Food tastes so fresh when it gets plucked right from the garden and gets eaten immediately. In January, I can’t wait for summer and the ripe tasting fruits and vegetables. In the summer, I can’t wait to eat what’s growing in the garden or what’s freshly picked. Even though we eat lots of what’s fresh, I want to preserve that splendid taste of summer for those winter months.
I’m willing to work to preserve food but not too hard. It’s summer after all and there’s picnics to pack and trips to go on.
Here’s how I preserve the taste of summer and keep summer eating up all year long…
- Freeze :: By far my favorite and go to method for preserving fruits and herbs is to freeze them. No blanching, just freezing. Find all the details about how I do it with strawberries. Aside from lettuce, I’ll try freezing anything.
- Jam :: Have you ever read the ingredients on the back of a jar of jam or jelly? If so, you’ll see how much sugar and other sweeteners are in there. Skip the store bought and make your own. I promise you will never go back. Use the brand I do – Pomona’s – and the jelling magic will happen without lots of sugar.
- Roast + freeze :: Tomatoes roasted + frozen for sauce and roasted padron peppers are a freezer staple. The tomatoes are the base for pasta sauce year round and the peppers get chopped up and tossed into just about any dish – beans, eggs, pilaf. Anything that needs a kick of flavor gets a padron pepper or two.
- Dehydrate :: Blueberries are humming away right now in the dehydrator. I found mine at a garage sale. Check for one there if you want to buy one. I probably don’t use it often enough but several neighbors have borrowed mine. The fruit tastes delicious and there’s no sugar or oil added when I make it myself.
Easy, no big tricks and no need for lots of special equipment. Try preserving the tastes of summer and eat the goodness all year long.
What’s your favorite way to preserve the taste of summer?