Archive for Canning and Preserving

Garlic Scape Jam Plus a Giveaway!

Scapes! Scapes! Scapes! I’m obsessed. Every year I look forward to early June, when the Scapes are in season at the Farmer’s Market. I buy handfuls and then come home and turn them into pesto. The season is short, so I usually go back every week until they are gone just to snag more.

With ice cube trays full of frozen pesto now safely stowed in the freezer, I started thinking about other things I could do with scapes. Last year, I’d tried making a jam, but it failed miserably. I added a couple more fails to that count this year, but I finally hit on the right recipe.

The idea for this jam is more along the lines of a red pepper jelly–combining sweet, along with spicy, the tang of the vinegar, and, in this case, garlicky goodness.

I’d serve Garlic Scape Jam atop a baguette or crackers and cream cheese or brie. It brings a savoury element and pairs nicely with the softness of the cheese.

Garlic Scape Jam

I think this would also be killer to serve with any grilled meats. Try including it in your favourite glaze recipe (many glazes call for jam or preserves) to finish off grilled chicken, pork or steak.

The sweet-savory with the hint of garlic really, really rocks.

Bernardin Giveaway

I have one of these awesome home canning kits from Bernardin, and they sent me another one, so I thought I’d give it away to one of you so you can make your own Garlic Scape Jam or whatever you like!

It comes with:

  • a rack for easily raising and lowering your jars into the canning bath
  • a 21 quart canner
  • a jar lifter
  • a funnel
  • a magnetic lid lifter (this is my fave thing!)
  • a bubble remover
  • a 4 pack Collection Elite decorative jars with lids
  • Original Crystals pectin and
  • a recipe booklet.

To win: in the comments section below, tell me what you’d make with your new canning kit.

(CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED) 

For an additional entry, tweet:

Garlic Scape Jam

(recipe adapted from Wood Ridge Homestead)

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup Garlic scapes, washed–trim off anything above the flower
  • 2 green Bell peppers, washed, seeded, and cut into chunks
  • 1 cup white or apple cider vinegar
  • 5 cups sugar
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (optional–if you like a little heat)
  • 1 package Bernardin liquid Pectin

Method: 

  • Place 6 clean 250 ml mason jars on a rack in a boiling water canner; cover jars with water and heat to a simmer (180°F/82°C). Set screw bands aside. Heat SNAP LID® sealing discs in hot water, not boiling (180°F/82°C). Keep jars and sealing discs hot until ready to use.
  • Chop up the scapes into manageable 2″ sections, and put them in the blender. Blend the crap out of them until they are nicely pureed. Place them in a large, heavy-bottomed, stainless steel pot.
  • Repeat the same process (pureeing) with the green peppers, and add them to the pot as well, including any liquid that results from the blending.
  • Now add the vinegar and the sugar (and the hot pepper if you are using), and stir everything well to mix. Bring to a boil and allow to slow boil for 10 minutes. Add the pectin, and hard boil for one minute to thicken.
  • Using the funnel, ladle jam into hot jar to within 1/4 inch (0.5 cm) of top of jar (headspace). Using the air bubble tool, remove air bubbles and adjust headspace, if required, by adding more jam. Wipe jar rim removing any food residue. Using your magnetic lid lifter, pull a lid out of the hot water, and centre hot sealing disc on clean jar rim. Screw band down until resistance is met, then increase to fingertip tight. Return filled jar to rack in canner. Repeat for remaining jam.
  • Using the jar lifter, fill up the canning rack that you’ve placed in the canner, in the position where it’s not in the water. Lower the rack into the water, ensuring that all jars are covered by at least one inch (2.5 cm) of water. Cover canner and bring water to full rolling boil before starting to count processing time. At altitudes up to 1000 ft (305 m), process – boil filled jars – 10 minutes.*
  • When processing time is complete, turn stove off, remove canner lid, wait 5 minutes, then remove jars without tilting and place them upright on a protected work surface. Cool upright, undisturbed 24 hours; DO NOT RETIGHTEN screw bands (listen for the “pop”s! It’s the most satisfying sound in the world!).
  • After cooling check jar seals. Sealed lids curve downward and do not move when pressed. Remove screw bands; wipe and dry bands and jars. Store screw bands separately or replace loosely on jars, as desired. Label and store jars in a cool, dark place. For best quality, use home canned foods within one year.

Check out my other canning and preserving recipes here.

Pear-Fig-Rosemary Chutney

This will be the last of the “preserving nature’s bounty” posts for this year.

A couple months back, I made my annual pilgrimage with my friend Lili out to Richmond Country Farms, which is a full-on, working farm. While their produce may not be certified organic, they don’t spray, and I love that I can buy produce that was grown within a very short distance of where I’m purchasing it.

I had some goals when I went there: salsa was on my brain, and I also wanted to make some jams. But I also will often wander into a farm market and see what inspires me. That day, it was figs and bosc pears.

Beauty, eh?

Beauty, eh?

I bought these things not even entirely sure what I’d do with them, but they were so beautiful, I just needed to have them.

Some internet research lead me to this recipe. I’ve adapted it and “north americanized” it. It’s a real beautiful balance of fruit and acidity, which leans a bit closer to being sweet rather than sour.

I would serve this with a baguette and a beautiful cheese (this is a sheep’s milk one) and a glass of bold red wine. You could also wrap it up in pastry and make it into tartlets or hand pies. You could also serve it as a condiment, on top of sweet potato latkes with a dollop of sour cream, for example. Or, there’s always the spoon-jar-mouth method of serving, which this recipe loans itself quite nicely to.

IMG_2270

Pear-Fig-Rosemary Chutney

Pear-Fig-Rosemary Chutney

Ingredients: 

  • 1 500 gram package of fresh figs, de-stemmed and quartered
  • 3 bosc pears, peeled, cored and cubed
  • 1/2 a medium-sized onion, sliced lengthwise
  • 1/2 c orange juice
  • 1 c brown sugar
  • 3/4 c apple cider vinegar
  • 1 large sprig of rosemary

Method:

  • Place the onions, pears and figs into a large pot with the orange juice and bring to a gentle simmer. Allow to simmer until the onions and fruit are cooked and the fruit has broken down.
  • Add the sprig of rosemary, vinegar and sugar and bring to a brisk boil, then reduce the heat to a good simmer and cook until the chutney is done, stirring occasionally. You’ll know its done, because it will be a thick, jam-like consistency, and if you put a spoonful on a plate, when you draw your finger through it, it won’t close right back up.
  • Enjoy immediately, or store in the fridge, or preserve using instructions here.
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