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Leena Cans: Giardiniera for Ella’s Birthday!

By on May 15, 2013 in Canning, Leena Cooks, Pickles, Recipes, vegetable | 0 comments

Life has been a blur, friends. I have hardly had time to document, let alone blog about my culinary adventures! I have been canning up pickles galore for my daughter’s second birthday party picnic (garlic dill asparagus and pickled carrots to name a few). And having a two year old is trying wonderful and impossible a joy to can around. “What you doin, Mommy?” is both adorable and just an innocent question…the first two times it is asked. The next 37 time sort of make me want to stuff her adorableness into a mason jar, water bath can her and not open until her 18th birthday. So. Her birthday has a picnic theme because I’d rather cook my ass off BEFORE the party, not the day of, nor do I want to deal with utensils. The adults are getting a muffaletta sandwich, which is a popular New Orleans sandwich that basically consists of Italian cold cuts (I’m...

Leena Cans: Buying a pH meter and testing my onion jam

By on Aug 25, 2011 in Canning, Leena Cooks, pH of food | 8 comments

Time to test the pH of my water-bath canned onion jam For me, it all started last year around March. I was preparing for Tigress’s March Can Jam focusing on alliums, and was dying to can some caramelized onion jam. I must have read damn near ten canning cookbooks, and not one had an onion jam recipe. And with no tested, from a cookbook recipe to base my recipe off of, I had to resort to making a delicious onion relish. During the process, I learned that onions are a low-acid food and require a high amount of acid to be able to can with a water bath canner. This means it is trickier than usual to create a water bath onion jam recipe, because all of the ones I found were for pressure canning (and I don’t own a pressure cooker). Tigress even warned us that onions were prime subjects for botulism. Seeing that I was also seven months pregnant at the time and slower than a pig in...

Leena Cooks n Cans: Seasonal Guide to Canning!

By on Jan 24, 2011 in Canning, Leena Cooks | 1 comment

This whole week is the 4th birthday of Leena Eats This Blog! I have been sharing my food thoughts with y’all for 4 entire years,two countries and three major cities. Hot damn–that calls for some celebrating! To kick off Leena Eats This Birthday Week, I thought it might be fun to review over all the tastiness of the past four years, starting with a true passion of mine, home canning. I started canning in 2005, only a year before I started this blog, and to date have published 17 recipes on this blog and participated in one, year long can jam (read more about that here). So here is my 4 year birthday gift to you–my seasonal guide to canning, including all of my recipes, and a few from fellow bloggers that I find drool worthy. If you’d like to can all year round, or just would like to preserve your favorite season’s fruit, this guide’s for you. Enjoy!...

Leena Cooks n Cans: Spicy Sweet Chile Jam for Tigress Can Jam October

By on Oct 18, 2010 in Canning, Condiments, Jam, Leena Cooks, Savory | 3 comments

While living in Australia, I discovered a delicious food tradition in a local pub–an Asian-style sweet chili sauce. Aussies LOVE their sweet chili sauce on just about anything from chicken to burgers, but their favorite use is as a dip with sour cream and chives for potato wedges. The crispy potato gets coated in a layer of cooling sour cream followed by a light, slightly sweet, slightly spicy layer that is positively addicting. Three cities and one world-wide move later, and you will still find a bottle of Asian sweet chili sauce in my fridge, waiting for some fries or egg rolls. One of my favorite parts about knowing how to cook is learning how to create the dishes and condiments I am obsessed with, so I can have a constant supply. Needless to say, I was HELLA excited about this month’s can jam focus–chile peppers! Check out more food porn and my spicy sweet chile...

Leena Cooks n Cans: Raspberry Jam

By on Sep 27, 2010 in Canning, Jam, Leena Cooks, Sweet | 1 comment

As I get older, one of the things I love most about being an adult is the ability to make the rules in your own life. Want to stay up all night playing video games? Do it. Pizza for breakfast? Why not! I particular enjoy making up holiday food traditions, ones I will force my future children to follow for years to come, whether they enjoy it or not. The first one I’ve decided on? Homemade brioche doughnuts filled with raspberry jam for Christmas morning. To me, nothing says decadence and simplicity more than a proper raspberry jelly doughnut, and after making some with my old culinary school friends in Chicago, I was hooked. I knew it had to be a special, once a year only sort of treat, because fried foods and my ibs aren’t the best of friends, so Christmas it was. And what is the key ingredient in raspberry jelly doughnuts? Say it with me–RASPBERRY JELLY! But since I...