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Food Preservation


Food Preservation

How-To's on putting food aside: canning, freezing, drying, much more...

Location: North Carolina
Members: 445
Latest Activity: Aug 13, 2017

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Comment Wall

Comment by Harriet Fasenfest on July 3, 2011 at 9:54am
Pig Newtons - funny as hell.  But here is where the cookery side of my life will come out.  First - I would advise when making "fig newtons" (because I have) that you start with dried figs that are then soaked a bit in some liquid (I used a bit of heated brandy overnight but you can use kool-aid if it fits your sensibilities) so they will reconstitute a bit but still keep their dense quality.  I then puree them in a food processor.  What you get is a very thick and workable mixture that will be much easier to roll in the crust than fig jam (okay, I must say this now though I have been wanting to for some time but prudence, go figure, got the best of me.  F.I.G. J.A.M --- F*&k I'm Good Just Ask Me).  As for the piggy part, if you must and it might well be good, you can use some lard (rendered from the kidney fat - yes, I have and do have some in the fridge) in the crust to give it a savory piggy flavor.  As I write this I think adding some herb like a bit of thyme somewhere in the mix might be nice and maybe some orange rind in with the pureed fig and, well, you get the idea.  In The Italian Baker Cookbook (author's name escapes me and I'm not getting out of bed yet to check the name) there is a recipe for a sicilian fig cookie that is just the ticket.  I have used that recipe and it is spot on.  So that is my cookery response to your very good idea.   I mean, it ain't just what we put in the pantry that matters it is what we do with it.  On both accounts I can get pretty fussy.
Comment by Pat Johnson on July 3, 2011 at 3:26pm
Good advice on the dried figs. I just dehydrated some of them so will use them instead of the jam. I didn't dry the heck out of em so they may actually be pretty close to the right consistancy when I puree them. The Bacon Jam is already pretty stiff cause I cooked it down pretty good. We'll see. "F.I.G.J.A.M."....only you Harriet, only you!
Comment by Christene on July 4, 2011 at 8:28am
Help I was given cucumber for bread and butter pickles but the recipe calls for canning salt.  I have table, sea and kosher do I have what I need or do I have to go to the store on the 4th.
Comment by Pat Johnson on July 4, 2011 at 9:08am
If you can't get to the store I would choose the Kosher salt and go ahead. As long as the preserving medium is vinegar based the salt is for taste as opposed to its preserving qualities. I would urge you to look up the subject and aquire an understanding of the reason canning/pickling salt is listed in all canning recipes.
Comment by Pat Johnson on July 6, 2011 at 9:53am
The following link provides a brief history of Canning Jars. It also talks about the new "Chinese" jars that are showing up on the shelves of some American stores. Hopefully Jardan is still making their jars in the good old US of A. I think I'll stick to them until I hear differently.
Comment by Kristin Eggerth on July 6, 2011 at 4:04pm
Looking for refrigerator pickle recipes and watermelon rind ones too. Please help!!  Hehe.
Comment by Harriet Fasenfest on July 6, 2011 at 5:17pm
Sorry K, I'm on the run and anyway, I would have to look in a book.  Do you have any basic books on food preservation?  What they will teach you is process and you, when you get good, will add the ingredients.  At the start, recipes supply you their ingredients with the process being constant -- that is a certain proportion vinegar to water etc. etc.  Your ingredients will be what makes it signature. I hope I'm making sense but the short story is pick up a book.  Or, someone might show up and give you a recipe but.....
Comment by Bonnie on July 6, 2011 at 6:21pm
On foodnetwork.com Alton Brown has some awesome recipes for refrigerator pickles here and here. I make them all the time--yum!
Comment by Maxine Cook on July 6, 2011 at 10:19pm

Recipe for Kristin - Refrigerator Pickles - these are delicious; let me know how they turned out.......


Max’s Pickles – Crispy Refrigerator ( no cook-no canning type)

1 tsp. Turmeric

1 tsp. Mustard Seed

1 tsp. Celery Seed       

1 tsp Alum

¼ tsp. dried dill (I use fresh dill sprigs if I have them growing in the garden)

3 cups white vinegar

3-1/2 cups sugar

1/3 cup canning salt (I use kosher salt)

1+ cloves garlic (optional)

Thinly sliced onion

Thinly sliced cucumbers


Note:  You can use a 1-gallon jar for these. However, you can also use quart canning jars or even pint canning jars.


Fill jar(s) with thinly sliced onions and cucumbers. Mix together spices with vinegar, sugar, salt and garlic. Make sure that sugar & salt are completely dissolved in vinegar. Pour liquid mixture over cucumbers & onions and keep jars in the refrigerator for 7 days before using.  Shake the jars of pickles daily for the 7 days before using. Pickles will keep in the fridge for at least 6 months! Enjoy!!!

(Note: I save the 'pickle juice' as I use up each jar and just add more fresh sliced cukes and onions!)

Comment by Linda Ziedrich on July 7, 2011 at 6:22pm
Upon reading Pat's message regarding Chinese-made canning jars, I checked with Penley Corporation, the manufacturer discussed in the blog post to which Pat provided a link. I found out that Penley no longer makes canning jars. In fact, Penley has been bought by Jarden, the maker of Ball and Kerr jars!


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