Preserving Summer: The Benefits of Canning and Preserving Produce

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.

Quince Jelly Recipe, Apricot BBQ Sauce Recipe, Mandarin Marmalade Recipe

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Cardamon and Pepper-dusted Fish with Green Beans and Tomato Concasse Recipe

We don’t eat a lot of fish because of its very high price here. But, on occasion, we pick up 1 kilo or so of Fresh Water Basa Fillets from our local supermarket for around $7.85 per kilo. Here’s a very elegant dish which I threw together with some ingredients we had on hand.

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Mutton, Mushroom and Walnut Stirfry Recipe

Another dish mainly made up of pantry items, plus 600g of mutton leg steaks which are always very affordable at the local supermarket – sometimes around $5 a kilo. As per my usual Chinese stir-fry method, the mutton was very finely sliced against the grain while very cold – actually not quite fully defrosted – as this helps achieve a very fine slice. The slices were then mixed into the mystical veleveting mixture for true-to-Chinese-takeaway authenticity. Here’s the full recipe – note: you could also use beef, chicken, lamb or pork for this recipe instead of mutton.

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Simplest Spicy Summer Soup Recipe

It has been pretty hot here lately and as such we haven’t felt like cooking a lot. This dish reflects that, as it took about 10 minutes to make and a minimal amount of ingredients.

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Lemon Chicken Marsala Recipe

Here’s a great-tasting, super-easy chicken recipe that I threw together the other day for an early dinner. This dish started with a corn-feed chicken which was on special at our local supermarket – about $6.00 for a 1.5kg bird. Marsala is a sweet, aromatic fortified wine. If you can’t find it you could use a medium-dry or a sweet sherry instead.

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Lemon and Herb Corned Beef Recipe -AND- The Easiest Homemade Mayonnaise!

This lemon and herb corned beef was really good served with salad, a tablespoon or so of mustard pickles, and a generous dollop of homemade mayonnaise.

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‘Simon Johnson’ Tomato and Chilli Penne with Prawns and Parmesan Recipe

Today I decided that it was about time I cooked up the gift that my boss gave me for Christmas – a food hamper containing all the ingredients for a pasta dinner for two.

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Creamy Garlic Prawns with Asparagus and Pilaf Recipe -AND- How to Make Prawn Stock

This is another recipe utilizing more leftovers from Christmas – this time leftover frozen cooked prawns, tinned asparagus and pouring cream. You could certainly use uncooked prawns, however, and fresh asparagus too if you have those instead. The sauce is made using a strained stock consisting of the leftover prawn heads and shells, boiled up with garlic, a bay leaf, and some peppercorns. The result was a rich and very tasty essence of prawn that really delivers the taste of the sea to your sauces. Here are the recipes for the stock/essence, the creamy garlic prawns and asparagus, and the pilaf…

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New Year Salmon Skies

This evening a beautiful purple, pink, orange and yellow sunset filled the sky. The colours deepened over time to a lovely rich blend of purple and orange.
Happy New Year!

Curry Egg Salad Recipe


This dish is a Christmas-time favourite in my family. The creamy curry mayonnaise completely envelops the scrumptiously hard-boiled eggs and crunchy iceberg lettuce. It’s a creamy eggy lettucey delight. You would think that the mayonnaise and sour cream content would make the dish overbearingly creamy and rich, but in fact it’s incredibly delicious and moreish. Here is the recipe I used

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