Saturday, August 28, 2021

Preserving with Pomona's Pectin, Updated Edition: Even More Revolutionary Low-Sugar, High-Flavor Method for Crafting and Canning Jams, Jellies, Conserves, and More

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Preserving with Pomona's Pectin is a tutorial guide with recipes developed and curated by Allison Carroll Duffy. The first edition was published in 2013. This reformatted second edition (with additional content) is due out 14th Sept 2021 from Quarto on their Fair Winds Press imprint. It's 192 pages and will be available in paperback and ebook formats. 

This is an exuberantly colorful guide to canning and preserving with a fresh, slightly retro vibe and lots of updated and tasty flavor combo preserves, jams, conserves, and jellies. These recipes are brand specific for Pomona's Pectin because it uses a different mechanism to gel/firm which doesn't rely on sugar so quite a number of the included recipes are lower sugar and use different sweeteners (honey, maple syrup, etc). 

The introduction covers some of the Jam making 101 theory: the differences between jam, jelly, conserve, marmalade and other preserves, what pectin is, how it works, and why Pomona's brand doesn't require extra sugar (low-methoxyl citrus pectin). There's a short bit on safety and a handy checklist of tools and supplies. The primer on general preserve crafting is comprehensive and explains the steps well. The primer contains numerous color illustrations showing each step with the explanations. The recipes are grouped in chapters thematically: jams, jellies, preserves, conserves, marmalades, alternative sweeteners, and pie fillings.

Recipes contain a title, description, yields, ingredients listed in a sidebar bullet list, and step by step directions. Recipe ingredients are given with both American standard and metric measurements (yay!). Special tips and alternatives are listed in highlighted text boxes with each recipe. Ingredients will mostly be easy to find at farmers markets and larger well stocked fruit and vegetable departments in grocery stores. All of these recipes rely on Pomona's Universal Pectin, which is almost exclusively marketed in North America. For readers outside those areas, the pectin can be bought online. Roughly 2/3rds of the recipes include a color photo showing the finished product. The serving suggestions are attractive and appropriate.

Five stars. This would be a good choice for library acquisition, cooks looking for low sugar and alternative sweetener preserves, garden groups, smallholders, gardeners, and foodies.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

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