Late summer means preserving everything, whether you grow your own food like I do in Catbird Cottageor you are the type to fall into reverie, dazzled by the countless the tables of colorful fruits and vegetables at the farmer’s market. At this time, my daily goals include preserving this bounty as much as possible. I make quick pickles, vinegar and fermented pickles, bottle gravy and summer jams, infuse salt, sugar, oils and vinegars with tender aromatics, and generally work on overdrive so when the days are cold and short I have the bright flavors of warmer days to keep me company. Here are some proven ways to capture the seasons, so when the cold winter days hit again, you can reap the benefits and enjoy the sunshine in a bottle.
Pickling less than ripe peaches is a fun way to move the season along. Pair them with cheeses or rich meats and keep a token of summer on hand.
It doesn’t have to be summer to pickle red onions. This pretty pink condiment is universally loved and versatile and only takes a few minutes to prepare.
Bright, floral shiso grows in abundance at my Hudson Valley cabin, and one way to wholesale manage it is to make this aromatic, punchy condiment. It pairs perfectly with so many things, from eggs and roasted meats to beans and noodles.
A boatload of mushrooms becomes a lush, meaty dish for your next brunch or lunch, and as a bonus, the recipe is vegan.
Mix in some summer stars, punchy aromatics and a nice piece of fish and candied. Its low-rise/high-yield combo makes it easy to entice, plus the leftover infused oil creates the base for future stews, rice and Pasta.
Whether it’s basil, spinach, arugula or garlic mustard, make a quick pesto to handle an overabundance of greens.
An impressive volume of summer squash crumbles after processing with a box grater, producing a nice riff on the summer sauce.
Make a quick, fresh tomato “sauce” with the best summer herbs and tomatoes, and add it to everything.
Do you have armfuls of fresh berries? Make compote, a rustic jam that’s perfect for spooning over ice cream, spreading on toast, topping overnight oats or yogurt, and even blending in cocktails.
Combine the puckery flavors used in pickling and the fruity sweetness for a new take on jam. Here’s a surprising and delicious spread that you’ll want to spread on everything.
More from Food52
How are you going to preserve the summer? Let us know below!