Archive | giveaways and winners RSS feed for this section

Links: Small Batches, Granola, and Winners

cherry clafoutis

This past week was on the quieter side of things, filled with the mundane activities of life. I cooked food, taught classes, made jam, filled bags for donation, went to the gym, had dinner with friends, and still managed to get to bed before midnight more often than not. It was a satisfyingly mellow seven days. Now, links!

Whiskey cover - Food in Jars

I’ve got two giveaways to wrap up this week. First is the giveaway of Whiskey. The winner there is #76/Linda C. Second is the giveaway of three copies of my new book. The winners there are #3/Lauren, #38/Holly H., and #503/Karen C.

Congratulations, everyone!

Comments { 1 }

Links: Roasted Carrots, Rhubarb, and a Winner

Date Night In carrots

Friends, thank you all for the lovely birthday wishes. I had a fabulous weekend of celebration and I’m feeling decidedly cheerier about 37 than I was last week.

Now, let me tell you about some phenomenal carrots. When I was in Seattle last month, I had the good fortune to teach a class at The Pantry at Delancey. They’ve recently expanded their space and now have two classrooms. The night I was there, I taught in their newer kitchen, while the very talented Ashley Rodriguez led a class next door, featuring recipes from her book, Date Night In.

At the end of the evening, we swapped leftovers. I offered her team what remained of my spread of jams, pickles, and chutneys, while they made me a plate of roasted carrots with maple and coriander and butter lettuce salad. The salad was excellent, but the carrots were transcendent. The moment I got home, I ordered the book so I could recreate them and I’ve now made them twice in the last ten days.

The trick it to get carrots with their greens and leave an inch or so of the stems intact. They turn crisp in the oven, which just a hint of caramel from the maple syrup. In combination with the tender, slightly blistered carrots, they are my very favorite thing to eat right now. I highly encourage you to get your hands on a copy of this book so you can make them yourselves. They are worth it. Now, links!

Foolproof Preserving giveaway pack - Food in Jars

A couple weeks ago, I posted a giveaway featuring Foolproof Preserving from America’s Test Kitchen, but neglected to announce the winner. Well, without further delay, the winner is #28/Amber V. Congratulations Amber!

Also, don’t forget that I’m also currently giving away three copies of my new book, Naturally Sweet Food in Jars. If you haven’t entered yet, you have until Saturday!

Comments { 3 }

Giveaway: Naturally Sweet Food in Jars

Naturally Sweet Food in Jars cover (1)

My birthday is this Saturday and in celebration, I’m giving away three copies of my new cookbook, Naturally Sweet Food in Jars. As most of you know, this is my third cookbook(!) and it focuses on preserving with honey, maple, agave, coconut sugar, fruit juice concentrates, and dried fruits.

Naturally Sweet Food in Jars spine

The idea for this book was initially sparked by this post, as well as the many alternatively sweetened recipes that have come since on this site. The finished book features more than 100 recipes for preserves, as well as a handful of recipes designed to help you use up some of what you’ve put up.

Naturally Sweet Food in Jars roasted apricot jam

I had two primary goals in mind when I was writing Naturally Sweet. The first was to translate some of my most beloved sugar-sweetened recipes into those that used less refined sweeteners.

Naturally Sweet Food in Jars Honeyed Meyer Limoncello

The second objective was to create new and novel recipes that would be safe for canning and that featured the various sweeteners in ways that made the most of their unique, individual flavors.

Naturally Sweet Food in Jars Lemony Strawberry Jam

I also wanted to help change the conversation about preserving. So often, people dismiss it because they feel like the products created when you preserve aren’t always the healthiest.

Naturally Sweet Food in Jars Concord Grape Jam

However, by shining a spotlight on alternative sweeteners, I feel like I’ve created a collection of recipes that are able to balance health concerns with issues of safety and shelf stability.

Naturally Sweet Food in Jars Sweet Onion Relish

And, as always, the recipes are relatively small batches that don’t require too much of your time and energy.

Naturally Sweet Food in Jars back

Thanks to my publisher, Running Press, I have three copies of my book to give away today. Here’s how to enter.

