Canning cookbooks are one of my favorite things to receive for review – and are some of the few books I keep in my library. Preservation Society Home Preserves: 100 Modern Recipes didn’t disappoint. If you are looking for modern and creative twists on canning, this is the book to pick up. As a bonus, the recipes are small-batch canning, which means you get a single pots worth of goodies, and can make up a recipe and be done in a just a few hours – not an all night canning-thon!
While I had so many choices to choose from, I ended up going with spiced pickled raisins…because, why not? It sounded really different and fun.
Pickled Raisins (As adapted from pages 118-119)
- 2¼ cups cider vinegar
- 1½ cups water
- 2 tsp kosher or pickling salt
- 1.8 pounds golden raisins (5¼ cups)
- 1 2″ sprig fresh rosemary
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- ½ tsp hot pepper flakes
- ¼ tsp allspice berries
In a large pot, combine the vinegar, water and salt. Bring to a boil over high heat. Remove from hat and add raisins. Cover and let stand until the raisins are quite plump, about 1 hour.
Meanwhile, wash canning jars, with bands and new lids, in hot, soapy water. Rinse well, and drain on a clean kitchen towel. Bring a large pot of water to boil, take off stove, add in clean jars and keep covered.
Fill canning pot halfway with water, bring to a near boil, then let simmer.
Drain jars using tongs, place on a clean kitchen towel.
Add rosemary, bay leaves, mustard seeds, hot pepper flakes and allspice to the hot jars, then, using a slotted spoon, fill the jars with raisins, leaving a generous ½” headspace.
Bring the brine back to a boil. Pour hot brine into jars to within ½” of the rim.Remove any air bubbles, add more brine if necessary, dip a clean paper towel in hot water, then run around the top of each jar. Place a lid on each jar, then a band, screw on finger tight.
Turn canner up to high, place jars in water bath rack, lower rack into water. Water should cover by 1 – 2″, if not add a bit more from the other pot that held the jars. Bring to a rolling boil, covered, process for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat, carefully remove jars, placing on a clean dry kitchen towel to cool.
Once cooled, check again that seals are down (you should hear the Ping! as each one seals). Gently remove bands (wash, dry and store for your next project. While they look nicer on, if they have water inside from processing, they can rust. If you are giving away your canned items, you can always slip one back on), note on jar or lid what is in jar with a date. Store in a dry/cool/dark area and use within a year.
As always, if you ever go to use a canned item and the lid is not sealed anymore, or bulging, discard it immediately!!!!!! (I have only ever lost one jar in all my canning, so don’t fret!)
FTC Disclaimer: We received a review copy.