Summer Cooking

If this post that my cooking idol, Lisa, shared on her blog the other day doesn't get you excited about the harvest, something must be wrong with you.

Lisa is an amazing cook, so you would be smart to adopt some of her recipes like I have. Her husband is quite the baker too. If you've been to the Great Harvest in Logan, you've already tasted some of his fine creations.

Eight years ago, Lisa taught me and my friend, Audrey, how to can. (Maybe you already knew the magic of canning, Audrey?) We canned Brigham City peaches. I had never used a pressure cooker and was a little scared of it.

I am making my second big batch of vegetable medley today (the rainy weather is perfect) and I am freezing more basil pesto in hopes that our supply will get us through the winter this year.

This really is my favorite time of year. I wish Rachel and Lucy were home to be my helpers, but they are already back to school. More on that next time.


Ramanda said...

I was needing this post! I've got veggies coming out of my ears! Thanks for the links too! I will definitely be making some vegetable medley tonight for din din! You are my harvesting hero!!!

Callisters said...

I need some serious motavation! I have wanted to do this so bad because for Christmas a got a camp chef so I can do it outside, but I have only 6 weeks left until Carson gets home and I decided I am tired! But I am going to check out your things and see if I can do it, please send more!

@udj said...

Yes, I remember that day. I wish I had more Lisa in my life. And you, I love thinking about gleening corn, apricots, and anything else we could get our hands on in the college days. But what am I talking about, our garden has done horrible this year, and we haven't eaten anything from it except pesto. And my fruit trees are to young and small. So I'm more then ever ready to gleen and beg for garden produce. Oh, by the way, I clicked on your blog from Becca's and when I did and saw the picture of James, I was confused and thought your blog mixed in with Lisa's as a computer malfunction or something.
See you soon for cape dyeing.

Aneesa Bee said...

How do you make fresh mozzarella? that looks so yummy? (I linked to your old post) and did you ever get the veggie medley to store well? Did you just freeze it? just wondering. I canned my first produce of the season last night--huckleberries!

emily ballard said...

Freezing vegetable medley works really well. We have frozen it in the past, but wanted to try canning because we had limited freezer space. . . until Steve bought me a freezer for Mother's Day. Freezing it is far superior to canning, so that's what we'll stick to.

emily ballard said...

Fresh Mozzarella Cheese by Chris Mortenson
(Makes one pound of cheese.)

1 G. whole milk. Pasturized/homogonized are fine, but do not use ultra-pasturized or ultra-homogonized
1 1/4 teaspoon citric acid
1/2 tablet rennet, dissolved in 1/4 C. warm water

Heat milk in heavy 1.5 G. pot, preferably stainless steel, to 88 degrees. Add citric acid and give it a stir. Leave it milk/acid at 88 to 91 degrees, using an easy read thermometer for 1 hour. (Milk will begin to curdle)

Dissolve the rennet in water and stir it into milk mixture. Let it stand for 1 more hour, maintaining temperature between 88 and 91 degrees.

Using a long kitchen knife, slice cuts across the stiffened milk mixture at 1/2 inch intervals all the way across the top of the pot, then turn the pot and slice at 1/2 inch intervals the other direction, making a checkerboard pattern, maintaining temperature. Let it sit for 10 minutes.

Gently stir curds every 10 minutes for 30 minutes, and then let the curds stand for 30 minutes longer, uncovered, undisturbed, at temperature.

Line a sieve with cheesecloth and set over a bowl. Using a ladle or slotted spoon, transfer curds to center of cheesecloth. Gather sides up over curds to form a sack and tie sides together using a piece of string as close to curds as possible but without squeezing curds. Suspend sack from knob or cupboard handle using string at least 4 inches from bottom of bowl. Whey will accumulate in bowl; discard it. Let curds hang for 3 hours at room temperature. Using the same technique, hang the sack in your refrigerator overnight.

The next morning, heat a large pot of heavily salted water to 170 degrees. Place a fourth of the curds into a shallow bowl and ladle about 6 cups of hot water over curds. Let it stand till curds start to meld together, about 2 minutes.

Gather curds together with a slotted spoon and remove from water. Work the cheese over the bowl in your hands and keep dipping it back in the water until the melded curds become cheese and stretches. Stretch and fold. Maintain it at high temperature (about 170) fold and stretch until cheese becomes a smooth and elastic disk.

Form into a ball shape and pinch the edges together. Place in cold water to solidify. Let it cool completely before eating.