With that stated, I can't wait to tell you about this latest find. I have been searching for a book on preserving food for ages, and even went so far as to purchase "Preserving the Taste" by Edon Waycott, which was recommended on another blog. I was disappointed with the book.
So the hunt was on again. I happened to be "over the mountain" at a shopping mall and popped into the bookstore there. Shelves and shelves of recipe books - and I didn't have enough time to do them justice. I gave the shelves a quick once over - and fortuitously my eyes came to rest on exactly the section that I needed. In bold, rather garish, print I read: "The Preserving Book" by Lynda Brown. (Click here to see it on kalahari.net or here for amazon.com). I grabbed the book with my free hand, put down my shopping bags in my other hand, and began to hastily page through it.
I couldn't believe my eyes - it was absolutely perfect! I had just won the preserving book lottery! I was so excited that I shouted out, "That's it!". (I only realised that I had vocalised my thoughts when I noticed heads turning my way LOL).
I am going to try and give you a glimpse of what is in this book, but it is so full of fresh and amazing ideas that I hardly know where to start.
It provides a chart, and details, on 29 fruits and 42 vegetables and advises which is suitable for preserving via:
natural (leaving in the ground, clamping)
fruit cheeses (intensely flavoured fruit preserves) butters and curds
cordials / syrups
ketchup and sauces
preserving in oil
salting and curing (vegetables/fish and meat)
and brewing and wine making!
The pages are jam packed (LOL with or without the pun) with information and incredible photographs / illustrations. Hopefully, without infringing on copyright, here is a taster of what the book contains:
There are so many details, and delicious recipes in this book - I couldn't wait to start. But it was near the end of the day. My eyes happened to fall on an absolute gem - "Bottled whole tomatoes". Easy peasy - just wash the tomatoes, sprinkle salt and sugar and lemon juice over them - toss, ram into your preserving jar, seal and cook via the hot bath method. Brilliant! Even this novice could do that. I did :-)
I used some surplus baby tomatoes which I had harvested on Friday. The recipe is easily convertible for cooking in the solar oven.
|The tomatoes "shrink" whilst they are in the|
hot water bath - producing a delicious juice :-)
It is the type of book that one can use over and over again and then, when one is too old to continue preserving, pass it on to a daughter or son and it will still be applicable in 50 - 100 years time.
Now - all I need to do is get to the local market and purchase all those fruits and vegetables which I am unable to grow but would like to preserve... I now know how!