Tag Archives | giveaway

Giveaway: Foundation Salt Set from The Meadow

Foundation Salt Set - Food in Jars

Salt has forever been an essential ingredient in food preservation. It plays a key role in pickling, whether you’re fermenting or using vinegar, and has also long been used to preserve meat and fish.

As canners, one of the things we often hear is that pickling salt is the only way to go. And while it’s true that it dissolves quickly and doesn’t contain any additives that could discolor your pickles, I believe there are places for a variety of salts in the home preserver’s toolbox.

Fleur de Sel - Food in Jars

For the last few summers, I’ve made all my pickles with fine grain sea salts like this Fleur de Sel from The Meadow. I measure it out by weight in order to ensure that I don’t oversalt my dilly bean and cucumber dills (more on how to swap salts by weight in this post from 2010) and the finished pickles are fabulous and the quality of the brine suffers not at all from the salt substitution.

Sel Gris - Food in Jars

When I want to incorporate chunkier, more mineral-flavored salts like Sel Gris in my preserving, I opt for a batch of Herbs Salees (it’s best done in high summer, when tender herbs can be had for a song). I have a version of salt preserved herbs in my new cookbook, or you can try the technique on Well Preserved. They add incredible flavor to soups and stews.

Flake Salt - Food in Jars

Recently, the folks at The Meadow sent me their Foundation Salt Set (it retails for $40. If that feels too spendy, maybe their Mini Foundation Set at $20 might suit your budget?) and a little jar of deeply smoked sea salt to play with. I’ve been a customer of theirs since 2009, but their inventory is so deep that other that the Fleur de Sel, all the salts were new to me.

I have two pickle recipes going up later this week that feature these interesting salts, so stay tuned for those. However, in the mean time, let’s have a giveaway! The Meadow is offering up one of their Foundation Salt Sets to one lucky Food in Jars reader. Here’s how to enter:

  1. Leave a comment on this post and share a salty tidbit. Do you have a favorite salt? Have you ever tried making your own sea salt? Tell me something about your relationship with salt.
  2. Comments will close at 11:59 pm on Saturday, April 5, 2014. Winners will be chosen at random and will be posted to the blog on Sunday, April 6, 2014.
  3. Giveaway open to US residents only.
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left via the comment form on the blog at the bottom of this post.

Disclosure: The Meadow sent me some salt to use and photograph and are also providing a set for the winner of this giveaway. However, they did not pay to be featured here on this blog and all opinions expressed here are mine and mine alone.

A Peek Inside Preserving by the Pint + Giveaway

Preserving by the Pint cover - Food in Jars

I’ve been showing you all the cover of my new book, Preserving by the Pint, for months now. I thought that since today is its official release date (though Amazon makes such things mostly moot by shipping pre-orders as soon as it has them in stock), it might be fun to show you what it looks like on the inside.

Preserving by the Pint inside spread - Food in Jars

This book is full of tiny batches and was written with farmers market shoppers, CSA subscribers, and container gardeners in mind (though truly, if you’re not among those groups, the book is still for you). All the recipes start with either a pint, a quart, or a pound (or two) because those are the units of measure that so many of us end up with after a trip to the green market, grocery store, or farm share pick-up.

Instead of giving away your excess produce, or worse, tossing on the compost pile, you can preserve it. Make pesto from that giant bundle of Thai basil. Cook excess zucchini down into a creamy, garlicky butter. And transform those alien-like heads of kohlrabi into crisp, tasty pickles.

Preserving by the Pint Spring - Food in Jars

Unlike my first book, which was arranged by type of preserve, Preserving by the Pint is set up seasonally. The idea is that you can start at the beginning with Spring and preserve your way through both the year and the book. As someone who did essentially that while writing the book, I can promise, you’ll end up with a delightfully varied assortment of things in your pantry and freezer when that year is up.

Marinated Sugar Snap Peas - Food in Jars

One thing you’ll start to notice about this book is that while all the recipes do preserve the season, they don’t all do it through canning. A generous handful of the recipes are designed for refrigerator storage and yet others are best frozen. I made the storage choices I did in order to create the best finished product possible.

These marinated sugar snap peas, for instances, are a quick pickle because if you were to process them in a boiling water bath canner, all those spritely peas would lose their snap and crunch. Kept in the fridge, they last a respectable amount of time and are far more delicious.

Pizza Sauce - Food in Jars

This quick tomato sauce is one of my very favorite recipes in the book. Most years, I buy a 100 pounds of tomatoes and spend a week preserving them whole or as puree. However, throughout the summer, there are often small deals on cracked or otherwise marred tomatoes at my local market that I hate to pass up.

This sauce makes it possible to spend a dollar or two, invest a little time peeling and cooking, and end up with two half pints of glorious, flavorful pizza sauce from each batch. Because I make four or five batches over the course of the summer, I end up with enough sauce to last all year, but it doesn’t feel like any work at all and costs nearly nothing.

