MY FAMILY CALLS IT ‘PO SAUCE, with the “po” representing the last syllable of the word “apple,” the way my beloved niece pronounced it when she was small. Yesterday, as I hurtled by to give a lecture out their way, I met my brother-in-law at Exit 9 off I-90 to deliver the first load of Pink ‘Po Sauce that started life on my century-old trees. Sigh of relief: 11 quarts and 5 pints moved from my freezer to theirs. On Monday, my friend Katrina had filled the back of her car with my apples, heading home to cook them up. It’s applesauce time, and here’s how that goes: [read more…]
Planting a vegetable garden, or growing herbs, fruits and berries? One of my great pleasures is growing a portion of my own food. I eat the harvest fresh in season, of course, and freeze or can or otherwise store things for the winter, bringing the color and flavor of the summer garden to the offseason table.
TOO MANY BEANS? Kale galore? Tomatoes finally ripening faster than you can use them fresh? Make soup, and freeze it—my favorite and most satisfying way to preserve the harvest, since there’s hardly a winter day when I don’t feel like a bowl of soup. Three favorite, easy recipes to turn your garden into right now: [read more…]
MY SISTER CALLED this morning to wish us well on a dozen years together–”us” being me and Jack–but at first I didn’t know what she meant. I lose track of dates in this rural life, but she had not forgotten: It is 9/11, the darkest day, but also the day that I met Jack. I suppose you could call him my silver lining–or at least a black-and-white one. A recollection on finding some small comfort in a large cat. We wish you all comfort, too.
CANNING IS HOT, and not just when you’re standing over a boiling kettle. America’s grow-you-own, eat-local mania means a lot of us are facing all-at-once bumper crops—but don’t want to waste a bite. To cope, I’ve been gathering tactical advice and recipe ideas, including tips from a new series of segments by Theresa Loe on the public-television show “Growing a Greener World.” Theresa was my guest on this week’s radio show, where we talked jam (without too much sugar or added pectin); what cucumber makes crispy pickles (and doesn’t); the challenges of canning on electric stoves–and even how to improvise a few key tools. [read more…]