elevating the status of the salad

Category Archives: preserving

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Sometimes G goes on a ketchup, butter, and bacon diet, like at dinner last night.

Then I wake up the next morning and try to do some damage control.

Enter Greek Yogurt Ice Pops. Thanks to CB for the inspiration!

I used blackberries and peaches because that’s what was at the Carroll Gardens Farmer’s Market yesterday, but you can use any fruit/yogurt combination. Why not put in some greens, too?

We did rainbow pops last year without yogurt and those are just as delicious but in a different vegan sort of way. It depends on what you’re in the mood for. If you want to know more about these freezer molds, check out that post. 

Ingredients:

1/3 cup Greek Yogurt (We love Wallaby)

a handful of blackberries (I used 5 large ones)

1 peach, peeled

1 teaspoon honey

1/2 cup water, more as needed

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in blender and blend until liquified. Add more water to thin as needed. Freeze for at least 4 hours. Enjoy!

BONUS: If you have a toddler, this human can help you with every step of this process. G especially liked putting the handles in the molds like a little puzzle. 

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Here’s another way to preserve the jalapeños that are taking over my rooftop. If you don’t have this problem, its worth buying a whole bunch of hot peppers so you can make your own spicy sauce, which is much better than anything you can buy in the store.  I only slightly modified yet another incredible recipe from Karen Solomon’s Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It.

This recipe makes about 3 cups and the sauce will last in the fridge for 6 months.

Warning: Wear gloves and work in a well-ventilated area when working with jalapeños.

Ingredients:

20-25 jalapeño peppers

2 large cloves of garlic, peeled

1.5 T kosher salt

1 cup distilled white vinegar

2 T sugar

Directions:

  1. Wash and dry the peppers and cut off the stems. Slice them in half lengthwise. Broil, outside skin near flame, until black and charred. Check the  every few minutes as once they start charring, they turn black pretty quick.
  2. In a food processor or blender, puree the garlic until minced. Add the peppers, salt, vinegar, and sugar and puree for about 3 minutes. If you have a high power blender, just run all the ingredients together for 1 minute.
  3. Transfer to a glass jar and refrigerate.

 


Here’s a quick way to preserve jalapeño peppers. Great for topping nachos, salads, in sandwiches, etc. 

Ingredients:

3/4 cup distilled white vinegar

3/4 cup water 

1 garlic clove, crushed

3 T white sugar

1 T kosher salt

10 jalapeños, sliced into rings – use gloves to chop or you’ll regret it later when you take out your contact lenses. 

Directions: 

Pour all ingredients except peppers into a small pot. Once mixture boils, stir in jalapeños and remove from heat. Let sit for ten minutes and watch the color turn before your very eyes. 
Use tongs or a slotted spoon to transfer jalapeños  to a pint size mason jar and cover with vinegar mixture. Bottle it up, and enjoy topping your food with a kick for the next month or so. 



Here’s a great way to get creative with your bumper crop of cucumbers, and it takes only 10 minutes from garden to plate. I used a mandolin for maximum beauty and because I like to live on the edge. Thanks to Karen Solomon and her book Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It for this and so many other fun kitchen ideas. 

Ingredients:

1 large cucumber – sliced thin 

1 small red onion-sliced thin

2 teaspoons brown rice syrup (or sugar or your sweetener of preference)

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1/2 cup unseasoned rice vinegar 

Mix all ingredients together and let sit for 30 minutes. It can be refrigerated for 2 days. 


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It was a cool day at the lake today, so we headed to The Berry Patch in Etna Green, Indiana for blueberry picking. This jam became the perfect highlight of this colorfully festive blueberry and ricotta crostini which can be made in less than 30 minutes from beginning to end. Add a strawberry or raspberry for an additional color and you have a perfect snacketizer for the 4th of July.

Ingredients: (this makes about 3/4 cups jam when cooked)

2 cups blueberries

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 T lemon juice

Heat all ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring frequently until thickened. You know its ready when is starts to stick to the spoon and your toddler is screaming that he wants some NOW!

For the crostini, simply broil some slices of french bread in the oven. Then get creative with decorating with ricotta cheese, blueberry jam, and your red berry of choice.

