Saturday, September 24, 2011

Canning, canning, canning

Waiting on more lemons to preserve
Well, I've gone a little nuts now that I have a bigger kitchen, more cabinets and a whole larder/laundry room again. Plus, it's summer... Albeit, a kind of crummy summer cropwise, but I've managed.
To date there have been:
-Nearly 6 pounds of local, self picked blueberries bagged and frozen.
-Half a peck of pickles. Lower East Side Sours. Yum.
-David Lebovitz's Pickled Carrots in a magical bottomless jar in the fridge (the same for beets).
-Lemongrass and Lime Confit.
-Korean Red Pepper Veggies in quantity.
-Allspice liqueur
-Sauerkraut. Jah.
-Plum Sauce gleaned from the lovely bag of the scrummy stonefruit that appeared on my back stoop last week (I am so giddy for our neighboring tree. It is a fantastic producer!)
-Pickled Okra (a miserable failure with okra that was a wee bit too senior to pickle whole- read stringy)

-Jubilee Farm's Green Beans and some outside sourced Yellow Wax, both pickled.
-Tomatillos- as salsa and as little cooked critters that'll be used in pork shoulder roasts this winter.

-A 15# local Albacore all fileted and packed into wee jars with lemongrass or preserved lemons (also, homemade) or the traditional bay leaf, peppercorn and garlic.
-And last but certainly not least, The Green Tomato Conserve. Which has created several addicted households already... It looks like there may be loads more GTC in the future as the late summer sun withdraws before finishing the job of ripening the fruits of those overburdened tomato plants generous friends have all reported. There's a rough recipe below. I encourage swapping out some of the aromatics I used for some of your favorites. This first batch was perfumed with cardamon and coriander and probably would be just as home on an onion pakora as a chevre tartine.

So here are some recipes and also glamour shots of my canning fun.

Green Tomato Conserve
2 organic lemons, scrubbed
12 - 18 oz. water
16 medium sized green tomatoes, blanched, peeled, cored and chopped
10 green cardamon pods, 3 cloves, 1 piece mace, 1 T coriander, 1 small cinnamon stick tied into a large piece of cheesecloth and tied with a long string
2 cups tart apples, peeled, cored and diced
3 cups sugar

Peel lemons end to end, then cut peel into thin slivers. Using at least an 8 quart stockpot, cook peel in the water for 30 minutes (start with 12 oz then add as the water cooks off, making sure pan never dries). Add apples, tomatoes, sugar and the spice bag (tie the long string onto the handle of the pot for easy removal). Bring to full boil and boil 20 minutes, stirring often.
Remove spice bag. Reduce heat to simmer and cook a further 20 minutes, stirring often.
Slice peeled lemons very thin, then add to mixture and cook a final 20 minutes, stirring often.
Pour into sterilized jars and seal. Water process for 15 minutes if not fridge storing.
Gobble up!
Some Blueberries in Molasses that, erm, molded...