By: Eve Thomas
Taste the past on your plate with a dollop of small-batch preserves.
Ditch your dayglow mustard. Reject that store-bought relish. Artisanal condiments are taking over at top tables around the world. Want proof? Take a page from Paul Virant’s The Preservation Kitchen. The Michelin-starred chef is famously passionate about preserves, and his cookbook includes recipes for smoked spring onion salsa verde and rhubarb-beer jam, as well as tips on safe canning. If you like what you see, sample the sauces at The Fairmont San Francisco, where main courses are complemented by house ketchup and tomatoapricot chutney, all made with minimal processing and ingredients picked at the peak of freshness. The trend isn’t just for star chefs, either. “A lot of people remember their grandma’s preserves, that full pantry,” says Camilla Wynne of Preservation Society. When she’s not making jars of Caesar celery and margarita marmalade, Wynne teaches canning classes in her Montreal, Canada, atelier – and she’s noticed a surge in popularity. “Everyone wants to eat locally now, but it can get pretty boring, unless you really like root vegetables. With preserves, there doesn’t have to be an off-season.”
(Photo Credit: Luis Albuquerque)