Blog Archives

Nice Cans

The time is finally upon us.  Time to break out your pressure canner and make good wholesome magic for your family.  One of the best things about this ritual is that all winter long you will to enjoy the fresh tastes of summer. Your dishes will pop believe me.  A fun addition to feeling like your grandparents is a lower carbon footprint.  With all the draught and heat we have had this season you know getting food to your table will cost more.  Now more than ever is a wonderful time to take advantage of any local resources you may have in the way of tasty harvest.

Canning isn’t rocket science its really quite easy. However it will require you to have a great deal of patience if nothing else.  Oh yeah a mind for paying attention to detail works to ones advantage while preserving food.  I can recall not long ago when finding supplies for this lost art was a chore. Now it seems we are seeing more and more of these reappear in hardware and grocery stores.  It could arguably be one of the more positive things about losing annual household income. In recent years as the economy tightens so have of our minds keen on getting the most for our family on what we can afford.  Canning done right can be an investment in your winter season. I still marvel in the simplicity in pressure canning and how it takes no preservatives what so ever to preserve natures’ perfection

 Here is what you will want to do.  Sterilize 14-16 quart ball jars.  In a separate pot boil water and drop in the lids.  I canned corn this time which requires a pressure of 11 at 55 minutes.  This applies to those at 2000 feet or lower.   You will need to invest in a pressuer canner as hot water bath will only work on fruit and tomatoes.  I have been using the same Presto one I bought at our local Hardware store.  For the 90 bucks it pays off for sure.

Shuck, Blanch, and then cut corn off cob into a bowl.  Then ladle in corn leaving a solid 1-2 inches. Then pour water from the blanching into the jar a cup plus is good here.  Be sure to use a knife or something to run the air bubbles out and ensure you have enough water in the jar.  Be sure you have covered the goods with water.  Not doing so will result in a real bummer come February trust me. No one likes corn the color and taste of dirt.  When you tighten the bands on the lids go easy and let the pressure canner do it’s thing.  So just a quick snug no need to be He-Man here. 

Once you’ve hit you’re the 11 P.S.I. start to back the heat down.  After about 45 minutes turn off the heat and watch the pressure drop when the tab drops be careful and lift lid AWAY from you.  You need canning tongs (in Pic with cans)to remove jars so be sure to acquire these prior to attempting this.  Let sit on a towel over night, they are done.  I love the sound of the jars sealing Tknock! Times 7 so sweet a sound! 

Next up Tomatoes!  Hope you enjoyed the photos from our local farm.  Buy local, save farms, eat well and as always Have Fun!

Party for your mouth!

Just a quick photo post to share some awesome produce with you.  We are in the time when the hot house veggies are fully ripe and the field veggies start coming in.  My daughter and I took a walk to our local farm stand and I couldn’t help take a couple photos with my crumby phone.  I hope they show the color and vibrancy of our local bounty.  My taste buds wait all winter for this time of year and right now “its on”!    Enjoy your day, celebrate your family’s life and eat well over the weekend.  You deserve it!  Thanks for stopping by and have FUN! 

Your friend Daddy Adjustment

               

Twitter Dinner for Two?

This is a fun and easy recipe for a very tasty dinner that will leave them thinking you worked for hours.  It only takes 30 minute start to finish.  This dish has a fun side that has the sweet flavor of summer using abundant produce such as farm fresh green beans and cherry tomatoes. 

You can use skin on, bone in chicken or boneless skinless as I did here.  I should also share that both of these dished are a result of reading and watching cooking shows. The chicken dish is from  Every Day food magazine.  A Martha Stuart publication.  If you follow me on twitter you may remember a tweet of two about trying it.  I did make some changes-additions however. I believe recipes are like general directions, but it’s up to you to make your own trip an adventure.  So enjoy the journey and take chances.

 The Tuscan Green Beans are without question my favorite way to eat green beans.  Funny enough I just thought of three other ways to enjoy the veggie that keeps on giving.  (Homer Simpson moment, mmm green beans.)  This dish I first made after seeing it done on the show Extra Virgin with Gabriele Corcos on the Cooking Network.  Again I have made some changes but I like to give credit where credit is… well whatever he has a boat load of credit any way and he never responds to my obviously overtly fan based tweets. Don’t worry Team Daddy life is more than winning the who has the most celebrity followers on Twitter game.  

Please take a moment and help someone you love enjoy this dinner.  You will find it is easier to make than a bunch of imaginary friends on twitter and much better on the ego too. 

Thanks for stopping by and as always HAVE FUN! 

Your friend The Daddy Adjustment.

 Chicken, pre heat oven 425  Mix in bowl, 4 oz or so of goat cheese, hand full of rinsed pepperoncini peppers diced, handful of fresh thyme chopped, a drizzle of olive oil.  2 chicken breast cut with a paring knife.  One inch cut with a nice pocket inside the breast.

Stuff with filling.   In a cast or oven safe pan with lid sear on both sides over medium heat.  Then cover and bake in oven for 20 min or till you hit the 160 mark.  This time I had thick breasts from Costco so it took an extra 3 mins.  Hold on Homer Simpson again ah thick breast.  Easy Daddy this is a family Blog!  Tip #1, that pan is friggin hot!!! Use mits. Tip#2 use tooth picks if the chicken blows out as I had to do.

