Tag Archives | Put ‘Em Up

Cookbooks: Put ‘Em Up, Love Your Leftovers, and Starting from Scratch

cookbook stack

One of the things I haven’t been doing enough of lately is sharing some of the excellent books that regularly land in my mailbox. The stack next to my desk is getting precariously tall and so I’m going make a concerted effort to bring the Friday afternoon cookbook feature.

This week, there are three books that I want to share. One is a book that contains the answer to every canning question you’ve ever had. The next is a paen to the humble leftover. And the third wants to inform young cooks and help them get excited about getting into the kitchen.

Put 'em Up answer book

First up is the final book in Sherri Brooks Vinton’s excellent canning trilogy (the first and second books were Put ‘em Up! and Put ‘em Up! Fruit). Called The Put ‘em Up! Preserving Answer Book: 399 Solutions to All Your Questions, this spiral-bound volume packs a mighty punch when it comes to useful canning knowledge.

While you’ll find a few recipes in this book, it’s not designed to be the book you turn to for inspiration on what to make. Instead, it plays the role of reliable canning teacher, who is always there with a helpful suggestion to make your preserving process better, faster, and more fun. You’ll find everything from tips on how to improve the quality of your seals, to the design for Sherri’s ideal canning porch (I want one!).

I think this book should be a required resource for all new canners, as it dives deep while also managing to be accessible and unintimidating.

Love Your Leftovers

Next up is Nick Evans’ book, Love Your Leftovers. Some of you might remember an earlier version of this book, called Cornerstone Cooking. The core of Nick’s concept is that instead of making meals from scratch every single day, once or twice a week, you make a large amount of something (like a couple roast chickens or a braised pork shoulder) and then use those items as central players in any number of other dishes.

I thought it was a great concept in Cornerstone Cooking and I’m so pleased to see that Nick got a chance to expand on the idea in Love Your Leftovers and make is even prettier and more user friendly. If you’re in the market for some fresh culinary inspiration, check this one out.

Starting from Scratch

The last book on today’s stack is Starting From Scratch. Written by food journalist Sarah Elton, this book wants to teach kids everything they need to become informed home cooks in today’s dizzying culinary landscape.

While the book does include some basic recipes, the emphasis is more on building knowledge about the properties of flavor, how to read a recipe, and even how to pick the right tool for the job. There’s even a short section devoted to various food preservation methods, which delighted me.

This is the kind of book that I would have devoured when I was seven or eight years old and I plan on buying copies for all my friends who have kids in that age group.

Comments { 2 }

Canning Book: Put ‘Em Up (+ giveaway!)

Put 'Em Up

One of the things I love most about the fact that canning and home food preservation is gaining popularity is how it’s meant an increase in beautifully designed, thoughtfully written and downright inspirational books on the subject.

Put 'Em Up

Take, for instances, Put ‘em Up!, a new release by Sherri Brooks Vinton. The book bills itself as “A Comprehensive Home Preservation Guide” and covers not only canning, but also drying and freezing. And truly, after spending several days paging through this hefty number, I think she’s managed to cover just about everything you’d want to know on the subject.

Put 'Em Up

I’m particularly smitten with the line drawings they’ve used in place of illustrative photographs. Though I like a pretty food image as much as the next girl, I could see how they could be distracting when your primary goal is to convey deeply useful information in a crisp and intelligible manner.

Put 'Em Up

This isn’t to say that there aren’t any photos in the book. You’ll find pages like this at the front of each section, each featuring a number of quirky and colorful examples of what you could make, should you choose to pick up a copy.

Put 'Em Up

Don’t you just love this two-page spread on how to make fermented pickles! It’s just so helpful! As you can tell, I have something of a crush on this book. Call it my canning companion of the moment.

If you’re thinking that you’d like to make a copy of this book yours, leave a comment on this post. Tell me about your favorite pickle and do it before Tuesday, July 20th at 11:59 p.m. (I’ll be closing the comments at that time). I have two copies of this book to give away (provided by the publisher), so your chances to win are even greater than normal (and, if you don’t win, I’d still recommend picking up a copy. It’s less than $14 on Amazon).

Let the giveaway begin!