Canning seems to have garnered a lot of attention lately. Fitting, being in the back to basics craze the world has come upon. Working in restaurants, a cook/chef will often make pickles and jams. Lord knows how many things I’ve pickled. But seldomly do we ever can anything.
That being said, I wanted to give canning a shot. I wanted to be able to reach into my pantry and pull out a jar of preserved peaches, blueberry jam, or pickles in the winter (or whenever I felt the need to) and be reminded of whats to come again in the following seasons.
Canning can be intimidating, primarily for the fear of botulism. So it is best to find a reliable source as opposed to going on a whim. Upon flipping through some books at the Strand ( an amazing bookstore on 12th st. and Broadway in NYC) I happened to pick up Tart and Sweet 101 Canning and Pickling recipes for the Modern Kitchen and started to flip through the pages. What automatically caught my attention was when I stumbled upon this.
“Our goal is to explain the art and science of home preserving, in a straightforward easy-to-follow manner.” -Kelly Geary
Sold! I grabbed the book made my purchase and began reading.
This book is immediately engaging allowing the reader to be at ease, throughout the whole book, while learning how to can and try out different recipes. There are a few important pages on the science behind canning (the most important part).
Such as: The proper canning method to use depending on the pH (acidity level) of what is to be canned. And the pros and cons that can be associated with each. They were also kind enough to include an essential tool and nonessential tool (but useful) page, as well as a page that breaks down the initial investment of a new canner vs. an seasoned canner. Believe it or not they estimated a seasoned canner to save more or less $70 each season!
There is a very useful section that walks you through the whole process of water bath canning (the preferred method used in this book, as it is the easiest to do) with several pictures to accompany the process.
Overall Tart and Sweet 101 was a good purchase for someone like me, who wanted to get a proper introduction into canning, without falling asleep in the process.
So if you’re interested in canning, pickling and preserving, this is the book for you.
I look forward to trying these recipes out and sharing them.