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Giveaway: Smooth Sided and Mini Jars from Ball Canning

Ponder your goals for the 2017 canning season and enter to win new storage and canning jars from Ball Canning!

Already today, we’ve talked a little bit about some of the canning and preserving we’re going to be doing together in the coming year (have you signed up for the Food in Jars Mastery Challenge yet?). Now, let’s talk in more detail about how we’re going to do it.

It takes thought and preparation to expand skill set and I find that there’s no better time to do a little planning for learning and growth than at the very start of fresh new year. Whether you’re a goal setter or a resolution maker, now is the time to start lining up our intentions.

Here are a few questions to start with as you dream up what you want to get out of your food preservation practice this year and how you want to shape the Mastery Challenge to work for you.

How does my family currently eat? Try starting with some small changes that will allow you to incorporate more homemade foods into your current habits and patterns.

What’s something I buy regularly from the store? If you find yourself picking up barbecue sauce or strawberry jam, consider setting a goal of making enough to get you through the year!

Is there something that scares me about food preservation? What can you do to release those fears?

What brings me joy in the kitchen? Not every goal has to be about pushing forward. Sometimes it’s enough to make time and space simply to do the things you already love.

How can I make my food preservation habit flow better? Sometimes all you need to do it put your gear in a more accessible part of your kitchen. Or perhaps you need to keep an eye out for a different canning pot. Knowing what you need is so much of the battle!

What do I want my kitchen life to look like this time next year? Sometimes the best way to set a goal is to look at where you want to end up and then plot a course that gets you there (or at least, that gets you closer).

Now, most food preservation goals will, at some point, arrive at the topic of jars. And it just happens that our friends at Ball Canning have recently added some new jars to their product line. In the spirit of helping a few Food in Jars readers further their food preservation goals, I’m giving away some of these new, lovely jars.

Three winners will each get a set of the new Ball Mini Storage Jars (these sweet little jars hold 4 ounces and sport 1-piece lids), a case of the new Ball Smooth-Sided Regular Mouth Pints, and a case of the Ball Smooth-Sided Regular Mouth Quarts.

Use the widget to enter!

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Giveaway: EcoJarz PopTop and Jar Band Gripper

Let’s chat about our friends over at EcoJarz! They make a wide variety of jar accessories out of high quality stainless steel and sturdy silicone. I rely on their stainless steel band when fermenting in mason jars (because it doesn’t rust or corrode like the conventional bands) and have been known to take my Dose (a little jar-based pour over coffee set-up) on vacation with me to help meet my caffeine needs.

The nice folks at EcoJarz offered up three sets of their PopTop lid, along with a wide mouth stainless steel band, and a silicone Jar Band Gripper (which snugs onto the band, making it easier to twist off when it’s time to clean out the jar) for this week’s giveaway. This drink topper is easy to use and is the perfect thing if you find yourself on the move with a smoothie or a big jar of water.

To enter the giveaway, use the widget below. However, if you think this topper would make a great gift for someone on your list and you don’t want to wait and see who wins the giveaway, use the coupon FOODINJARS2016 to get 20% off your order. Enjoy!

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Giveaway: The Art of Aperitivo Set from reCAP Mason Jars

Celebrate the goodness of cocktails, ferments, and life with The Art of Aperitivo Gift Set from reCAP Mason Jars!

art-of-aperitivo-box

I first discovered reCAP Mason Jars back in late 2011, when they were running the Kickstarter for their original easy open, spouted lid. In the years since they introduced that original reCAP lid, they’ve continually expanded their line of lids and adaptors so that jars of all shapes and sizes can become even more useful in and around your home. I’m always excited to see what they’ll do next!

interior-of-art-of-aperitivo

The latest item in their line of jar-centric goodies is The Art of Aperitivo: Italian Happy Hour Gift Set. This highly giftable box comes filled with jars, lids, a waterless airlock, and other goodies to help you treat your friends and family to homemade cocktails and fermented nibbles. It’s the perfect way to lift spirits and brighten the dark nights of winter.

jars-from-art-of-aperitivo

The three jars that come with the set are from Italian glass maker Bormioli Rocco Quattro Stagioni line. You’ll get a wide mouth 51 ounce jar, a regular mouth 17 ounce jar, and a regular mouth 10 ounce jar. They come with two original reCAP lids and the newer reCAP FLIP lid so that you can easily access whatever you choose to stash in the jars.

