PUT ’EM UP! FRUIT
Sherri Brooks Vinton
Sherri Brooks Vinton
Sherri Brooks Vinton, author of Put ’em Up! and The Real Food Revival, is passionate about preserving local agriculture through everyday food choices. Her writing, talks, and hands-on workshops teach how to find, cook and preserve local, seasonal, farm-friendly food. Her website can be found atwww.sherribrooksvinton.com. She lives in Connecticut.
Sherri Brooks Vinton, the best-selling author of Put ’em Up!, turns her preserving and cooking talents to fruit, offering 80 recipes for canning, refrigerating, freezing, drying, and infusing. The exciting range of possibilities includes preserves both sweet (Orange Curd, Pear and Honey Preserves) and savory (Peach BBQ Mop, Meyer Lemon Gastrique). To ensure that your jars, bottles, and freezer bags are promptly opened and enjoyed, Sherri also provides 80 creative use ‘em up recipes for using preserved fruits in everything from Rhubarb Fool and Sautéed Duck Breast with Cherry Reduction to Spiced Chicken Salad made with Apricot Habanero Salsa. See a trailer for PUT ‘EM UP! FRUIT here.
“Sherri Vinton’s books are the finest, most aptly-detailed guides to food preservation that I know and use. As an orchard-keeper and fruit canner, the release of this new volume excites me to no end, because it is exactly what I need to move my own practice and business along. When I die, I don’t want to be cremated, or buried, I want someone to “put me up” using one of Sherri’s recipes…”
— Gary Nabhan, author, Coming Home to Eat and weird old uncle of the local food movement
Makes about 4 cups
Apricots are precious things. Their early spring bloom means that they are dangerously vulnerable to frost, which can rob tree owners of their prized crop for the entire season. So when apricots are in your market, it’s a good idea to take advantage. Stock up and make gobs of this classic jam while you can. Apricots don’t have a lot of pectin, so this jam can be a bit softer than most, a texture that I find pleasing with this delicate fruit. If you want a stiffer gel, Quick Apricot Jam (page 68), which contains added pectin, is the one for you.
½ cup water
¼ cup bottled lemon juice
2 pounds apricots
3 cups sugar
Combine the water and lemon juice in a large nonreactive pot. Pit the apricots, adding them directly to the lemon water as you go. Add the sugar and slowly bring to a boil, stirring constantly to prevent scorching. Reduce the heat and simmer until the gel stage is reached (see page 28), about 25 minutes.
Remove from the heat. Allow the jam to rest for 5 minutes, giving it an occasional gentle stir to release trapped air; it will thicken slightly. Skim off any foam.
Refrigerate: Cool, cover, and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.
Can: Use the boiling-water method as described on page 20. Ladle the jam into clean, hot 4-ounce or half-pint jars, leaving 1/4 inch of headspace between the top of the jam and the lid. Run a bubble tool along the insideof the glass to release trapped air. Wipe the rims clean; center lids on the jars and screw on jar bands until they are just fingertip-tight. Process the jars by submerging them in boiling water to cover by 2 inches for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat, remove the canner lid, and let the jars rest in the water for 5 minutes. Remove the jars and set aside for 24 hours. Check the seals, then store in a cool, dark place for up to 1 year.
Brandied Apricot Jam
Add 1/2 cup brandy to the jam as it nears the gel stage to bring a savory edge to this sweet treat.
Spring rolls are a great way to use up leftovers or odd bits from the crisper drawer. Anything tastes great in them, particularly when they are served with this dipping sauce made with your very own apricot jam! You can make up a big batch and freeze them. Then just cook them up — no defrosting necessary — and you will win the clever hostess prize at your next cocktail party.
Makes 15 rolls
1 cup diced leftover meat or seafood, such as chicken, pork, salmon, or shrimp
1 cup shredded cabbage or leftover sautéed greens
½ cup diced water chestnuts, radishes, or kohlrabi
½ cup shredded carrot, zucchini, or squash
2 tablespoons diced green onion or shallot
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
12 spring roll wrappers (available in the refrigerated section of your local grocery store and at Asian markets)
1 cup neutral-flavored vegetable oil, such as organic canola
Dipping Sauce Ingredients
¼ cup Classic Apricot Jam
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
1 teaspoon rice vinegar
Pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
To make the spring rolls, combine the meat, cabbage, water chestnuts, carrots, and green onion with the soy sauce and sesame oil in a large bowl, and mix well.
To prepare the rolls, lay out a wrapper in front of you so that it looks like a diamond. Brush the seams of the top triangle of the wrapper with water. Spoon 2 tablespoons of the filling into a log shape, 2 inches above the bottom of the wrapper. Starting with the point closest to you, roll the wrapper over the filling until you’ve reached the midpoint of the wrapper. Fold the far left and right points toward the middle and continue to roll into shape. Smooth the dampened seam with a finger to seal it, and place the roll on a baking sheet, seam side down. Repeat with the remaining rolls. (You can freeze them at this point by arranging on a baking sheet and freezing until solid, at least 4 hours and up to two days. Transfer frozen rolls to an airtight container until ready to use. Do not defrost before proceeding.)
Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Gently place the rolls in the hot oil, working in batches if necessary to avoid crowding the pan, and fry until browned on both sides, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Remove to paper towels or a flattened brown paper bag to drain.
Meanwhile, make the sauce by combining the jam, soy sauce, ginger, rice vinegar, and red pepper flakes, if using, in a small bowl and whisking together. Serve the rolls with the sauce.
These recipes may be reproduced with the following credit:
Recipes from Put ’em Up! Fruit by Sherri Brooks Vinton. (Storey Publishing; April 2013; $19.95/Trade Paperback: ISBN-13: 978-1612120249). http://www.storey.com/
Contact: Alee Marsh