Carrot Ginger Soup.

Now that I know my pressure canner isn’t going to explode and kill my family, I decided to make something tasty. My entire family likes Carrot Ginger Soup, but my usual recipe includes almond butter (not something that should be included in a recipe to be pressure canned) so I did a bit of Googlin’ to find something that sounded good.

Carrot Ginger Soup

Carrot Ginger Soup

It turned out beautifully – 6 lovely quarts full of soup (still bubbling when I took this photo). The flavour is bright and cheerful and might even be better than my deeper, nuttier version.

Here’s the recipe:

Carrot Ginger Soup

6 tablespoons butter
4 whole cloves garlic, peeled
2 large Spanish onion, peeled and diced
4 ribs celery, sliced
6 pounds carrots, peeled and sliced
6 tablespoons peeled and chopped fresh ginger
16 cups chicken or vegetable stock
2 teaspoon ground coriander
2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 cup honey
Kosher salt (to taste)
Freshly ground black pepper (to taste)

Directions:

  1. In your favourite large pot, melt the butter.  Saute the garlic, onion, celery, carrots, and ginger root in the melted butter for about 10 minutes.
  2. Add the stock to the pot and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer until the carrots are tender.
  3. Remove the pot from the heat.  Add the spices (not the salt or pepper) and honey. Stir well.
  4. Puree with an immersion blender or in a regular blender (small quantities at a time) until the soup is smooth and no chunks remain.
  5. Taste soup – add salt and/or pepper if desired.
  6. Ladle the soup into prepared jars, leaving 1 inch of head space at the top. Make sure to wipe the rims of the jars so no residue remains.
  7. Put rings and lids on jars.
  8. Pressure can at 11 pounds for 85 minutes.
  9. Check seals and store. If jars do not seal, put soup in fridge and eat within a few days.
  10. To serve, heat and eat OR heat and add a small amount of cream before serving.
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Pressure Canning Test (Chickpeas).

In order to test my pressure canner, I decided to make something cheap and straight-forward. No point wasting a lot of expensive ingredients if I could avoid it. I scanned a bunch of websites and eventually settled on a recipe from a (‘secret’) canning group on Facebook: Hummus Chickpeas. I decided to do 7 pints.

Here’s the recipe:

Chickpeas to use for Hummus

Ingredients:

3.5 cups of dried chickpeas
14 cloves of garlic (peeled)
1/2 teaspoon of garlic salt per pint

Directions:

  1. Add 1/2 cup of chickpeas into the bottom of each pint jar.
  2. Place 2 cloves of garlic into each jar.
  3. Place 1/2 teaspoon of garlic salt in each jar.
  4. Fill each jar with hot water, leaving 1 inch of head space. Put lids and rings on.
  5. Pressure can at 10 pounds for 75 minutes.
Passed the test!

Passed the test!

 

 

To make hummus:

1 jar of chickpeas
2 tablespoons of tahini
1 tablespoon of lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon of cumin

Directions:

  1. Add ingredients to blender. Blend until smooth.
  2. Add reserved liquid – 1 tablespoon at a time – until desired consistency is reached.
  3. Add salt, hot sauce, and any other additional spices or ingredients you like.
  4. Store in the fridge and use within 3 or 4 days.

Crabapple Jelly.

Such a pretty colour!

Such a pretty colour!

We have a beautiful crabapple tree in front of our house and, last year, I made my first-ever batch of jelly. It took forever to gel, the colour was pale, but it tasted pretty good!

This year, I followed the instructions a bit more carefully, had my husband’s help in prepping all of the crabapples (So! Much! Work!) and it turned out beautifully. Look at that colour! It’s a tart, sweet, lovely jelly.