Sweet Pear Caramel - Food in Jars

In writing this book, I also worked hard to come up with recipes that solved problems. I often hear from people that they wish they could can caramel sauces. While this sweet pear caramel doesn’t have the creamy mouthfeel of a batch made with heavy cream, it’s a really delicious sauce that can be used in place of traditional caramel drizzles (and if you don’t like pears, try it with peach or raspberry puree).

Preserving by the Pint back - Food in Jars

I am really proud of how this book turned out and am so grateful to Running Press for helping me turn an idea into a beautiful, useful thing.

Finally, it’s time for the weekly giveaway to return. I have three signed copies of Preserving by the Pint, liberated from my stash of author copies, to give away. Here’s how to enter:

  1. Leave a comment on this post and tell me what you think about the new book. Or, if you’re not ready to share your thoughts, tell me about your favorite small batch preserving project.
  2. Comments will close at 11:59 pm on Saturday, March 29, 2014. Winners will be chosen at random and will be posted to the blog on Sunday, March 30, 2014.
  3. Giveaway open all.
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left via the comment form on the blog at the bottom of this post.

P.S. The new book has gotten a bit of love from some of my local media outlets. Here’s what the Philly’s Citypaper, Geekadelphia, and Table Matters have to say.

Giveaway: Tulid Reusable Leak-Proof Lids

Tulid stacked from above

Traditional two piece canning jar lids are designed to seal easily and safely. That is what they’re best at and they do it well. However, those of us who use our mason jars for dry goods, leftovers, liquids, and other acts of storage and toting know that two piece lids often leave something to be desired.

Tulid stacked side

Ball does make some plastic one piece lids, but they are neither air or liquid tight, so their utility is limited. Happily, the folks at Simpler Products have stepped into the void with a product called the Tulid. It’s a one piece lid that is reusable, totally leak-proof, and has a removable gasket that makes it dead easy to clean.

Tulid gaskets

I first discovered Tulid last fall when they were running their Kickstarter campaign. I backed the effort and got a package containing lids for both regular and wide mouth jars in early February. I’ve been using these lids very happily on a daily basis since then and am contemplating ordering more (they sell for $25 for three lids).

Tulid gaskets removed

The Tulid lids are great because they give you a very secure seal. I know that when I put them on a jar holding teriyaki sauce or maple syrup (two things I find myself storing on a regular basis), if the jar tips over in the fridge, it is not going to leak.

I also appreciate how easy they are to clean. The silicone gaskets pop out so that you can clean them completely and then slip right back into the lid when they are dry. The tops of the lid also work with wet erase markers, which means that you can clearly mark what’s in the jars (so that no one confuses the teriyaki sauce with the maple syrup).

Tulid in action

Obviously, these lids are not designed for canning. They are for storage and transportation and do a fabulous job of it. And thanks to the nice folks at Tulid, I have five sets of these lids to give away to Food in Jars readers. Here’s how to enter.

  1. Leave a comment on this post and share how you’d use these jars.
  2. Comments will close at 11:59 pm on Saturday, March 8, 2014. Winners will be chosen at random and will be posted to the blog on Sunday, March 9, 2014.
  3. Giveaway open to US.
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left via the comment form on the blog at the bottom of this post.

Disclosure: Tulid has generously offered to provide the lids for this giveaway. No money has changed hands, I bought my own lids, and my opinions are, as always, my own. 

Giveaway: New Blue and Green Lids From Ball

boxes of lids

Several years back, I had a small stash of red and white checked lids and rings that I’d picked up at a close-out sale. I rationed them carefully, using them on preserves I planned on giving as gifts or featuring her on the blog. Every time I posted a picture, someone would comment to ask where I’d gotten then. I hated always having to disappoint people by telling them that they weren’t available anymore.

colored lids

Happily, Ball recently released a new option for those canners who are itching to dress their jars up with something other than a basic silver lid. Called the Design Series, these new lids come in either metallic blue or green and are sold with matching rings. They come in boxes of six and currently retail for $5.95. Just like their silver siblings, they are BPA-free and are good for a single trip through the canner.

colored rings

I realize that these lids and rings are a bit pricier than the regular ones. If you can many hundreds of jars a year, they might not be the ones you reach for. What they are is a fun option for people who focus on small batches, are canning for an event (a wedding, perhaps?), or just want to give a few select jars a little extra sparkle. They also match up really nicely with the limited edition blue and green jars.

lids on colored jars

Thanks to the nice folks at Ball, I have five sets of these lids to give away. Each winner will get one of the green ones and one of the blue (each box holds six lids and rings, so each winner will receive a dozen lids and rings in total). Here’s how to enter:

  1. Leave a comment on this post and tell me one thing you’re looking forward to canning this season.
  2. Comments will close at 12 noon on Sunday, March 2, 2014. Winners will be chosen at random and will be posted to the blog later that day.
  3. Giveaway open to US and Canadian residents.
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left via the comment form on the blog at the bottom of this post.

