Saturday, April 5, 2014

Let's Try Something New, Shall We

Well, new to me at least.  I love making new things in the way of food and knowing how to make my own ________ (fill in the blank); and, even better, knowing exactly what the ingredients are. 

For instance, grinding my own grain to make bread (courtesy of Bread Beckers. They have a great web site: breadbeckers.com ),




making my own yogurt (from raw milk), or growing micro-greens.



While in this mind-set I stumbled across two beautiful cookbooks.  


Thumbing through their pages, enjoying the photography; reading the stories about gardening, and preparing spring and summer vegetables I discovered two things I had never tried -  "Preserving Lemons" and making "Raspberry Vinegar".  I immediately thought of all the possibilities with the end product - dressings for salads, marinades for meats and fish, and the sauces.

You need to know the when preparing them the results are not immediate they both must sit for about two weeks.  On the up-side the preparation is simple.

Preserved Lemons
ingredients:
2 1 qt. mason jars
12 lemons (approximately)
2 containers of sea salt (I think they are about 1lb)
boiling water

1. wash your lemons
2. Squeeze enough lemons to make 1 1/4 cups juice
3. Split the remaining lemons (and you made need a few extra to fill the jars depending on how big your lemons are) into quarters, leaving enough at the bottom intact to hold the quarters together.
4. Fill the insides of the cut lemons with salt
5. Divide the lemons and the lemon juice between the 2 jars
6. Then sprinkle generous amounts of sea salt into the jars and fill the jars the rest of the way with boiling water
7.  Put the lids on tightly and let the jars sit in a dark place for about 3 weeks.
8.  In the course of the 3 weeks - shake them once in a while

 
  Raspberry Vinegar

ingredients:
1 1/2 cups raspberries
2 cups white wine vinegar
1/3 cup superfine sugar (this comes later)
(yield: 2 cups)

1. Pour raspberries in jar
2. Pour in the vinegar
3. Cover tightly with lid and let stand at room temperature for 2 weeks.
4.  Once in a while press the raspberries against the side of the jar with a spoon to release the juice.  

After 2 weeks:
1. Place a sieve over a saucepan and pour the raspberries and vinegar into the pan.  Use a spoon to gently press down the raspberries to drain all the juice from them (do not press down too hard or the vinegar will be cloudy.

2. Next add the sugar to the vinegar.  
3. Slowly bring the mixture to a near boiling.  Stirring to dissolve the sugar.
4. Pour the vinegar into clean glass bottles (there are pretty ones at the Container Store) and seal them with a cork or a lid.
5. These keep in the pantry for about 6 months.

Mine are still in the waiting stage.  When they are ready I will bring you recipes on different uses.  I am very excited and can hardly wait til they are ready!!!!

Thanks For Reading,
&

Happy Spring!