Driven by the recession; the need for healthier, chemical-free food,and taste, people everywhere are preserving the abundance of fruits, vegetables, and herbs harvested from their garden (or someone else's). You don’t even have to grow your own to preserve freshness; non-gardeners too are learning to preserve with locally grown produce bought from local markets. Targeted at anyone who wants to capture the flavor of freshness, whether it’s from making tomato sauce, drying herbs, or preserving jams and jellies.


Background: The "Yes, You Can!" book is like a Ball Canning Guide meets "The Pioneer Woman" meets "Our Best Bites".  Thus it equals total heaven for me.  Up to date recommendations on modern processing times and proper procedures like the Ball guides include, beautiful picture tutorials like I love from The Pioneer Woman, and helpful tips along the way like Our Best Bites provides with so many of their recipes.  Whether you are an expert at canning and other home preservation techniques, or a beginner who is a little intimidated to get started on all of this ... this book will have something for you!

What I Liked: Yes, You Can! really makes you feel like your mom or grandma is right beside you in the kitchen showing you step-by-step how to do everything and giving you little tidbits of useful info along the way.  I LOVE how the book is laid out.  There are sections on all kinds of preservation techniques so you can get ambitious and try more than just canning.  Each section includes helpful information on the tools you will need for that particular preservation method, then a general step-by-step guide on how to do it, followed by specific and very detailed info on particular foods including great recipes to use.

My Favorite Part: I absolutely love how Daniel Gasteiger gives helpful and detailed information from someone who has actually DONE all of these things.  I always wonder how many pounds or cups of fruit are needed to make a certain amount of quarts.  He includes that.  He also gives recommendations on how much to grow in your garden based on how much you want to preserve.  I love this type of information as it saves me from so much trial and error and experimentation.  Plus I always forget to write things like that down for the future.  There are sooo many tips and tricks included, I feel like whenever I am working on a project he will be right there to make sure I do every little thing right.

Feedback: The tagline of Yes, You Can! is "The Modern Step-by-Step Guide to Preserving Food" and I think that is a great description.  The only thing that was missing was information on preserving foods besides product.  I think meats fit in with canning, freezing, dehydrating, etc. and it would be a wonderful addition (or sequel) to the book to add information about those process in the same format.  I would LOVE it!

Summary: This book has become my new go-to book whenever I am doing any home preservation.  If you want to get a really good feel for the book go check out the preview on  If you click the "Look Inside" button you can see a ton of the book.  Flip through to chapter 3 and you will see all of the things I mention in the "What I Like" paragraph above.  You definitely want to have Yes, You Can! on your bookshelf if you are into self reliance!