"People are rediscovering the pleasure of the process: the delight of squirreling away locally grown corn, the joy of putting up some of those treasured summer strawberries, the kinky thrill of opening up our own jarred tomatoes in the middle of February."
– Sherri Brooks Vinton in her cookbook Put 'em Up!
In today's marketplace nearly everything is available year-round and yet, "putting up"-the act of canning and food preserving-has experienced a resurgence in popularity that doesn't appear to be a fleeting one. Those who do it promise that it's not long before you're hooked and looking to preserve any and every little last morsel before the season moves on.
With a modern sensibility, canning and food preserving today doesn't have to mean massive amounts of produce to prep and a long, tiring process. The list of reasons to preserve include better taste, quality, affordability, tradition and being planet-friendly among others.
But there's another reason that seals the deal for us.
It makes us feel good-really good-and it's a lasting sort of good that crops up in the middle of winter when there is local, summer-sweetened blackberries in the freezer for adding to oatmeal-or when 6 jars of pickles that were canned with a friend greet you every time you open the cupboard. It makes you feel like you have grabbed the heart of the season and managed to savor it - literally and figuratively.
As Sherri notes above, there's a pleasure in the process and even novice "put 'em uppers" can find simple ways to save the best of the season. This is especially true if you're armed with a book like Sherri's Put ‘em Up!-a truly comprehensive guide that features a complete how-to for every kind of preserving: refrigerating, freezing, canning, pickling and others.
With ingredients calling for as little as a pound or as much as a gallon, Put ‘em Up! is perfect for our Farm Fresh To You CSA members who might, for example, have extra green beans on hand and want to freeze some for winter soups-or the members who can't pass up a good tomato deal at the farmer's market and are thinking salsa!
In the spirit of September, a perfect preserving month, we wanted to stir up a little canning and food preserving talk, and end with a little giveaway. Put ‘em Up seemed like a perfect pick! In addition to answering some of our customer's canning questions on our Facebook wall, Sherri helped us preserve the last bits of summer by giving us a copy of Put ‘em Up to give away.
Here's How to Enter –
To win a signed copy of Sherri Brooks Vinton's Put 'em Up! cookbook, simply leave a comment below answering this question -
Thank you for all the amazing comments! They were so wonderful that we chose TWO WINNERS!What method of food preserving
(canning, fermenting, freezing, drying, pickling, etc.) appeals to you most?
The first winner chosen at random is: The Emery Board who wrote:
I've never tried any of these methods, as I hadn't even thought of using my produce in this way! It excites me greatly, as I just bought a house recently and finally have a kitchen in which I can cook! I think canning sounds like a lot of fun. Whether I win or not, I think I need to start buying some super cute jars!The second winner chosen at random is: Maureen who wrote:
I am interested in learning about all the methods, but I could really use drying for food on sailing trips and am intrigued by fermentation of foods!
EmeryBoard and Maureen - please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your contact information. Thank you again to all who entered - we are enjoying your comments so very much! A big thank you to Sherri Brooks Vinton and be sure to check out Put 'em Up!