  1. Leave a comment on this post and tell me about something you like to eat to celebrate your birthday. And if you don’t have a favorite birthday food, just wish me happy birthday!
  2. Comments will close at 11:59 pm eastern time on Saturday, May 21, 2016. A winner will be chosen at random and will be posted to the blog on Sunday, May 22, 2016.
  3. Giveaway open to United States and Canadian residents. 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: Running Press is providing the giveaway copies at no cost to me. 

Giveaway: Foolproof Preserving from America’s Test Kitchen

Foolproof Preserving cover - Food in Jars

Over the years, America’s Test Kitchen has become known and respected for their tireless pursuit of the very best recipes and techniques for home cooks. In their newest cookbook, Foolproof Preserving: A Guide to Small Batch Jams, Jellies, Pickles, Condiments, and More, they’ve turned their attention to the art of putting up.

Foolproof Preserving peach jam - Food in Jars

Like the other America’s Test Kitchen books that have come before, this volume is thoughtfully constructed, clearly written, beautifully photographed, and features a number of recipes that will have both new canners and seasoned preservers leaping up to gather produce and pull out their cookware.

Foolproof Preserving pickled red onions - Food in Jars

The introduction to this book is particularly useful, because it answers so many of the questions that people typically have about canning. They clearly go into the issues around acid content, achieving set, adjusting for altitude, and, in the case of fermentation, the relationship between salt and temperature.

Foolproof Preserving figs - Food in Jars

As I see it, there exists a fairly large flaw with this book. To my imperfect count, of the 111 recipes included, 42 of them cannot be processed and made shelf stable. To be fair, there are 16 recipes for quick and fermented pickles, which are things that never go into a boiling water bath in the first place. But that still leaves us with a goodly number of recipes that will require space in the freezer or fridge.

I can see why the authors made the choices they did. They were developing recipes where the topmost priority was flavor, texture, and freshness. Those are all noble and worthy goals. However, as someone who preserves primarily to create good-tasting food that can live on the shelf until needed, I find myself frustrated to be confronted with a tomato jam recipe that can’t be processed (particularly since a small amount of citric acid would make it safe for the canner and would have very little impact on the finished flavor).

Foolproof Preserving back - Food in Jars

Reading the introduction, I have a sense of why this book came to be as it is. The authors confess from the start that they approached this project as canning novices and that the testing was a process of discovery for them. I can see how that shaped the book I hold in my hands, because they were not driven by the primary goal of having shelf stable preserves to last the year. However, it doesn’t stop me from wishing they’d better addressed the fact from the start that 38% of the book focuses on short-term, rather than long-term, preserving.

Foolproof Preserving giveaway pack - Food in Jars

With all of that off my chest, let me say that again that this is a beautiful, well-designed, useful book. If long-term shelf stability isn’t your primary goal, you will find much to love here. I plan on exploring this book throughout the summer and fall, just taking care not to fall in love with too many recipes that demand space from in my limited fridge and freezer.

Thanks to the kind folks at America’s Test Kitchen, I have one copy of this beautiful book to give away, along with a jar lifter and stainless steel wide mouth funnel. Here’s how to enter.

  1. Leave a comment on this post. Tell me about something you’ve preserved lately, or a preserve you opened and enjoyed in recent days.
  2. Comments will close at 11:59 pm eastern time on Sunday, May 8, 2016. A winner will be chosen at random and will be posted to the blog on Monday, May 9, 2016.
  3. Giveaway open to United States only (so sorry!). 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: America’s Test Kitchen sent me the copy of the paperback you see here, along with a box of jars, two wide mouth funnels, and a jar lifter. I’ve included the jar lifter and one of the wide mouth funnels in the giveaway, they’re also providing the second copy of the book. All this has been done at no cost to me. No additional compensation has been provided. All opinions expressed are entirely my own. 

Giveaway: Mason Jar Lifestyle Mother’s Day Coffee Gift Set

Mason Jar Lifestyle Mother's Day Mother's Day Coffee Gift Set - Food in Jars

I’ve been excited about this week’s giveaway since Maggie from Mason Jar Lifestyle (a Food in Jars sponsor!) first reached out about it. Her Mother’s Day Coffee Gift Set pairs up two of my favorite things (jars and coffee) and gives people the opportunity to celebrate their favorite maternal individual. It’s a very winning combination!