flip-tops-from-art-of-aperitivo

You’l also find a waterless airlock that fits perfectly into the open spout of the reCAP lid. This allows you to transform any jar into a fermentation crock. Use it to make a batch of Jar-diniera, a recipe that’s featured into the handy booklet that comes with the kit.

other-art-of-aperitivo-materials

The Art of Aperitivo set would make a great gift for anyone who likes to make cocktails, serve up fermented foods, and have their friends over to enjoy them both! I have one of these handy sets to give away this week. Use the widget below to enter!

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Disclosure: reCAP Mason Jar provided the unit you see above at no cost to me and are also providing the giveaway unit. No other payment was provided and all opinions expressed here are entirely mine.

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Giveaway: Lids and Jar Sleeves from Intelligent Lids

Looking for storage lids that are liquid and air tight? Want a one-piece drink lid for your mason jar? In need of a cute, waste-free jar sleeves in which to wrap your jars for giving? Look no further than Intelligent Lids!

intelligent-lids-new-packaging

Back in the days when I worked in an office, I transported a lot of my food to work in mason jars. I’d pack yogurt and jam in a wide mouth half pint. I’d have my coffee in the three-cup capacity pint & half. And my lunchtime soup would be in a regular mouth pint (I always kept a bowl at my desk, into which I’d decant the soup for the microwave).

intelligent-lid-jar-sleeves-label

There were two primary challenges to all these jars. The first was that options for one-piece lids that didn’t leak were scarce. The second was that I had to carefully wrap my jars in dish towels to keep them upright and unbroken in my lunch bag (the totes from A Tiny Forest would have been so useful back then).

Colorful fabric jar sleeves from Intelligent Lids

Happily, there are so many more options for jar lids and sleeves these days. Some of the best are coming from the folks at Intelligent Lids in Seattle. They make one-piece drink and storage lids, and just recently added a line of colorful, fabric jar sleeves to their product line (they’re not up on the website yet, but should be soon!).

Drink lid from Intelligent Lids on a wide mouth pint jar

The drink lids have a slider so that you can open and close the opening. The one-piece storage lids are truly liquid and air tight. They are my preferred storage lids for things that absolutely cannot leak or get stale. Plus, they come in an array of bright colors, which I really enjoy.

The jar sleeves are designed as a fabric bag that cinches at the top, so that they’ll fit both regular and wide mouth jars. In addition serving as insulator, breakage preventer, or hand protector, you can also use them as a cute, waste-free wrapping for jars that you’re giving as a gift.

intelligent-lid-jar-sleeves

For this week’s giveaway, I have two lid and sleeve sets from the folks at Intelligent Lids to share with you guys. Each set includes a drink lid, a storage lid, and a sleeve. The winners will get to choose between regular and wide mouth lids, and pint or quart sized sleeves.

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Disclosure: Intelligent Lids sent me the product you see pictured here. All opinions expressed remain entirely my own.

Giveaway: EcoJarz Fermenting Kit

ecojarz-fermentation-kit

Hello friends! I hope you all had a lovely weekend! I’ve been in Ireland for the last week, having all sorts of adventures (and I’ve amassed quite a collection of European canning gear that I’ll show you in an upcoming post). However, I’m dropping in from my vacation to post this week’s giveaway.

ecojarz-kit-with-guide

This one comes to us from the folks at EcoJarz. They recently added a nifty fermenting kit to their online shop, and it’s a terrific one for those of us who like to use our canning jars for small batch ferments.

black-radishes

The kit comes with a stainless steel ring (which will not rust or corrode like the conventional ones), a flat lid drilled with a hole and fitted with a silicone grommet, three-piece airlock, and a handy little fermenting guide that covers all the basics.

radish-slices

Just before I left on my trip, I used my EcoJarz fermenting kit to transform some gorgeous black radishes (a gift from one of the farmer vendors at the Antietam Valley Farmers Market) into tasty, tangy pickles. I made a brine using 2 tablespoons finely milled salt and four cups of filtered water.