Disclosure: Ball gave me a set of these lids for photography purposes and are providing the giveaway units as well. No money has changed hands and my opinions are, as always, my own. 

Giveaway: Food-Themed Note Cards from League Street Press

you are unbeetable

My friend Joy Manning is a thank you note evangelist. In an age where people send their regards electronically (if they send them at all), Joy pulls out a pretty note card, writes a brief but thoughtful message, and then hands it off to the US Postal Service. I have been on the receiving end of Joy’s note writing habit more than once and I’m always delighted to receive a piece of physical mail beyond bills and coupons for Bed, Bath, and Beyond.

League Street Press cards

Last spring, Joy gave a talk at Eat, Write, Retreat about how her note writing habit is integral to her career networking strategy (she’s a freelance food writer, recipe developer, and editor) and how it has often brought more assignments her way. I was there for her talk and I was inspired enough to dig out my dusty stack of thank you notes and write appreciations to people who have helped me over the years.

olive my love

In a move that has delighted many (or, at the very least, me), Joy has launched a line of food-themed note cards in partnership with her friend Sam Bednarek under the name League Street Press. Each card has a fruit or vegetable on the front, along with a punny line. I particularly like the “olive my love” design that you see above. Sam is a graphic designer and art director and she designed the cards and created the art. Joy came up with the lines and developed the recipes that are printed on the back.

no-churn peach ice cream

And let me tell you, these recipes aren’t throwaways. Joy tested and retested these dishes in order to come up delicious things that would be both easy and appealing. I had a chance to taste the No-Churn Peach Ice Cream when it was in development and so I speak from first-hand experience when I say that it’s truly fabulous and is such a good option for those of us who can’t find space in our freezers to chill an ice cream bowl (I am sure that I’m not the only one with this issue).

Best of all, these note cards are perfectly sized to slip right into a recipe box, so your recipient will be able to add it to their recipe collection with tearing or folding your thoughtful note.

League Street Press back

The cards can be bought as singles ($4 a piece) or in boxes of eight ($20 for a box). They are printed on sturdy card stock and both the cards and envelopes are made from 100% recycled paper.

Thanks to Joy and Sam, I have one box of eight note cards to give away to a lucky Food in Jars reader. Here’s how to enter:

  1. Leave a comment on this post and share a thank you note story. Did your parents make you write them when you were growing up? Or is it a habit you never quite picked up?
  2. Comments will close at 11:59 pm on Saturday, February 22, 2014. Winners will be chosen at random and will be posted to the blog on Sunday, February 23, 2014.
  3. Giveaway open to US and Canadian residents.
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left via the comment form on the blog at the bottom of this post.

Disclosure: League Street Press gave me one set of these notecards for photography purposes and are providing a second set for the giveaway. No money has changed hands. I just think they’re cool and so I wanted to share them with you. 

Giveaway: New Ball Heritage Collection Green Jars

green heritage jars

As you might remember, Ball released a line of limited edition blue glass pint jars last year. It was a fun throwback to canning jars of yore and I enjoyed using them throughout the 2013 canning season (though I will confess, they do make my peaches look a bit little sickly).

This year, Ball is continuing the special edition trend with a limited release of green jars. These jars will be available in both regular mouth pint jars and wide mouth quarts, which is particularly exciting for those of who like to use wide mouth quart jars as drinking glasses (I’ll actually have more about my habit of drinking out of wide mouth quarts later this week). Just like the blue jars, they will be making a finite number, so if you fall in love with this particular look, make sure to stock up sooner rather than later.

green heritage jars in situ

Typically, I don’t like to write about new jars and products without having had a chance to experience them personally, but we had a little shipping snafu and the jars that were coming to me got a bit delayed. However, I promised a good giveaway this week and so made an exception. When I do get these jars into my hot little hands, I’ll be posting a follow-up post and some photos, so that you can get a better idea of what they look like in the real world.

Fillmore Container recently published a post on their blog about these new jars and they have a couple of additional images if you’re interested. They’ll also be taking online orders for them soon.

Now, here’s the giveaway scoop. The nice folks at Ball have given me 10 cases of the green pint jars to give away to 10 lucky winners (each winner will receive one case, which contains 6 jars). Here’s how to enter:

  1. Leave a comment on this post and share how you’d use these new jars in your home.
  2. Comments will close at 12 noon on Sunday, February 2, 2014. Winners will be chosen at random and will be posted to the blog later that day.
  3. Giveaway open to US residents only (so sorry, my further-flung readers).
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left via the comment form on the blog at the bottom of this post.

Disclosure: The jars for this giveaway have been provided by the manufacturer at no cost to me. However, my opinions remain entirely my own.