This blog is mainly a rambling kind of diary of the transition from smallholderwannabe to smallholder.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

In a pickle

I'm still preserving our harvest.  In addition to the list in the last post, I've also made:
  • runner bean chutney
  • rhubarb and apple and ginger chutney
  • pickled cucumber
  • pickled beans
  • blackberry and apple jam
  • rhubarb and apricot jam
And I'm not done yet.  That onion marmalade has not happened yet and the damsons are not ripe enough yet to do anything with them.

I had enough blackberries for a batch of blackberry and apple jam and a batch of blackberry and marrow jam.  The day I picked the blackberries, I was given a carrier bag of small windfall apples and a marrow.  So I thought I would put it all together.  I cooked the apple and marrow together and when I tasted it, I couldn't tell that there was marrow in it - it just tasted of apple.  I have to say that I was tired of preparing apple by the time I had enough for the jam.  2lbs of prepared apple = about 40 of the apples I was given...  I kept the nice looking peel and cores and simmered them in some water with the rest of the reasonable looking apples and I now have about 3 pints of apple juice/pectin stock in the fridge.  I sieved the apple pulp and that went into the rhubarb and apple and ginger chutney.  The rhubarb in that refused to soften and I had to fish out every last bit of the rhubarb and cook it in the microwave and then add it back into the chutney pan...  I do hope it is nice when it has matured enough to eat because it proved to be a lot of work.  But the price was right : )  And I have more things for the Christmas hampers.

Labels: ,

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

In a jam

I've been filling the store cupboard as well as getting ahead with Christmas hampers.  I've made:
  •  20 jars of pasta sauce from fresh tomatoes and it looks lovely.  It is such a bright orange colour  compared to sauces that I've made before from tinned plum tomatoes
  • gooseberry and elderflower jam - one of my absolute favourites
  • gooseberry and redcurrant jam
  • redcurrant jelly
  • strawberry jam
  • even more strawberry jam but this one has a softer set so it will be wonderful on icecream or with yoghurt
  • strawberry and rhubarb jam
  • four fruit marmalade
  • three fruit marmalade
  • elderflower cordial
  • dandelion honey
I'm hoping that there will be enough autumn fruiting raspberries to make just a little bit of jam for my husband because that is his favourite.  And hopefully we'll have a few of the little damson like plums because that is my top favourite jam. We had a storm when the tree was in flower so there is not the promise of as much fruit as I had hoped.  My son's apple tree is heavy laden so I'm getting hopeful about helping with the harvest there : )  Apple chutney, apple and onion pickle, apple and whatever chutney...  drool.  I love chutney!

Last year I did not get my hands on any kind of fruit in sufficient quantities to do more than a pudding so I think I am going a bit overboard with the jam this year to compensate.

Edited so that I have a complete list I can refer back to:
  • blackberry and raspberry jam
  • runner bean chutney
  • rhubarb and apple and ginger chutney
  • pickled cucumber
  • pickled beans
  • blackberry and apple jam
  • rhubarb and apricot jam
  • raspberry plus jam - raspberries plus a little bit of rhubarb and a handful of blackberries
  • lavender and lemon chutney
  • last of the summer jam - blackberries, sloes, wild damsons, crab apples, quinces, apples
  • damson jam
  • damson and orange jam
  • elderberry syrup
  • blackberry and elderberry jam
  • sloe and apple jam
  • hedgerow jelly
  • apple and pineapple jelly

Labels: ,