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Chelsea Green Blog

Get Pickled: Canning Makes a Comeback

If you’re a fan of living, probiotic superfoods like yogurt, kimchee, or any number of pickled vegetables, this article’s for you. Vancouver’s Straight.com offers a few tips on canning fermented foods for yourself and your loved ones, and gives a much-appreciated shout-out to two of our DIY guides for the budget gourmand: Preserving Food Without Freezing or Canning: by the farmers and gardeners of Terre Vivante and Wild Fermentation: by Sandor Katz.
Self-described “food geek” Andrea Potter is the queen of cool canning in Vancouver. But as innovative, hip things often do, it started by accident. “I made this raspberry coulis at a restaurant I was working at,” she told the Georgia Straight. “After a few days, it got kind of fizzy. I thought it was lovely, kind of neat-tasting. But the chef said, ‘That’s rancid! Throw it out.’ That’s when I started learning about aged sausages, sourdough bread, miso, sauerkraut, and I really got into this book.” The book she’s referring to is Wild Fermentation: the Flavour, Nutrition, and Craft of Live-Culture Foods (Chelsea Green, 2003). For those who are part of the burgeoning DIY foodie culture, it’s a paperback bible on the 21st-century version of home-based food preservation. As the head chef at Radha Yoga & Eatery, Potter’s got the food-safety background to responsibly lead a new revolution of an old craft. Fermenting, she said, looks a lot like old-style canning. But instead of an OCD-like focus on sterilized jars, she claims that a finger straying into a jar of ginger beer won’t kill off your nearest and dearest. In addition, unlike regular canning, in which food is boiled until all bacteria—good and bad—die, fermenting means food is still alive with enzymes, probiotic bacteria, and other goodies. Potter claims her kombucha (a fermented tea) can “battle pathogens”. […] For those with limited patience, an easy way of preserving fruit is to dump booze on it. The basic technique is to start with a clean jar, layer fruit and white sugar in equal amounts, pour rum or another type of alcohol over the whole thing, and twist on a lid. Voilà—totally doable in a condo kitchen. (For detailed instructions, check out Preserving Food Without Freezing or Canning: Traditional Techniques Using Salt, Oil, Sugar, Alcohol, Vinegar, Drying, Cold Storage, and Lactic Fermentation [Chelsea Green, 2007].) For Potter and McDonald, with the best of the region’s produce bursting into markets and stores, canning is as relevant today as ever. Plus, a can made in July is one less present to buy come December.
Read the whole article here.


Recipe: How to Make the Perfect Pancake

When most people think pancakes, they think breakfast. But for Amy Halloran, breakfast is only the start. Halloran, author of The New Bread Basket, is a self-described pancake connoisseur. From a young age, she was entranced by the magic of bubbly batter rising to fluffy cakes on the griddle. Over time, her love of pancakes […] Read More..

What in the World is a Pawpaw?

Have you heard of the pawpaw? A few generations ago, most would say “yes!” You could ask just about anyone and they could tell you what this fruit looked and tasted like, and more importantly, where to find it. But today, the pawpaw remains a mystery to some and entirely unknown to others. In Pawpaw: […] Read More..

5 Creative Summer Drinks to Help You Cool Off

Now that we’re in the “dog days” of summer, the heat can feel a little unrelenting. There’s no better way to cool off than with a refreshing, cold beverage – especially when that beverage is made with local, organic ingredients and can give you an added health boost! While our experienced foragers and nutrition experts […] Read More..

Beat the Heat and Be Good to Your Gut: Dairy-Free Ice Cream Recipes

Recent research has shown that the trillions of microbes living in our gut, also known as our microbiome, can affect both our brain function and our mood and can be linked to a number of disorders ranging from allergies and asthma to autism, ADD, depression, and more. What we ingest can either help or hurt […] Read More..

Inside the Rise of the Local Grains Movement

Our daily bread. Breaking bread together. Bread and butter. These are all common phrases that reflect bread’s foundational role in our diet and in the building of our civilization. The stored energy of grain first allowed our ancestors to shift from nomadic hunting and gathering to building settled communities—even great cities. So why in an […] Read More..