My sister is a great gift giver and she knows me well. I am lucky that during her travels she seeks out some culinary gifts for me. When she visited San Francisco, she bought me The San Francisco Ferry Plaza Farmers’ Market Cookbook. On their yearly (or biyearly) trips to Seed Savers in Decorah, IA, she usually wags back a cookbook from their gift shop. One year it was Alice Waters’ The Art of Simple Food. One year it was Minnesota’s Bounty: The Farmers Market Cookbook by Beth Dooley (an autographed copy, no less). Most of these book gifts show up on my birthday. 🙂
To be truthful, I have only made a few things from these books. Last summer I made Balsamic-Basil Strawberry Jam from the Minnesota book. It is a keeper.
Last weekend we traveled to Livesay Orchards to buy some apples. We came home with about a peck. I really needed to use them up so I went back to Minnesota’s Bounty to peruse the apple section.
I had never made chutney, but I found a great recipe for an apple cranberry one in Minnesota’s Bounty and I knew my BiL would love this as a Christmas present. Dooley’s recipe made 10 pints, so I halved it. Otherwise, the recipe is true to what is in the book.
Apple Cranberry Chutney
from Minnesota’s Bounty by Beth Dooley
1 c. yellow onion, chopped
1 small shallot, chopped
1/8 c. shredded ginger
2 c. apple cider vinegar
1 2-inch stick cinnamon
6 c. apples, peeled, cored and chopped
1 c. fresh (frozen) cranberries
2 c. local honey
1/8 c. Dijon mustard
1 t. cayenne
1/2 t. fine sea salt
1 lb. dried raisins
Prepare a canner and sterilize jars and lids.
Combine the onions, shallot, ginger and a bit of the vinegar in a blender and puree. Transfer to a large stainless-steel pot and add the remaining vinegar, cinnamon stick, apples, cranberries, honey, mustard, cayenne and salt.
Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer until thickened, about 45 minutes. Add the dried raisins and cook another 10 minutes.
Remove cinnamon stick. Ladle the hot liquid into the prepared jars. Leave 1/2-inch headspace. Wipe the rims, center the lids, and screw on the bands.
Process the jars for 10 minutes in enough boiling water to cover the jars by 1-inch. Turn off the heat, remove the canner lid and allow the jars to remain in the cooling canner for 5 minutes. Remove jars. Cool for at least 12 hours before storing in a cool dark place.
This recipe makes about 5 pints.
Dooley writes that this “spicy winter chutney is wonderful with ham and pork or on top of a soft cheese.” To try out this recipe’s worth, I spooned some warm chutney on top of a Humboldt Fog. Delicious!
Besides this savory apple recipe, there is also a great sounding apple bundt cake with oatmeal and yogurt. You may see it here soon, too.
This book hits most every fruit that one could ever dream of (and possibly find at their farmers market) from the aforementioned apples to pears and quince and strawberries. The vegetable section is even more comprehensive and includes recipes for your average veggies plus bitter melon, bok choy, fiddleheads, leeks, ramps, parsnips and sunchokes. There are also sections on cheeses, grains, and meat and fish. The final section is entitled “Market Essentials” and includes instructions for basic mayo, vinaigrettes, stock and a “spirited whipped cream.” Obviously, Dooley also sings the praises of various Minnesota farmers markets as well as the benefits of shopping at them.
I love a cookbook that includes menus and Dooley ends her book with “Farmers Market Menus” for every possible time of the year. I may be revisiting this book in November to copy her Market Thanksgiving with “Holiday Turkey with Cranberry Sage Butter,” “Caramelized Brussels Sprouts,” and “Pear Galette.”
You don’t have to be from Minnesota to enjoy and learn from this book.