Giveaway: Microplane Adjustable Slicer with Julienne Blade

Adjustable Microplane Slicer

Last year, on a whim I picked up an inexpensive, handheld slicer. Smaller than a mandoline and far easier to clean than a food processor, it quickly became one of my go-to tools for making salads, shredding Brussels sprouts, and prepping vegetables for pickles.

I liked that slicer so much that when canning season started, I packed it into the bag of tools I take to classes and then promptly left it behind someplace on the eastern seaboard. Since then, I’ve been meaning to pick up a new slicer, but it kept sliding down the priority list.

shredded sprouts

Make this shredded sprout saute! The recipe is up on Table Matters.

Happily, my procrastination has actually paid off. Microplane has recently introduced a new adjustable slicer (it even has a julienne blade that you can drop in to make nice long ribbons) and sent me one to try out. It’s razor sharp, simple to handle, and easy to store. It’s miles better than my first little slicer (and I thought that one was the bee’s knees) and I am totally delighted by it.

Thanks to the nice folks at Microplane, I have one of these nifty slicers to give away. Here’s how to enter.

  1. Leave a comment on this post and tell me about your favorite shredded or sliced recipe.
  2. Comments will close at 11:59 pm east coast time on Friday, October 11, 2013. Winners will be chosen at random (using random.org) and will be posted on Sunday, October 13, 2013.
  3. Giveaway is open to US residents.
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left on the blog, I cannot accept submissions via email.
Disclosure: Microplane sent me a slicer to try and is also providing the one for this giveaway. My opinions remain my own. 

Upcoming Classes: Pressure Canning! Apple Pie Filling! Autumn Retreat!

class image revised

Teaching classes is one of the best parts of my job. It’s when I get to come out from behind the stove or computer and spend some time showing many of you lovely people how to jam, pickle, and can. I have a number of classes on the schedule for the coming weeks, but I have just three that I want to particularly emphasize right now.

This Wednesday, October 9, I’m teaching a pressure canning class at Cooking Spotlight in Phoenixville, PA. For those of you who are scared of your pressure canners, this session will put you at ease and will have you preserving low acid things like chicken stock and made from scratch beans in no time (I’m going to demonstrate the pressure canner using a batch of onion rosemary jam). The class is from 6:30 – 9 pm and costs $55. Click here to sign up.

My last class of the season at Indy Hall is this Saturday, October 12 from 11 am – 1 pm. We’re making spiced apple pie filling, which is the best stuff ever to have on hand for quick holiday desserts and easy brunch treats. I’ll show you how to use Clear Jel, a canning-safe thickener. Class is from 11 am to 1 pm and costs $50 per person. Leave a comment or email me to sign up.

The last class I want to spotlight is my weekend-long canning retreat at Rowe Center in Western Massachusetts. This workshop starts in the evening of Friday, November 1 and runs through lunchtime on Sunday, November 3. To further entice you to join me for that weekend, I’ve included the outline of canning activities I have planned after the jump. Please feel free to ask me any questions you might have about that weekend, because I really would love to have a few more of you join me! And if the outline has you convinced, you can find registration information here.

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Links: End of Season Stonefruit and Winners

Using up the last egg. Good thing there's a farmers market tomorrow

Most weeks, I use this space above these links to share some of what’s going on in my life. This week, things have been blessedly quiet in my household, so instead, I’m sharing a little tidbit from my singer songwriter sister’s life.

About a year ago, I helped Raina set up a blog called Fam on the Road, so that she and her husband could share bits and pieces of their lives as touring musicians and parents. On Friday, she posted an open letter as a response to all the craziness that’s been going down in the world of Miley Cyrus, Sinead O’Connor, and Amanda Palmer and it’s truly lovely, both in the writing and in the sentiment. If you have a moment, I highly encourage you to read it.