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Today was an exciting day at the Carroll Gardens Farmer’s Market. There were ramps and asparagus! Seeing these signs of spring made me feel better about still wearing my winter coat on April 21st. I was hoping that Grazin’ Angus had some fresh cream so I could make my own butter, but they didn’t.  They did have their own butter, which I used for this recipe.  Thanks for Birdworms and Buttermilk for this great idea. I think this would be a great base for sautéing some of the asparagus I got this morning. I tasted a little bit of this today, and reluctantly froze the rest. 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 pound butter, softened (I used unsalted, so I added salt to the recipe)
  • 1 bunch ramps, cleaned
  • zest and juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (omit if using salted butter)

Directions:

  1. Place butter in medium bowl; set aside.
  2. Blanch ramps in boiling water for about 30 seconds, then place in an ice water bath to stop the cooking. Squeeze excess water and then chop the ramps.
  3. Add the chopped ramps, zest, lemon juice, and salt (if using) to the butter and mix thoroughly with a spoon or spatula.
  4. Form the butter into a log shape on a piece of parchment paper. Tightly roll the parchment paper around the butter, and twist the ends tootsie-roll style. Store in the freezer until you are ready to enjoy.

Cue the old school Zelda theme song, because I’m on a quest: make a canning salsa that is spicy enough for my husband to enjoy the heat all winter long. This recipe came from the Food Channel. The result is a salsa with a decent amount of spice (but my quest is not over yet). I know that I can just add some habaneros for some serious heat, and that would be great for a salsa to stick in the fridge and eat within the week. However, whenever I want to put tomatoes in the cabinet for a year, I am wary of playing with the ingredients. That’s because I know that it has to have the correct level of acidity, etc. in order to avoid spoiling the food. Does anyone out there know of a tested recipe for a spicy canning tomato salsa? I think there are a still a few weeks left of tomato season, and I would like to give it one more try.

That being said, this salsa is fairly easy and pretty delicious. Adjust the number of jalapeños, or take out some seeds if that’s your preference. This recipe could also use a bit more salt, but I would taste it first and decide what you want to do. These tomatoes came from a farm stand in Amagansett, and the jalapeños came from the rooftop garden.

One more note: My makeshift canner holds 4 pint jars at a time. I only processed 4 jars and put the other two directly in the fridge. Then when I noticed how the salsa wasn’t salty, I started to doubt that it would stay good in the cabinet. The next day, I noticed some air bubbles in a few of the jars, so I decided put three more in the fridge. I didn’t want to take any chances. I only have one jar left in the cabinet. I will open that one in a few months and let you know if it worked.

For more information about canning, you can check out my other experiments:

Peach Salsa (this one has details about how to can)

Applesauce

Jalapeño Jam

Pickled Green Beans

Strawberry Jam

Ingredients:

  • 6 pounds of tomatoes
  • 10 jalapeños, chopped (seeds included)
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 9 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1/3 cup lime juice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 3 onions (preferably 1 white, 1 yellow, 1 red)
  • 6 pint jars (either small mouth or wide mouth is fine)
  • Lids and rings
  • Water bath with rack
  1. Sterilize jars and seals. (I did this by putting them in my dishwasher which gets super hot. Some dishwashers have a sterilize cycle, and that would work, too.)
  2. Start heating up your water for your water bath, if canning
  3. Put clean tomatoes in boiling water for 30-45 seconds, and then plunge them into ice water. The tomatoes will be easy to peel as a result.
  4. Peel tomatoes and cut out cores or bad spots. Chop the tomatoes to desired size (they will cook down so leave them slightly larger than you want them to be in the salsa).
  5. Mix tomatoes, garlic, lime juice, salt, and cumin and bring to a boil.
  6. Add onion, peppers, and cilantro. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 7-10 minutes.
  7. Remove 1 cup of liquid (to thicken the salsa).
  8. Put salsa in sterilized jars leaving 1/2 inch of headroom. (Stop here and put lids on if you are not canning)
  9. I did not do this, but I will next time: Use a chopstick or knife to slide around the jar to get rid of air bubbles.
  10. Wipe the rim of the jar, place sterilized seal on jar, and tighten the ring.
  11. Place jars in water bath for 15 minutes (time depends on altitude – more time for higher altitudes).
  12. Remove jars and let stand for at least 24 hours. Remove rings (optional) and store. If the jar did not seal, place it in refrigerator and use within a week.