This year we decided to make raspberry applesauce, just for a change of pace. It turned out surprisingly well!
(Even Nala was helping)
The first Friday of the month is reserved for recipes. You can see additional First Friday Food posts here.
We make a lot of jam. I mean a LOOOOT of jam. Our pantry is stocked with apocalypse-preparation levels of jams, marmalades, curds, chutneys, and compotes. We have an average of about 5 open variety of jams in our fridge at any given time. Short of Frank Smuckers, there are not many people who have more jam on hand than us.
And none of those jams, none of them, are better than balsamic strawberry jam.
It all starts with the fresh strawberries, of course.
Although Sara does most of the canning, it is something of an “all hands on deck” situation. The kids do seem to honestly enjoy the fact that they get to help make the food (although, it’s possible they are just humoring me). Especially something as delicious as jam.
Now, I know what you’re thinking: balsamic vinegar in jam? That sounds absolutely disgusting. Why would I want to pollute something as simple and delicious as strawberries and sugar with balsamic vinegar?
I DON’T KNOW.
But you do. Oh, how you do. I’m afraid you’re just going to have to take my word on it. I’m something of an expert, you know.
Did I mention that there is no better jam? There is no better jam.
Use it on whatever you use jam on, but also try it drizzled on some vanilla ice cream. Heavenly.
Naturally, no recipe is complete without the secret ingredient: one photobomb.
Recipe adapted from Farmish Momma:
This post originally appeared on the Zombie Preparedness Initiative website.
As a follow-up to my previous post, here are some more detailed instructions on water-bath canning.
First off, most of these steps are generic for any type of canning, but there may be slight variations depending on what you are canning. Always follow the specific instructions over the general guidelines below. If, in fact, the zombie apocalypse has already taken place and you are a zombie looking for directions on how to can brains, no recipes exist as far as I know, and you’re going to have to wing it.
Overall, the general idea is to sterilize the food and containers and then seal them, preventing contamination and allowing the food to be “shelf stable” without requiring refrigeration. We’re talking about bacterial contamination here; it is unlikely that a hot water bath would sufficiently destroy any lurking zombie virus pathogens.
Propper jars, lids, and rings are necessary. Other equipment, such as a canning pot, funnel, and jar-lifter are not strictly necessary, but are cheap and easy enough to come by, that they are worth the time and effort they will save you. Rings and jars can be re-used, but lids must be new every time to ensure a good seal. Jars should be checked each time for chips or imperfections in the rim, which will prevent the jar from sealing.
Any pot will do for the canning, but it must be able to cover the jars with at least 1 inch of water. The bigger the pot, the more volume you can process at a time. Processing the jars can be the longest part, so processing more at a time can greatly reduce your overall time. Our standard canner can fit 7 quarts, and comes with a wire rack for holding and lowering the jars into the water. For items that don’t need such big jars, such as jams in half-pint jars, we just use a regular, large pot.
In the case of canning under threat of zombie attack, you will also need an assistant wielding the standard zombie fighting equipment, such as shotguns, chainsaws and kick-ass fighting music.
That’s it! Before you know it, your pantry will be stocked with long-lasting fruits and vegetables (or brains and other assorted body parts) that require virtually no upkeep, and will keep the occupants of any post-apocalypse bunker well fed and happy, human or otherwise.