Canning & Preserving

tomatoes in bags

Host Your Own Tomato Crush

It’s Tomato Time! Like many others, I put up tomatoes in late September. I’m republishing an article originally from 2014 on how to host your own tomato crush. Why not share the work and turn a chore into a social occasion? This year, I’m working with a friend, and we’ll

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Sous vide pickles 1200

Sous Vide Pickles

You may think I’ve gone completely crazy with my Anova Precision Cooker (ie my sous-vide immersion circulator). Sous-vide pickles? Really? I assure you, I haven’t gone nuts, and sous-vide pickles are really a thing. A good thing! They’re crisper. I learned why my pickles weren’t quite as crispy as I

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quick refrigerator pickles

Quick Refrigerator Pickles

We’re a pickle family – every one of us likes pickles on sandwiches and burgers. I do make traditional pickles, both dill and bread & butter type. It can be a whole big production. Start by finding the right little (Kirby) cucumbers, then cleaning and slice them. Stuff them into

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tomatoes in baskets

Homemade Tomato Paste

Why make homemade tomato paste when it’s always available at the grocery store? I use tomato paste all the time. Sometimes I need up to half a cup, and sometimes just a little bit. When I make my own, I can store it in the sizes I tend to need most, so I have

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tomato paste

Tomato Paste in the Slow Cooker

Tomato paste is, in principle, an easy thing: squish the tomatoes, separate the skins and the seeds, and reduce the resulting pulp until it’s very thick. I have already posted a Roasted Tomato Paste recipe – here’s a version using a slow cooker or two, for when you can’t stand

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roasted tomato paste

Roasted Tomato Paste

I use tomato paste all the time. Sometimes I need up to half a cup, sometimes just a little bit. When I make my own, I can store it in the sizes I tend to need most, so I have no more partly used cans in the fridge. Sometimes I have a huge batch

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peach oolong jam 1200

Small-batch Peach-Oolong Jam

This small-batch peach-oolong jam with subtle notes of a good oolong tea is excellent with toast or scones. I wanted to capture the taste of with a thicker texture. This one’s a winner! I use sugar to draw juice from the peaches, add tea, cook the resulting mixture, and then puree it all with an immersion

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Smooth Cherry Jam | Get the Good Stuff

Smooth Cherry Jam

Cherries DO have enough pectin to set a jam, if you’re willing to chop the fruit finely. This smooth cherry jam starts with unpitted cherries to make the process even easier. Start by putting the cherries in a heavy pot, and crush them with a potato masher. Use a tall

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chive blossom vinegar

Chive Blossom Vinegar

Do you grow chives? If you have a bit of garden, chives are one of the easiest herbs to grow, and one of the first to come up in the spring. In my garden plot, I’ll see them first appear in early May, Just about the time I’m longing for something fresh and green, I

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pickled green tomatoes

Pickled Green Tomatoes

You may already be familiar with pickled green tomatoes – they are common in many New York delis. However, if you’re one of those folks whose understanding of pickles is limited to cucumbers, try these! This is the time of year when gardeners race the frosts to harvest every possible

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Green Tomatoes

Green Tomato Chutney

I’m still working to use up the half-bushel of green tomatoes stripped from one single row of dying vines at the farm. This recipe originates with Marisa McClellan’s splendid book Food in Jars I wanted to avoid the hour-and-a-half of stirring, while the mixture reduced, so I decided to try out a

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Applesauce 1200

Easy Applesauce

Now that cool weather has arrived, it’s time to work on apples. Local orchards have bushels of fruit begging for my attention. I put up applesauce every year: it stores well, can be used in lots of ways, and is surprisingly easy. I like to use a variety of sweet and

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Welcome

I’m Maurita Plouff, and I write about cooking and preserving the local harvest in Southeast Michigan. Any recipe you find here is something I have cooked myself, and enjoyed, and think you might like too. I invite you to try the recipes, and leave comments.

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