Buoyed by the success of making freezer jam we started looking around to see what other common fridge staples we might be able to make ourselves. We didn't have to look any further than the engaging Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It. Although not specifically targeted at parents or children, it's filled with food that your children will love to eat and many that they will love to help you make.
The driving philosophy of the book is that while more and more of us are cooking meals from scratch and seeking out the best and freshest ingredients we can find, there are still so many foods and ingredients that we purchase without questioning whether we could make them ourselves. We love author Karen Solomon's description of her aim for the book: "I'd always hoped to find those Girl Scout blueprints to the kitchen - the culinary equivalent of knot tying, fire starting, and good citizenship - that would be the building blocks for everyday eating...Here, I hope to share the joy of real, obtainable DIY kitchen crafting projects at their best."
While some of the recipes in Jam It require a bit of a time investment, many can be made in just an hour or an afternoon. Here are some we think have particular kid-appeal: peanut butter cups, potato chips (baked and fried versions), ketchup, watermelon pops, yogurt cheese, lemon curd, apple fruit leather, marshmallows, graham crackers and chocolate fudge pops. Yum...
We can't think of a better way to spend an afternoon this summer than to try some of these culinary projects and we think your kids will enjoy the fun and fulfillment of helping you. And, of course, there's a tasty reward at the end. You can find Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It at your local bookshop or online.
(p.s. The Kitchn has also reviewed Jam It.)
(Mouthwatering photos by Jennifer Martiné)