Saturday, 2 July 2016

I said I was tired but I didn't expect to crash

Which I seem to have done with a vengeance.  I slept through to 11:00am.  Well I must have needed it  Now have got to recover my mojo as oversleeping has completely jiggered the plans I did have.  Oh well such is life. These things are sent to try us.

We had fish and chips for dinner  - OH went and fetched them and came back.  A bit of a treat very nice it was too.

I have been stocking up with some bits and bobs on the food front and have ended up buying quite a bit of fruit.  Its fatal at this time of year and as they had a lot of fruit at very reasonable prices I decided to do a splurge and get as much jam made and out the way with early on. I tend to keep basics in like sugar both ordinary and jam at all times.  The jam pan makes this very easy. I also have the chutneys and the pickles to go yet.

I have also bought some Apricots for a plain Apricot Jam and also some with some Ameretto in which is lovely in a steamed pudding.  I also have some Raspberries for Raspberry jam.  I will make some Apple and Raspberry jam come September when the Bramley apples will be about again.  There will also be the brambles and wild fruits in the hedgerow which I also intend to make the most of.

One of the nicest things for me is that each jam represents a month or a season and when you have them in the middle of winter it brings both the taste and the memory of that particular time in the year flooding back. Plus there is something different on your table than everyone else.  I am making one batch of each different jam recipes which yields between four and six jars per batch this year.  I will then next year adjust how much I make in accordance with what I use - although I anticipate I will be making it all again and then some.  But we will see.

I have 2kg of plums ostensibly for one batch of plum jam and one batch of Christmas chutney.  I have a lovely recipe which needs to be made about now so that it matures in time for use over Christmas.  I have already ordered my pickled onions, and shallots.  I have also asked about Damsons.  I love Damsons especially for Damson and Orange jam, Damson Gin, and a whole other uses besides.  The people who run the veg shop are farm people who I have known for well over 30 years.  Caroline has said that she will keep her eyes peeled and if she comes across any she will get me some.  I have also started off the Rumptopf.

In general conversation at the veg shop I have also asked about Victoria plums, and greengages as I bottle these in syrup and they make a lovely pudding.  They believe that they will be ready at the end of August/September. I have recipes for  red fruit salad, white fruit salad, to bottle up as well.  I am doing the bottling so it gives me more room in the freezer for meat and veggies.

I also intend to bottle up some tomato juice (for use in bloody Mary's) and also apple juice for general drinking.  Now that I have the large pasteuriser I should be able to take advantage of any cheaper fruit. Strawberry syrup is also on the cards.

So I have plenty to do as usual but at least the pantry shelves are starting to fill up and I have control over the produce and how much sugar goes in.  This year come crab apple season I should also be able to put up my own pectin for use with the fruits that do not set so easily. So that will be something for nothing.

I have received a lovely little meat preserving book today as well which looks very good at first glance. Its called Smoking Curing and Drying by Turan Turan.  I shall report back once I have had a good look through.  I also have an Italian one on the way as well which has only just been released its called Preserving Italy by Domenica Marchetti and it looks as though it has an awful lot of lovely recipes in it; both are from Amazon

I also need to order some more syrup bottles as I am starting to get low.   Have plenty of caps just not enough bottles.  That will have to wait until next month though.

Right my projects await me there is no peace for the wicked.

Catch you soon.



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Meet the Moggies

  • Merlin (approx 18 months)
  • Squeak (approx 2 years)
  • Poppy (approx 16 years)
  • Tyson (approx 17 years)
  • Tinky (official name Clover approx 18 years)