Green beans, just sauté a little chopped onion garlic in some heated Olive oil cut cherry tomatoes in half once onions run clear drop in tomatoes and salt.  Bleed them a bit and drop in green beans.  They will end up steaming through and will be done about the time your chicken has set for a few after pulling it out.  Oh yeah be sure to flip the chick and let it sit in the pan for a few after pulling it out of the oven.

Wicked Good Food in New England

Here in New England we have many different dialects and accents.  I know, I know, Chowda and pahking the car-ah and all.  But really there is much to behold than just that. There are wonderful subtle inflections your ear will relish with sheer giddy and delight.  Such as a true Vermont accent.  A real VT native proudly pronounces their highland home ground as “Vermoundt” It takes a special human to enjoy the simpler things in life such as “sitting in your puckin dooryard, nockin back a whole rack of Natty Light beer.  If more than one person is enjoying an activity as such, it would be appropriate to call out to them and say” Oh buy goawd you’re a real par of Mr. Dooley’s aint cha?”  Now when you hear a phrase like that, Mr. Dooley, you will know you are deep in New England and it’s time to rejoice. 

A little to the south in the foot hills of the Berkshire’s  of Massachusetts where I grew up , it was a common sight to see one of your friends dad’s driving a work van with a cigarette in one hand and a bottom shelf beef in the other.   “Randy get home now before I kick your ass so hard your pants split”.  It was then that I began to fear the “woodshed” as Randy’s dad would often say to us, “Think your so damn funny?  I’ll take ya out back and show ya what that woodshed ‘s good fer!”  Thank god I never found out. 

As far as the shore goes there are two kinds of people.  Those who eat Scallops and those who eat Scoulops.  Personally I don’t prefer either as they are the same thing. However, one thing I can share is that no matter how eccentric or rather extremely native all these people are.  If nothing more they were all connected to their environment in their own way.  

Summer has always been a time of celebration here.  A place that humans can learn the lessons of patience,and reaping what you sow.  The pure innocent joy of ingesting fresh produce.   Nostalgia seems to always be in keen style during the high sun season.  The colors are everywhere. Whether its flags flowing brightly, standing at attention down every main street or the start of peppers, tomatoes and squash appearing in little wooded stands at the end of dirt driveways.  It’s a feeling we all have around here. No matter what your accent is, or where your people came up through the generations. We all cherish our ground and are lifted up by its bounties.  I trust that even today these colors do not fade. My mind is bright with the taste of farm fresh strawberries. (I ate a pint in the past 24 hours) So please join me in appreciation of our land and know that we all eat the same food and walk the same ground.  Thanks for stopping by and Have Fun! 

You’re Friend 

The Daddy Adjustment

Canning the colors of summer

While holding my daughter yesterday we were looking out the window when we saw a wonderful red cardinal in our back yard.  His bright red color and sharp black markings cut an almost high definition scene against the pure white, glitter snow beneath him. It’s March here in New England and it is the first time we have had snow in our yard all year or at least since the 14 inches in October that nocked our whole area dark for over a week.  Super fun by the way with a 7 month pregnant wife.  

Watching the cardinal, it made my mind drift to summer and all the colors that go along with some of my favorite activities. Growing, canning and eating food, delicious fresh food, like the cardinal we humans need the real thing too. Watching him forage for something to eat it had me remember simple fresh ingredients make the BEST food.  That’s my cardinal rule.  

So it’s March with snow on the ground Daddy A.  What Gives?  I tell ya what gives…Canning it gives all year long my friend. One long day or so in the summer will result in the best tasting food all winter long.  Want to smash your carbon footprint to pieces? Try canning; just imagine the resources it takes to bring that can of imported tomatoes from Italy to your table.  The fruit from the sun of your back yard or local farmers market will be better I guaranty it.  You will want to start with a bushel or maybe just a half to get your feet wet, and cans too.  Tomatoes, apples, can be done with a simple hot water bath.  Anything else you will want to invest in a pressure canner.  I have a great one I got at ACE for under $100.  It will allow you to do other foods that require more pressure and time. 

The smell that envelopes your home when you crack one of these cans in the dead of winter is like pure summer sun.  We can a bushel of sweet corn every year and when we make our corn chowder it pops with that summers’ sweet corn flavor. Nice!

 There are no real preservatives associated with canning.   It is just water and a little salt, or lemon juice. That’s it.  As far as healthy eating goes, and saving money over all on excellent food.   I haven’t found a better way to nourish my family.  I also get to take pride in being a local hero supporting our local farms.  No Farms, No Food.  No Food?  Oh No!

So I think I am going to start planning out my garden, come up with a good plan for doing something more with all the other stuff I grow.  Hey what are you going to grow?  Why not think of canning this year?  Now is a great time to start.  I will do a follow up with some step by step, but until then feel free to ask any questions on the subject.  

The cardinal flew away looking for his mate with the bright beak, but not without leaving us with his little gifts…The cardinal rule.  Be grateful for what food lies at your feet!