Jars and Jars and… More Jars

Christmas Jars

Over the past few years, I’ve started to really, really love preparing food.  I love feeding new culinary treats to my family, I loved working in a commercial kitchen, and I LOVE seeing what magical things can be created by canning.  Canning is more than just putting up food for later – it’s a way to get in touch with how food used to be.  When frozen blueberries weren’t available year-round, when apples weren’t trucked to a grocery store from hither and yon, when the bright fresh flavors of summer could only be preserved in pint-sized batches…  These things were treats, and people didn’t take them for granted.  When eating is seasonal, tomatoes and strawberries are overwhelmingly abundant in summer, and sorely missed in the dead of winter.  That’s where canning comes in: a bright tomato sauce, a little slather of watermelon jam, a few spears of sweet and spicy pickles, remind of the seasons that were and the seasons to come.

Since my first canning project two years ago (rushing to preserve 18 lbs of sweet, Colorado peaches just a few weeks after my first son was born) to this past summer’s deluge of cucumbers, I’ve loved experimenting with unexpected recipes.  That’s where these three jars come in.  Last Christmas, I created gift boxes of treats for various family members, containing Blueberry Lavender Jam, Fire Carrots, Salted Caramel Apple Butter, Bacon Jam, and Spicy Agave Mustard.  The bacon jam was amazing, but involved so much work and so much bacon for so very little jam.  The spicy agave mustard was–and still is– tasty, but ended up a little thick.

This year, I decided to offer up my favorites for sale, and took in quite a few pre-orders.  After three full days of peeling, slicing, boiling, and packing, the orders are done.  I hope everyone that gets a taste this year enjoys everything as much as we do.

 

Fun With Jars

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