How To Make Jerky At Home with Venison or Elk

Lazy Homesteader: Venison Jerky

Some urban homesteading families have the inclination and skill to go beyond gleaning and gathering and put their meat on the table – literally – through hunting and fishing. Anisa Schell’s family is one, and today I am thrilled to share her recipe for Wild Game Jerky.  Anisa blogs at Lazy Homesteader and gets dirt under her [Continue Reading...]

Figs with Lemon Ricotta and Mint

Figs with Lemon Ricotta and Mint (2)

This is one of those dishes that, as a caterer, I could charge $3 per piece for and people would happily pay it. Perfectly fresh figs topped with homemade fresh lemon ricotta and sprigs of organic spearmint. Can’t you just hear the cash draining from wallets everywhere? Actually, figs are a beast to work with [Continue Reading...]

Stop Throwing Away Free Tomato Sauce

Making Thick Tomato Sauce From Tomato Skins (3)

It has come to my attention that many people are unwittingly throwing away free tomato sauce when they preserve their summer tomatoes. Here’s the thing: like all fruit, the skin of tomato is where much of the natural pectin resides. Pectin is the starch that gives jams their thickness and good tomato sauce its natural, [Continue Reading...]

How To Martha-Up Your Jam Labels For Nearly Free In About 5 Minutes

Avery Label Options For Canning Jar Labels (7)

The pile of canned tomatoes and pickles and jams on my dining room table is begging to be put safely away in the pantry. The only problem: I like to Martha-up my jam with cute labels. Although I have, in the past, recommended inexpensive cut-out labels for jam jars, many readers have enlightened me to [Continue Reading...]

Zombies vs. The Joy of Canning: Motivation in the Productive Home

Blanching Tomatoes

“Hey, we were planning on getting together later today, right?” I asked my friend. “Yeah, but after dinner.” “Can we push that back to later in the week?” I was exhausted from Can-o-Rama and the idea of a social commitment after dinner was more than I could handle. “Sure. What’s up?” “I’m pretty tired. I [Continue Reading...]

Can-o-Rama 2012

Can-o-rama 2012 (1)

It’s 1:43 AM Monday as I write this. The past 56 hours have been a Can-o-rama from “where’s-my-coffee?” to way-past-dusk that has precluded the writing of any witty or useful blog posts. I’m eating good cheese with a spoon, too tired even to drink the well-deserved pour of wine next to me. I got nothin’, [Continue Reading...]

How To Make Pectin-Free Jam: Ditch The Box and Increase The Creativity In Your Preserves

How To Make Jam Without Pectin (3)

Do you need pectin to make jam? I used to think so. I followed the recipe on the inside of the pectin box slavishly for 7 years before I broke free of the pectin bonds. Every year, my strawberry jam tasted exactly like the strawberry jam of everyone else who wore the Sure-Jell shackles. The [Continue Reading...]

Create Your Own Signature Jam By Mixing and Matching Flavors

Apricot Jam with Lime, Ginger and Tequila

It’s unofficial Preserve Week here at Northwest Edible Life. I know because my floor is sticky with canning syrup and my refrigerator smells like pickle brine. It’s hard for me to think of anything else but putting food by right now, so I’m going to be talking jams and pickles all week long. I hope [Continue Reading...]

Seven Great Things You Missed On Facebook: Peanut Sauce, Peaches and More

Peach Ice Cream

It’s been a busy week over on the Northwest Edible Facebook Page. We blew through the 5,000s in no time and are currently sitting at over 6,000 smart, bad-ass and very attractive community members. Thank you guys! Homebrew Husband captured the exact moment of the 6,000th like on his phone. Not that we are total [Continue Reading...]

August Garden Photo Tour

August Photo Tour (29)

Early August and I’m not jumping for joy at the heat-lover yields I’ve been getting. A couple of eggplants, a half-dozen almost-ripe cherry tomatoes, a few small summer squash and one good red pepper. But it’s looking like maybe, just maybe, a harvest is around the corner. And until then, I’m doing great on potatoes [Continue Reading...]

To Do In The Northwest Edible Garden: August 2012

Music Hardneck Garlic

My life-long gardener neighbor is in her 70s and she tells me this weather is unlike anything she’s ever seen before. But she says that every single month. That’s gardeners for ya, always distinguishing among the 50 shades of gray. I refer to the subtle variations of sky color in Seattle, of course. Why, what did you think [Continue Reading...]

The Terrible Tragedy of the Healthy Eater

Kale

I know you. We have a lot in common. You have been doing some reading and now you are pretty sure everything in the grocery store and your kitchen cupboards is going to kill you. Before Your Healthy Eating Internet Education: I eat pretty healthy. Check it out: whole grain crackers, veggie patties, prawns, broccoli. [Continue Reading...]