Monday, January 31, 2011

winter canning

Canning is for the summer, when produce is abundant, and winter is for cracking open jars and seeing what you can make with their contents. It has been nice, though, while our little house struggles to maintain a temperature in the 50s and the air is so dry our skin is cracking, to make stock and beans and pressure can them. It makes me happy to see the windows all steamed up (my sinuses appreciate it, too).

I suppose it makes sense to make stock in the winter, and I'm trying to (no pun intended) stock up on it so I don't have to be boiling vats in the hot, humid summer. In the summer I can toss kitchen scraps into the compost and they melt down to nothing in a few days, whereas now the compost bins are full to the top, frozen solid, and not composting. Oh, to have a real compost bin that stays hot in the middle.


Yesterday I also noticed a huge bag of carrots from the farmer's market that's been in the fridge drawer for well over a month now. One was gooey already so I thought I'd try and use some up. I ended up making a recipe for pickled carrots from the smitten kitchen website, and went ahead and jarred them for convenience.

carrot sticks

I didn't bother to process them in a hot water bath since it's only a pint and a half pint, and they should keep in the fridge for quite a while. If we like the taste, this can go into the rotation for things to make and put up next fall.

carrot pickles

Pickled Carrot Sticks
Adapted from Gourmet Magazine

1 pound carrots, cut into 3 1/2- by 1/3-inch sticks
1 1/4 cups water
1 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
2 garlic cloves, lightly crushed
1 1/2 tablespoons dill seeds
1 1/2 tablespoons salt

Place carrots in a heatproof bowl. Bring remaining ingredients to a boil in saucepan, then reduce heat and simmer 2 minutes. Pour pickling liquid over carrots and cool, uncovered. Chill carrots, covered, at least 1 day for flavors to develop.

Carrots keep, chilled in an airtight container, 1 month.


Kris at GRS said...

Hi Sarah,
How did you like your pickled carrot recipe? My hubby likes the jalapeno aspect of the ones I do but I think your recipe looks very tasty!

Sarah said...

It's definitely more dill-y, and you have to like the flavor of carrots. I think I'll try your spicy recipe my next time around.