Now, onto the links…

Big Mouth Funnels

bigmouth funnel winners So many thanks to everyone who took the time to enter last week’s Bigmouth Flat Pack Funnel giveaway. It was such a kick to read about all the different pieces of kitchen and cookware that you’d like to see redesigned. Who knows, maybe someday it will happen! The winners are:

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Preserves in Action: Tomato Jam

greens, ricotta and tomato jam on toast

I have fallen into something of a lunchtime routine. I start a couple slices of toast, pull out a jar of tomato jam, and then rummage around, looking for some leftover to add to bridge the toast and jam. Earlier today, I piled the toast high with some leftover braised collards and a little ricotta cheese before spooning on a little jam.

fromage blanc and tomato jam

 

Last week, I spread my toast with a little fromage blanc and then added the the tomato goodness (I also had a giant salad of arugula, baby lettuce, and chopped apple). I’ve also used this same formula with leftover roast chicken, baked tofu, and even cold steamed broccoli.

How are you guys using your preserves these days?

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October Sponsors: Cuppow, Fillmore Container, Eat Boutique, and More

inside the Eat Boutique box

It’s the beginning of October and that means it’s time to mention and thank the current Food in Jars sponsors. These are the companies make it possible for me to spent time testing recipes, writing tutorials, and answering canning questions.

In the top spot is Cuppow. They are the maker of the original mason jar travel mug topper and, more recently, of the BNTO (they sponsored last week’s awesome giveaway). Their products are the best things ever for hitting the road with your precious canning jars.

Next up is Fillmore Container. They sell all manner of canning jars and lids, as well as a handful of books and jar accessories. They’re a family-owned business based in Lancaster, PA and they happily work with home canners and commercial producers alike. They sponsored last week’s Itty Bitty Jar giveaway!

New to the sponsorship round-up is Eat Boutique, an online magazine and market that discovers and celebrates the best small batch foods by boutique makers. They sell specialty gift boxes and regularly host tastings and pop-up markets.

I’m happy to welcome Preserving Now back for another month! Operated by Lyn Deardorff, Preserving Now is both a website and school dedicated to helping people expand their canning and preserving skills. If you’re in the Atlanta area, make sure to check out her schedule of upcoming classes and events!

Another sponsor that’s new this month is The Clay Studio. This Philadelphia-based non-profit was founded in 1974 and is dedicated to affirming the importance of the ceramic arts. They work to make clay an accessible medium to a broad range of people. They sell a number of pieces in their shop that are both lovely to look at and to hold.

I am always delighted to welcome new sponsors to the site. Ads start at $75 a month. More information can be found here.

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Giveaway: Big Mouth Flat Pack Funnels

Big Mouth Funnels

In my years as a canner, I’ve tried nearly every available wide mouth funnel on the market. I own nearly a dozen different models made in materials ranging from plastic, to tempered glass, to stainless steel. One thing all these funnels have in common is that they’re bulky (much of my collection lives in a wicker basket in the living room, because there’s no room for them in the kitchen).

Big Mouth Funnels

Happily, Robin Bristow, a designer based in Australia, has recently developed a funnel designed to fit in kitchens with even the most limited cabinet space. Called the Big Mouth Funnel, this tool comes in two sizes and packs absolutely flat for easy storage.

Big Mouth Funnels

The small size is perfect for filling salt shakers, pepper mills, and spice jars, while the larger size can handle all manner of hefty jars. I’m planning on using one for trips to Whole Foods when I’m buying from the bulk section. I’ve often taken conventional wide mouth funnels with me to help dispense from bin to jar, but having a flat pack funnel in my kit will make the job even easier.

Big Mouth Funnels

I will say that I’m a little wary of using these funnels when filled up hot jars with jam or chutney just off the boil. They make no claims that they’re heatproof and so I plan to continue to use my traditional funnels for anything that is piping hot. Even setting them aside for those tasks, I can see them becoming invaluable over time.

Thanks to Robin and Big Mouth Funnels, I have ten pairs of flat pack funnels to give away! Here’s how to enter.

  1. Leave a comment on this post and share a kitchen or canning tool that you wish you could reinvent or redesign.
  2. Comments will close at 5 pm east coast time on Saturday, October 5, 2013. Winners will be chosen at random (using random.org) and will be posted on Sunday, October 6, 2013.
  3. Giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents.
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left on the blog, I cannot accept submissions via email.
Disclosure: Big Mouth Funnel sent me a set of their funnels to try and is also providing the ten for this giveaway. My opinions remain my own.