A new year, a new city, new apartments and new schools or jobs mean new pantries to set up for those near and dear to me. I also refill a couple of pantries at holiday time and give many homemade gifts. Luckily for all of us, 2010 was a bounteous year, as I participated enthusiastically in the Tigress Can Jam every month, often preserving several items in the monthly theme. Plus it was a great growing year locally. After the tomato blight of 2009, I am finally satisfied that we have enough tomatoes in the larder until the next fruit is ripening on the vine.
I did a lot of experimenting this past year, learning new techniques and trying new ingredients, which translated into many batches of only 2-4 jars each. I’m scared to count but I bet there are as many different varieties as weeks in a year. Because of small-batching, some of the greatest hits – the strawberry-currant jam, “rhu-barbeque” sauce, curried onion relish and apricot lavender jam – didn’t last the summer, and the pear-chestnut jam and spicy plum sauce were mostly depleted during the holidays.
This particular portable pantry included: 3 salsas (ancho pepper, peach and tomatillo), bread & butter pickles, pickled asparagus, curried corn relish, cherries in wine sauce, 3 tomato sauces (tomato shallot, Amish Paste tomatoes with onion and garlic, and Plum Dandy with marjoram), 2 ketchups (sweet tomato with ginger and lime, and tomato “harissa” sauce), multiple jams (plum with tonka bean, black fig, orange-fig, yellow zucchini with ginger and lime, peach butterscotch, sweet-hot chili pepper), 2 marmalades (orange and quince), and lemon basil jelly.
Many of the recipes are on my blog. Check out the categories Preserving and Tigress Can Jam.