Once the salt was dissolved, I sliced the radishes, packed them into a jar, and covered them with the brine. A few days later, once the liquid had gone tart, they were done.

black-radish-slices-fermenting

Three lucky Food in Jars readers will each win one of these fermenting kits. Use the widget below to enter!

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Baked Penne, Broccoli, and Ricotta + Lagostina Martellata Pasta Set Giveaway

A tasty pasta dish and a fabulous Lagostina Pasta Pot giveaway! Best National Pasta Day ever!

lagostina-pasta-pot

Happy National Pasta Day, friends! In honor of today’s holiday, I have a fabulous giveaway from the nice folks at Lagostina (you might remember them from this post last December, when I gave away this snazzy Risotto Pan).

broccoli-pasta-ingredients

One of you will win this truly gorgeous Lagostina Martellata Hammered Copper Pastaiola Set. I’ve had the one pictured above in my kitchen for about a month now, and I can’t say enough good things about it. It’s functional, conducts heat beautifully, and may well be the most beautiful piece of cookware in my kitchen.

chopped-broccoli

I’ve used it for all manner of blanching, steaming, and cooking by now (it also happens to work well as a canning pot for half pint jars!) and have taken to leaving it on the stove between uses, because I so enjoy seeing it there in all its gleaming glory.

blanching-broccoli

The recipe I’m sharing with you today puts this pot to work twice. First, I use it to blanch off a bunch of chopped broccoli. Once it’s cooked, I use the same water to cook the whole wheat penne.

cooked-broccoli

While the broccoli cooks, I browned some chicken sausage in a little olive oil and then drained it on a plate. Once the broccoli is bright green and tender, it gets drained and poured into the pan where the sausage had cooked.

From there, it’s a matter of building a sauce of pressed garlic and ricotta cheese. I wrap it up by adding the cooked sausage back in, along with the pasta, a healthy splash of pasta water, and a generous handful of grated parmesan cheese.

cooked-pasta

I love having a petite pasta pot like this one in my kitchen, because it allows me to stay at the stove, rather than dripping water between the sink and the stove. I’ve long had a larger pasta pot, but rarely pulled it out because it was just too much for my regular weeknight cooking. This one is just so much more functional for my household.

finished-broccoli-and-pasta

The Lagostina Martellata Hammered Copper Pastaiola Set can be found at Bed Bath & Beyond, Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s, and other specialty shops, and retails for $249.99. For more information about Lagostina, check out their social accounts and visit their website.

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

lagostina-handle

Thanks to the kind folks at Lagostina, I have one of these glorious pasta pots to give away to you guys. Here’s how to enter.

  1. Leave a comment on this post and tell me how you’d use this pot.
  2. Comments will close at 11:59 pm eastern time on Saturday, October 22, 2016. A winner will be chosen at random and will be posted to the blog on Sunday, October 23, 2016.
  3. Giveaway open to United States residents only. Void where prohibited.
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left via the comment form on the blog at the bottom of this post.

Disclosure: Lagostina sent me this pasta pot to use and write about. No additional compensation was provided. All opinions expressed are entirely my own. 

Baked Penne, Broccoli, and Ricotta

Yield: serves 4-6

Ingredients

  • 1 pound broccoli florets and stems, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 pound chicken sausage
  • 12 ounces short whole wheat pasta
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 2 garlic cloves, pressed or minced
  • 3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

Instructions

  1. Fill a pasta pot with water and bring it to a boil. Once it boils, salt the water well and add the broccoli. Cook for 3-4 minutes, until it turns a vivid green.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Remove the chicken sausage from its casing and brown in the pan, using a spatula to break it up into crumbles. Once it is brown, use a slotted spoon and transfer the cooked pasta onto a paper towel-lined plate.
  3. Tumble the cooked broccoli into the pan that had once held the sausage and reduce the heat to medium. Bring the water in the pasta pot back to a boil and add the pasta.
  4. Add the garlic to the broccoli, along with the ricotta cheese and the drained sausage. Stir to combine.
  5. When the pasta is finished cooking, drain it and pour it into the pan with the other ingredients. Stir to combine and add 1/2 cup of grated parmesan cheese, along with 1/2 cup of pasta cooking water.
  6. Season with salt and pepper, and add more pasta water, if it is too thick.
  7. Top with the remaining parmesan cheese. Slide the pan under the broiler to brown the top.
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