After the huge success of Marisa McClellan’s blog and cookbook of the same name, Food in Jars, she has returned to bookshelves with a second installment of her canning adventures. Preserving by the Pint is a stunningly photographed tour through the seasons that highlights produce at its peak, and gives beginning canners a way to enjoy their farmer’s market finds throughout the year.
I adore this book. I’m a bit of an obsessive cookbook collector, and Preserving by the Pint has basically everything I look for. The recipes focus on working by season, which is something I really appreciate in my home kitchen. There’s also a great deal of variety when it comes to the types of produce that she highlights. Whether you have a bunch of apples or an abundance of garlic scapes, there is a recipe in this book that will make them awesome.
Another praise I have for Preserving by the Pint is that it’s great for people who are new to preserving. The entire first section is essentially a canning how-to and a list of tools you will need before diving in. And by the way—you don’t need much at all. If you’re a person that enjoys cooking and has a modestly outfitted kitchen, you probably have most of the stuff already. Marisa also does an excellent job of creating recipes with extremely modest yields for the home cook who isn’t trying to make 40 pints of jam. All of her recipes give you totally manageable amounts for people who are canning in smaller urban kitchens. For example, her honey-sweetened strawberry jam recipe is for a single pint. Can’t get a batch much smaller than that.
Oh, and by the way, preserves aren’t just jam and pickles. This book has recipes for walnut pesto, peach barbecue sauce, orange cardamom curd, and whiskey preserved figs. Yep, totally making all of those.
I’m going to be tearing through this book throughout the coming year, but my favorite recipe so far has go to be the ramp greens kimchi. If you have access to the trendy wild leek (make sure they’re harvested sustainably!), you’ve got to whip up a batch of this. And if you don’t know where to get ramps, I highly recommend you befriend a forager. It’s super easy to make and is a complete and utter flavor party.
Ramp Greens Kimchi from Preserving by the Pint
- Makes 1 half-pint jar
- 4 oz ramp greens
- 1 teaspoon finely milled sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Aleppo pepper (I found mine at Penzey’s)
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
- 1 garlic glove, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
Clean the ramp greens well and shake them to remove the water. Collect the greens into a stack and chop into 1-inch/2.5 cm lengths. Place the ramp greens in a medium bowl and add the salt, sugar, Aleppo pepper, ginger, and garlic. Stir until well combined. Add the soy sauce and sesame oil and stir again.
Pack the seasoned ramp greens in a wide-mouth 1-pint/500 ml jar and loosely apply a lid. Let the jar rest at room temperature for 24 hours, then move it to the fridge.
Every day for the next 4 to 5 days, open the jar and stir the ramps with a clean spoon. The kimchi is done when its volume has reduced by half and it smells rich and savory. It will keep in the fridge for up to a month.
You can find Preserving by the Pint and Food in Jars in bookstores everywhere. Don’t forget to check out foodinjars.com for information on future events and canning classes with Marisa, as well as a wealth of canning and preserving recipes.
Recipe reprinted with permission from Preserving by the Pint © 2014 by Marisa McClellan, Running Press, a member of the Perseus Book Group.