Mason Jar Coffee Co. - Food in Jars

The gift set costs $39.99 (including shipping!) and includes a bounty of jar-related coffee goodness. First thing you’ll spot when your recipient (or you!) open the box is a 12 ounce bag of medium roast coffee from the Mason Jar Coffee Company (best name ever!), based in Linden, MI. You can get either whole beans or opt to have them ground.

Mason Jar Lifestyle handle sleeve - Food in Jars

In addition to the bag of coffee, your recipient will get a wide mouth mason jar and a faux leather sleeve handle, designed to protect your fingers and make manageable a jar of piping hot coffee. The handle sleeve feels sturdy, fits the jar securely, and does a great job of absorbing heat.

Mason Jar Lifestyle silicone drink lids - Food in Jars

Also included in the set are a pair of Mason Jar Lifestyle-branded silicone drink lids. Maggie included two in the kit because she understands that dishes can sometimes sit in the sink for a day or two and wanted to make sure that busy moms could always find at least one clean drink lid!

Jarware Coffee Spoon Clip - Food in Jars

The last thing your mama will find in her box of coffee and jar goodness is a clip-on coffee spoon, made by Jarware. It fits snugly on both regular and wide mouth mason jar, so that you always have the perfect portioning scoop on hand (excellent for groggy mornings).

Maggie will also tuck one of the mason jar “Happy Mother’s Day” notecards you see at the top into every box. If you want a special message written on yours, just make sure to indicate that at check out!

Milky Coffee in Handled Jar Sleeve - Food in Jars

To enter the Mason Jar Lifestyle Mother’s Day Coffee Gift Set giveaway, complete at least one of the tasks in the widget below! If you can’t bear to leave things to chance, you can order your very own set right here. Just know that they’ll be closing orders on this deal on May 1, to ensure that all sets arrive in time for May 8.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: Maggie from Mason Jar Lifestyle sent me the Coffee Gift Set you see pictured above so that I could take pictures of it and share my experiences with it. She is also providing the giveaway unit. Both sets are being provided at no cost to me. What’s more, Mason Jar Lifestyle is a Food in Jars sponsor and so provides monetary support to this website. However, all opinions expressed here are entirely my own and uninfluenced by our partnership. 

Giveaway: $150 of Freeze-Dried Food from Harvest Right

HarvestRight jars

Photo courtesy of Harvest Right

When I was a kid, freeze dried foods seemed magical. They looked like their fresh counterparts, but when you bit into them they were typically crisp and a bit crumbly. The one my sister and I liked the best was the freeze dried ice cream (aka astronaut’s ice cream), because it was such a sweet treat.

Harvest Right freeze dryers

Photo courtesy of Harvest Right

When I started preserving food and was researching all the various ways to do it, I looked into what it took to freeze dry food and discovered at that time, it just wasn’t something that could be done at home. The machines cost tens of thousands of dollars and were far bigger than anything I could fit into my apartment-sized kitchen.

Harvest Right packaging

However, in recent years, a company called Harvest Right has entered the market with a freeze dryer that’s scaled and priced for home use. While not cheap, it allows home users to preserve food in a way that makes it light, easily storable, and still delicious.

Harvest Right apple slices

I’ve not had a chance to try a Harvest Right Home Freeze Dryer myself (sadly, this machine is still a bit too big for my little apartment), reading this post over on Our Best Bites made me itch to take one for a spin. However, I have had a chance to try some food dried in one of these magical freeze dryers and I’ve found them to be flavorful, texturally interesting, and really fun to eat.

Harvest Right freeze-dried bananas

For today’s giveaway, Harvest Right wants to give one lucky Food in Jars reader a chance to try some food preserved in their Home Freeze Dryer. Use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter to win $150 worth of food dried in a Harvest Right machine (to maximize your chances, make sure to enter using all the different options)!

a Rafflecopter giveaway