FREE chapter of Canal House Cooking, Vol. 4 below!
The bursting flavors of summer fruits and vegetables can be made to last all year by canning and preserving them. Canning can brighten your pantry throughout the year, extending the life of perishable produce and utilizing those fruit and vege ‘gluts’ that can sometimes occur when growing food at home.
It’s also a handy way to take advantage of bulk produce that can be cheaply acquired at farmers markets, when certain fruits and veges are at their peak. Take, for instance, a delicious box of ripe tomatoes. They are irresistible for a few days, thickly sliced atop fresh bread, with some bocconcini, fresh basil, salt, pepper and a drizzle of olive oil. But they will spoil if not eaten quickly.
Through the magic of canning and preserving, their rich aroma and flavour can be captured by making delicious homemade sauces and chutneys. It’s a great way to utilize the abundance of summer, providing months of enjoyment when the seasons change and prices go back up.
Melissa Hamilton and Christopher Hirsheimer’s book Canal House Cooking: Farm Markets and Gardens is a great resource that helps to demystify canning and preserving for the average home cook. A free chapter of the book is available below, including recipes for Apricot Jam, Romesco Sauce, and Red Tomato Preserves.
More free recipes from Hamilton & Hirsheimer can be found in the July 2012 Williams-Sonoma catalog.