Category Archives: Fruits

Canning Nectarines: Things the USDA Doesn’t Tell You

When a box of big, flawless, fragrant, just-ripe nectarines from the Washington State Fruit Commission landed on my porch, I had to decide quickly how to preserve them. Most years I’ve made my nectarines and peaches into pickles, chutneys, and … Continue reading

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Preserves with a Nordic Touch

From the University of Minnesota Press comes a preserving cookbook especially for cold-climate cooks, whether they grow their own produce or shop at farmers’ markets and farm stands. Savory Sweet: Simple Preserves from a Northern Kitchen is a collection of … Continue reading

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A Better Way to Make Cherry Chutney

With some of the big, dark cherries the Washington State Fruit Commission sent me last year, I made a tasty chutney. It disappointed me, though. The cherries were so mild in flavor that the spices and vinegar overwhelmed them, and … Continue reading

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A New Fruit for Cooler Climates

If you’ve come upon fruiting blue honeysuckle bushes in your local garden center this year, you can thank two fruit-loving Oregonians, Jim Gilbert and Maxine Thompson. After one of his fruit-gathering trips to Russia in the 1990s, Jim introduced American … Continue reading

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From the New Joy of Pickling: Pickled Sliced Peaches

The Washington State Fruit Commission made my day again early this month, when a big box of fragrant, juicy peaches and nectarines was delivered to my front porch. The fruit was so tasty that I made small batches of plain … Continue reading

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Canned Cherries for a Flamboyant Dessert

Before cherry season comes to a close, I want to share with you a recipe I recently developed for the Washington State Fruit Commission, thanks to whom a big box of fresh cherries landed on my porch a few weeks … Continue reading

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Finally: A Good Thermometer for Home Preserving

  When home preservers have asked me what sort of thermometer they should use, I’ve never had good advice for them. I teach people to assess the readiness of their jams, jellies, and preserves by various tests: Does the liquid … Continue reading

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Persimmon Treats for the Holiday Cookie Platter

The day the sale of our farm closed, I picked nearly all the remaining fruit in the orchard, but I had to leave the persimmons. They were the biggest crop I’ve ever had, on a tree at least fifteen years … Continue reading

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The New Fruit Cellar

  In case you’ve been wondering why I haven’t written in so long, I’ll explain: We’ve been moving. This has involved renovating a little old bungalow, cleaning out a big house, a two-story garage, and a large barn, selling or … Continue reading

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Shrub, Part II: Quince Vinegar, Syrup, and Shrub

The various historical meanings of shrub have always fallen into two groups, the syrup, or pre-mix, and the finished drink. I’ve often made shrub as a finished drink but seldom as a pre-mix, because it makes more sense, to me, … Continue reading

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