if you just keep it in a cool, dry place, but it will eventually dry and go off. I have found out 2 ways of preserving the garlic that also gives me different flavor profiles (pungent and mild) that I can use in my meals. A delicious bypass product of the preserve methods is nothing more than great home made infused garlic olive oil - That is what I call a win-win.
Method 1: Pungent
Although not as pungent as fresh garlic, you can simply keep garlic longer by peeling it, and placing it in an sterilize jar completely covered with Olive Oil (I use Extra Virgin). Close the jar tightly and store in the refrigerator - it last for months and the oil gets infused with a nice mild garlic flavor.
Method 2: Mild
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Friday, September 24, 2010
Ingredients: Red grapes (seedles1 pound), sugar (2 cups), lemon juice (1 tbsp)
We will be canning the jam/jelly so we need to sterilize the jars (see post on canning tomatoes for sterilization process).
Wash the grapes, put them in a pot squeezing them with your hands as you go. Add a little water and start cooking at medium heat
Put it back in the pot and cook for a little longer, until smooth like in the picture. Then add the sugar and keep stirring until it bubbles and a thermometer has 212 C. Another way to see if it is ready is to put a little of the jam on a ceramic plate and place in the freezer for a few second and see if stays in shape. If it is too runny you need to keep cooking and stirring
Other posts you may like:
Homemade Chipotle Cranberry Sauce
|Ready for an ice bath to peel them|
So you want to know what to do with all your yummy tomatoes? I have been canning tomatoes a lot this season, as we cannot keep up with the production of my wonderful plants!!! I have found the exercise so fun and relaxing, so here I am sharing it with you - this recipe is for whole tomatoes, but you can also can diced tomatoes and sauce:
Pick the best tomatoes you can get (from the store or from your garden), wash them and peel them by putting them for a few minutes in boiling water and then removing them and adding them to a bath of cold iced water. The skin of the tomato will crack and it can be removed easily.
Sterilize a few canning jars, I can fit about 4 medium/large tomatoes in a pint jar, so you can guess more or less how many jars you need based on how many tomatoes you have. To sterilize, wash the jars and lids in warm soapy water, put the jars in a pot with cold water and bring to the boil. Once the pot gets to a rolling boil, keep it boiling for 10 minutes and then turn it off. Once it is off you can add the lids and cover the pot. Keep the jars in the hot water until you need them.
Take your peeled tomatoes and put them in a pot with some water, boil them for 5 minutes and you will be ready to start packing
|Boil them for 5 minutes|
To pack the tomatoes, take one jar at a time, add 1/4 of a tsp of citric acid to the bottom for a pint size (1/2tsp for a quarter), the add the tomatoes, making sure you leave at least one finger of space from the top (do not fill to the rim)
|you can substitute citric acid for lemon juice or vinegar 5% acidity|
|This jar is too full - either pack it down with plastic spatula or remove some tomatoes|
|These jars have been filled to the right quantity|
Put the closed jars on your water canner (Big pot with a grid at the bottom - you can buy it in supermarkets or online for around $30). Fill with warm water until the water is at least one inch over the jars and boil. Once it is on a rolling boil, boild hard for 45 minutes
Thursday, September 16, 2010
- Half a gallon of milk (you can use whole, 2% or skimmed - the more fat content the creamier the yogurt - so it is your choice)
- 8 oz yogurt starter ( For your first batch you need a small plain yogurt, after that you can use 8 oz of your own home made one)
- Heavy bottom pan - big enough to hold half a gallon of milk
- Food thermometer (you can do it without but it is more risky)
- 5 pint mason jars (or any other glass containers - mayo jars work great)
- An ice cooler - yeap! the same one you use for picnics and drinks during the summer
Sterilize your mason jars and lids (put them in a big pan and cover with cold water, put on stove on high and wait until it reaches a rolling boil - boil for 10 minutes. Turn off and leave in hot water, covered until needed)
The next morning open the cooler (the water will still be warm) and remove your yogurt jars and put them in the fridge - they will keep for 2 months. If you do the 3 hours, please check one jar to make sure the yogurt has hardened, if not, return to the cooler and leave for another hour - try it again.
Do not eat your small 8 oz jar - (or half pint jar) it will be your starter for the next time!!!
Enjoy!!! and please let me know how it worked for you.
|My girl's parfait|
Monday, September 13, 2010
Then due to an over supply of tomatoes and cucumber, I decided to do some canning. So by now I have canned lots of tomatoes and made 3 different types of pickles. We opened our first pickled batch today and my son LOVED it!! that is what I called success! I also did some freezing of fresh tomatoes and some tomato sauce made entirely from the garden bounty :)
A trip to Michigan and a close encounter with some raspberry bushes lead me to make some Jam. Thanks to an old recipe from a friend we also now have home made strawberry jam for my next triffles!
A trip to Wisconsin got me into dairy - I have just finished my first batch of home made yogurt and I am tackling cheese later in the week - Mozzarella is the goal.
I LOVE this. truly do.