For Christmas this year, my brother and his wife gave Mr. Scrimp and I a copy of Lianna Krissoff's Canning for a New Generation. Being readers of Scrimpalicious, they knew about my sometime love affair with canning, and also that Mr. Scrimp and I tend to be, well, I hate the word "foodie" because it's a silly-sounding word, but if the shoe fits...
First of all, this book is beautiful. It's worth owning just for the eye candy, in my opinion. From the appealing cover to the photographs sprinkled lavishly throughout, this book is just pretty. I would (and already have) just leave it on my coffee table for people to flip through as an aesthetic pleasure.
And then there are the recipes. This is not your mom or grandma's canning book, unless your mom regularly made things like tomato and cashew chutney, pickled fennel with orange and mint, and pear, clementine, and pecan conserve. I was hard-pressed to find a single recipe that didn't look good, from the most basic strawberry jams to the really crazy hipster-chic mixes of flavors and ingredients.
I take a particular pleasure also in the admonishments against store-bought pectins (there is a stock recipe for making homemade green apple pectin which is used in nearly every recipe), and the fact that the book is scattered with recipes both savory and sweet made using the food that the reader will hopefully be canning posthaste. Not only that, but the book's recipes are arranged by season, meaning that you can treat it, essentially, as a daily workbook to get you through a year's worth of home-preserved fruits and vegetables, taking advantage of them while they're at their peak freshness and cheapness, and then moving on to the next harvest.
You're going to be hearing a lot more from me about this book in the future, because I'm planning to work through it and try pretty much all the recipes over the next year or two or three.
As it is, so far I've made one recipe (Cabernet Sauvignon Jelly, page 241) and I altered it so much that it barely counts as following the recipe, although I did locate the author's blog and consult with her about my changes. She was incredibly gracious about my desire to alter one of her recipes, and offered several helpful suggestions.
I'm not going to share the Cabernet recipe, either hers or my modified version, until I've made it again. It was delicious (delicious) but it didn't taste quite how I wanted it to taste, either, and I want to try it one more time with a few changes before I share it with everybody.
Until then, though, buy this, or check it out of the library, or what you will. It's a pleasure just to read it.