Top row: pear butter, smoked salmon, cloudberry jam. Second row: Arctic blueberry jam, cranberry sauce, cloudberry jam. Third row: Arctic blueberry jam, pear butter, smoked salmon.
Small batch canning has become a perfect way to preserve many foods in our Arctic home. We anticipate that this skill will transfer nicely to our galley kitchen aboard the sailing vessel Bandon.
We recently read an article about items that are supposedly “not worth the time to make in your own kitchen.” The three items that topped this rather specious list were yogurt, pasta and jam. Of course, we heartily disagree on each count. The hands-on time for our delicious homemade yogurt is about 15 minutes, and while it takes a little longer to turn out a few servings of pasta, the time invested results in noodles that trump any store-bought variety. And jam can be made between dinnertime and bedtime – including the processing time in the water bath. Knowing where your hand-picked berries and self-harvested salmon come from: priceless. As those in-the-know can attest, the rewards go beyond even that. Our meals are infused with memories of mornings in berry fields as we dip into our jam and of days on water and of the friends we shared fishing experiences with as we open jars of beautifully cured salmon.
Just in time for the holidays, we’ve added ginger pear cranberry sauce to our home-canned collection. We adapted the recipe from Full Circle Farms, which was thoughtfully tucked into a box containing our order of organic cranberries and D’Anjou pears. The spicy ginger and sweet stewed fruit was the perfect complement to roasted turkey.
Ginger Pear Cranberry Sauce
- 7 tbsp brown sugar
- 4 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 ½ tsp powdered ginger
- pinch salt
- 3 firm D’Anjou pears, seeded and cut into ½-inch cubes
- 6 tbsp granulated sugar
- 2 tsp dried lemon zest
- 2 tsp dried orange zest
- 1/3 cup lemon juice
- 1/3 cup orange juice
- ¾ lb organic cranberries
- In a medium saucepan, combine brown sugar, vinegar, ginger, and salt.
- Bring to a boil over moderate heat.
- Add pears. Cover and cook until pears are crisp-tender, about 10 minutes.
- Remove pears with slotted spoon and set aside, leaving liquid in pan.
- Add granulated sugar, zests, juices and cranberries to pan.
- Simmer over medium heat, stirring often, until cranberries pop.
- Reduce heat and add pears back to mixture.
- Cook for at least 5 minutes to allow flavors to mix. Cook longer if a thicker sauce is desired.
Makes about 4 cups of sauce.
Ginger pear cranberry sauce sounds delicious. I’m always looking for new twists on just regular blueberry or strawberry jams. I also totally disagree with yogurt-making being disappointing. In fact I think everyone should know how to make yogurt AND butter.
🙂 Right on!
Waste of time? The writer must be getting bags and bags of money from the pasta, yogurt, and jam industries to afford the good stuff and live in a place where they can find the freshest of each item without all the added crap. Even here in Seward we have a hard time finding decent yogurt that isn’t exorbitantly expensive. Our solution:
We bought a yogurt maker! Oh my Jack does it make the best yogurt ever! No name brand can ever produce anything close to it. We know exactly what goes in it and eat it almost daily.
Future purchase: pasta roller for the kitchen aid.
As for the jam, can the writer buy Alaskan berry jam at the grocery store? No. Will store-bought jam contain pesticide-laden berries and high fructose corn syrup? Yes.
Will the Donachy’s be getting some jam as a Christmas present from the Bixler’s? Maybe :).
Thoughts on making pasta: Get yourself a manual pasta machine first. We have a CucinaPro we like a lot. You have more control of the dough, there is no wasted dough and it uses no electricity. It’s pretty low maintenance, too – you just brush it off when you’re done and put it away. You are never supposed to wash it. That being said, we do like the kitchen aid pasta extruder because we can make tubular pasta like penne and macaroni. The extruder won’t push out all the dough, so there is always some wastage. It’s a little harder to clean and it was a pricey attachment, too.
Thanks for the advice! We have gift cards burning holes in our pockets. I’m sure you will make use of whatever we get this summer.