Here’s the recipe:

Crabapple Jelly

Makes about 8 x 250 mL jars

Ingredients:

5.5 pounds crabapples
5 cups of water
1 pouch (85 mL) of liquid pectin
7 1/2 cups of sugar

Directions: 

  1. Wash the crabapples, then remove stem and blossom ends. (Don’t peel them – they’ve got loads of pectin in them!) Chop coarsely.
  2. Combine crabapples with water in a stainless steel saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover, and boil for 10 minutes.
  3. Using a potato masher, crush the apples, then simmer 5 minutes longer. Remove from heat.
  4. Pour the liquid and the apple mixture into a dampened jelly bag and let the juice drip for at least 2 hours or overnight. (Remember, if you squeeze the bag, the jelly will be cloudy – but it will get things done faster!)
  5. Prepare 8 x 250 ml (half-pint) jars, lids and rings.
  6. Measure 5 cups of the prepared apple juice into a large, deep stainless steel saucepan. Add all of the sugar.
  7. Over high heat, bring the mixture to a full rolling boil that cannot be stirred down. Add liquid pectin.
  8. Boil hard 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and skim off foam.
  9. Pour or ladle the jelly into a hot jar, leaving 1/4 inch of head space.
  10. Wipe jar rim, place lids and rings.
  11. Process for 10 minutes.
  12. When processing time is finished, remove canner lid and wait 5 minutes.
  13. Remove jars and allow them to cool.
  14. All jars should seal. If they don’t seal, place them in the fridge and eat them soon.

 

Thai Hot & Sweet Dipping Sauce.

Lots of garlic and hot pepper flakes!

Lots of garlic and hot pepper flakes!

I love to make homemade spring rolls (whether plain or deep fried) and this is the perfect sauce to dip them in! Just the right amount of heat, just the right amount of sweet.

Here’s the recipe:

Thai Hot & Sweet Dipping Sauce

Makes 8 half pints

1/2 cup finely chopped garlic
1 T. salt
6 cups cider vinegar
6 cups sugar
1/2 cup hot pepper flakes

Directions:

  1. Combine the chopped garlic and salt in a bowl and set aside.
  2. In a stainless steel saucepan, bring the vinegar to a boil.  After the vinegar comes to a boil add the sugar and stir until dissolved.
  3. Turn down the heat and simmer for five minutes. Remove the vinegar from heat and stir in both the garlic mixture and the pepper flakes, stir to combine.
  4. Stirring frequently, ladle sauce into jars, leaving about 1/2 inch head space.  Remove air bubbles and add more liquid if needed.
  5. Wipe rims with clean cloth. Place lids and rings.
  6. Process for 15 minutes.

 

Caramel Apple Jam.

Look at that gooey goodness!

Look at that gooey goodness!

This is the season for apples. Hoooboy, is it ever. And while you can always make apple sauce or apple butter (recipes later!) there’s something nice about making a gooey, caramel jam out of them.

Here’s the recipe:

Caramel Apple Jam
Makes 5 half pints. 
6 cups diced peeled apples (tart and sweet in combo)
1/2 cup water
1 package powdered fruit pectin
2 cups cane sugar
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

  1. In a heavy pot, combine the apples and water. Cook and stir over low heat until apples are soft.
  2. Stir in pectin and bring to a rolling boil, stirring constantly.
  3. In a bowl while you are waiting for the rolling boil, measure the sugars and spices.
  4. Add the measured ingredients and return to a rolling boil. Boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
  5. Mash or use an immersion blender if there are bits of apple that have not cooked down into the jam.
  6. Remove from the heat and ladle hot jam into hot sterilized jars, leaving 1/4-in. headspace.
  7. Process for 10 minutes in a water bath at a full boil.

 

Habanero Pepper Jelly.

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Hot and sweet!

You can put this jelly on toast, on panini, on crackers-with-cheese, or you can eat it on a spoon. Sweet but with a major kick from the hot, hot habanero peppers!

Here’s the recipe:

Hot Pepper Jelly 

Makes 7 half pints.

2 1/2 cups finely chopped red  habanero peppers
1 small sweet bell pepper finely chopped
1 1/2 cup white vinegar (5% acidity)
6 cups sugar
1/2 teaspoon butter (this reduces foam)
6 oz liquid pectin

Directions:

  1. Coarsely chop peppers with seeds and place in blender with vinegar, sugar and pulse to mix well.
  2. Transfer to pot, add butter and bring to a rolling boil for 1 minute. Cook for 5 minutes at a steady boil.
  3. Quickly add pectin and stir. Allow mixture to return to a boil and cook for 3 more minutes stirring a few times.
  4. Remove from heat and skim off any foam.
  5. Put into half pint jars and seal in water bath for 10 minutes.