Anyone who wishes to live a healthy or self-sufficient lifestyle wants the know how to overwinter the nutritious food supplied from their land. These techniques and skills were common up until the industrial revolution. That time in history marked the change of many things, and know-how for preserving our food is one of them! There’s been a real movement back toward nutrition and I’m proud to be part of it. So many young women are taking up drying, freezing and canning.
Our battle for nutrition is real! And I believe that is what old fashioned food preservation offers us, particularly for the long winter months when the garden is under a cover of water puddles or snow! Before we jump in, we’ve got to address the core issue. If we miss it, we miss everything! Take a peek at this post: The Key to Nutritiously Preserved Food.
While canning isn’t the #1 way to preserve nutritious food, it is a wholesome, handy way to provide for your home. It requires time! And if your time is money, it probably isn’t worthwhile. However, for a stay-at-home individual like myself who can’t work outside the home, it is a wonderful way to contribute to our efforts of staying healthy and getting ahead.
All the fruit-based recipes below are lightly sweetened with honey and are also pectin free. We believe in keeping our preserved goods natural, nutritious and low in added sugars. If you have a real sweet tooth, you’ll want to at least double the honey in each recipe.
Waterbath Canning Recipes
Fruits in Syrup
Favorite Canned Cherries–whole fruits in cherry juice, sweetened with a bit of honey
Plum Halves in Syrup -fruit halves in a honey syrup make a sweet and tangy treat!
Whole Plums & Honey Spice -pit your plums with this handy technique and cover with a honey-spiced syrup. You won’t regret it!
Sauces & Syrups
Apple Cider Syrup -an original, old-fashioned recipe for a powerfully-flavored, thick syrup
Applesauce with Rose Hips -want more vitamin C throughout the winter months? With both winter apples and rose hips coming ready the same time, you can do just that!
Blackberry Syrup -a sweet liquid to pour over pancakes, ice or add to other juices for a twist in the flavor!
Jams & Preserves
Pear Preserves (honey, spice and all things nice)-a golden spiced pear sauce poured over slices of fruit…this recipe must be added to your collection!
Thimble Berry Peach Preserves-the combination of thimble berries and peaches makes thick, chunky-like preserves with a strong pop of flavor! Or try out flavor-popping plain thimble jam, found here: Thimble Berry Jam
Winter Recipes (frozen fruit)
Cherry Jam -made with frozen cherries, learn how to quickly thicken this delicious topping without pectin or lemon juice!
Strawberry Honey Preserves-made with frozen fruit, learn how to quickly thicken preserves with nothing but berries and honey!
Dandelion Root Syrup -add to juices in winter or take as a syrup for its liver-boosting properties!
Carrots & Garlic Scapes -if your home is like mine, garlic has run out by the time the spring thinning of carrots comes ’round. Instead of purchasing garlic, we use garlic scapes! Not only do they add the flavor, but are delicious to eat!
Pressure Canning Recipes
The Old Birds… -want a method that requires very little prep work before tossing meat into jar? If you can wield a knife this recipe is for you.
Homesteader’s Broth -basic and simple broth made from birds or venison, I save the canned jars for nourishing winter soups and gravies.
Green Beans in the Pressure Canner -beans with all the flavor needed! Pop open a can and heat until warm. Serve directly.
Spicy Pulled Chicken-spicy pulled meat with curry and chili peppers. This pressure canning recipe converts old birds into ‘pulled chicken.’ Tastes great on a bun!
Tomatoes, Whole-while tomatoes may be water-bath or pressure canned, this recipe covers pressure canning specifically.
Tomato Puree -this recipes includes seeds, core and peel, all pureed into a nutritious liquid, a great addition to chili and winter soups
While canning is a nifty way to provide (particularly for the warm spring months before the garden is producing), one of the more nutritious options is fermenting raw goods. If you love dill pickles or tangy, salty goods, you’ll love the various ferments that are so easily made! If kept in a cold room, they will store well throughout the winter months and offer you easy-to-digest nutrition!
Fermenting is one of the most ancient methods of food preservation. I love the simple wisdom of God’s world, how the basic foods are often the best for us. I also find it ironic that as a wealthy nation we are returning to foods that 60 yrs ago, would have been considered the “poor man’s dish.” Simple, nurturing and delicious!
Apple Cider Vinegar -this technique makes the best tasting vinegar ever! Also see notes on bottling and continuous ferments.
Grape Vinegar -made from freshly pressed grapes, this is a light and delightful choice
Raspberry Vinegar-easy to make and even easier to ferment! Can be make with blackberries or mulberries.
Frugal Blackberry Vinegar-making syrups with your berries? Save the leftovers and make frugal berry vinegar! Raspberries & mulberries may also be used.
Cabbage & Carrot Kraut-an all-time favorite made from green cabbage, carrots, dill & garlic!
Chunked Root Vegetables-carrots, beets, radishes or other, ferment and store in a cold place. Eat all winter long for nutritional benefits!
Green Tomato Salsa-need to do something with those green tomatoes? If you have a cold place for overwintering ferments, use ’em up in this handy way!
Purple Kraut-a delicious ferment made of purple cabbage, beet, ginger and apples!
Tomatoes (whole) -ferment the year-end tomatoes and serve on winter cottage cheese or slice for salads and sandwiches.
Tomato and Parsley Salsa-year end tomatoes can be used in this recipe. Keep the goods in raw tomatoes, garlic & parsley alive for consumption all winter long!
Turnips & Dill-if you like turnips, grate and ferment a fall planting when frost hits!
Preserved in Vinegar
Garlic N’ Vinegar-submerge raw garlic in raw apple cider vinegar for preservation and use liquid as a tincture to ward off winter sickness!
Onions & Peppers-place onions and peppers in white or apple cider vinegar and store away in cold temperatures for winter soups
Cold Room Storage
What is a Cold Room? My favorite room in the house!
How Cold Rooms Vary from Root Cellars-don’t have a root cellar? If you live in a climate that offers proper winter temperatures, use a cold room in the basement!
Storing Raw Produce-proper seed choices, planting times, preparation & curing processes, storage methods and details.