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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Saturday, January 05, 2008

Important Canning Note & Last Night's Dinner - Sweet & Sour Pork Loin Ribs

Things are a little slow in the kitchen right now so a bit of housekeeping and chit chat.

An Important Note on Canning Recipes: Altitude Adjustments
It has been brought to my attention that I haven't mentioned the need to adjust processing times if using a boiling water bath (BWB) canner or pressure canner at altitudes higher than 1,000 ft (305 M) above sea level. This is an oversight on my part based on the assumption that anyone using my recipes would know to adjust the processing if they live at a higher altitude. We live below 1,000 ft (305 M) above sea level so like many canning recipes found online, mine are written to be processed at that level. At higher altitudes, the length of processing needs to be increased BWB canning and the pressure needs to be increased for pressure canning.

I created the altitude adjustment chart image in Photoshop CS2 using USDA recommendations and information from the charts found here. I liked the incorporation of both Imperial and Metric measurements for a universally useful resource. I will be going through the archives to note the canning recipes with a link back to my chart but this will take some time. I will also be adding a link in the sidebar to the altitude adjustment chart.

Tossed Salad

A good portion of the meals entries on this blog don't include pictures of sides like salads and the other foods that go into making our meals. Salads are one of those sides that are usually served at most dinners and quite often are served by themselves for dinner. This time of year really makes me yearn for fresh picked salad greens. Being in a cold winter climate that isn't always possible unless you grow a few pots of salad greens on a windowsill. Unfortunately I don't have salad greens grown but have herbs planted in containers. I started one larger pot of mescalin mix so hopefully will be clipping that in another couple of weeks. So we are relying on store bought greens for salads.

This tossed salad was made with iceberg lettuce as a base. Iceberg lettuce while popular for the crunch has very little nutritional value. It's not something that I grow or use very often. When I do, I like pairing it with darker raw green vegetables like sweet peppers and broccoli. Cucumbers, tomatoes, sliced mushrooms and just a little cheddar cheese completed the toppings. A sun dried tomato and oregano dressing was the finishing touch.

Sweet & Sour Pork Loin Ribs

On my quest to use one food item from the pantry and another from the freezer, I decided on pork loin ribs. These are large meaty ribs with no bones so ends up being a rather frugal choice for meat. It reheats well and can easily be froze.

This was a rather large package of pork loin ribs at just under 11 kg (5 lb). I decided to use a sweet and sour sauce on the ribs much the same I do with chicken wings. This is a slow cook process. The sweet and sour sauce is ideal for chicken or pork and works just as well in a slow cooker as a roaster although it does not caramelize to the same degree in a slow cooker.

Method: The meat goes in a covered roaster with just about a 250 ml (1 c) water at 135ºC (275ºF) for about 3 hours. It is important to leave the meat alone without lifting the lid. At the end of 3 hours, remove the roaster and drain most of the liquid. Reserve the liquid for cooking rice. Mix the sauce (recipe follows) then pour over the meat. For this amount of meat I used 2.5 times the recipe amounts. Increase temperature to 150º (300ºF) for about one hour. Increase temperature to 177ºC (350ºF), remove lid and continue cooking for about 30 minutes. Remove the meat from the pan to a serving platter. Drizzle sauce over top.

Sweet & Sour Sauce

1 c ketchup
¼ c vinegar
¼ c brown sugar
1 tbsp soy sauce
½ finely chopped onion
1 tsp prepared mustard

Mix together. Pour over meat and bake or roast.
*Recipe easily doubles.

2 food lovers commented:

jayedee said...

the sweet and sour ribs sound awesome! it's ribs tonight in the dewitt house too........but.....i gave my son a copy of the barbecue bible for christmas so he has officially taken over the grill for the time being. i might be mistaken, but i thought i heard him mumbling something about dry rubs and mopping sauce in his sleep last night!

Debbi said...

I was wondering if you have ever canned your Sweet and Sour Sauce?
It sounds like sometime I would like to do, but you can alot more than I do....