Monday, June 13, 2011

My Weekend

This past weekend my mother-in-law and I went to my favorite green grocer.  I've mentioned before how they sell produce in berry box/cases for $1-2.50 a box.  Well, we went a little crazy and bought almost 20 boxes of fruit and vegetables.
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Some of our bounty from the green grocer
My dining room table became the processing place and after two days we finished with tons of prepped veggies and fruit in freezer bags and three different kinds of jam.  We had a lot of fun laughing and enjoying each other's company.
I made strawberry/kiwi jam, kiwi jam, and a mixed fruit jam.  The recipes for the strawberry/kiwi jam and kiwi jam are from my favorite Ball Blue Book Guide to Home Canning, Freezing, and Dehydration.  The recipe book is printing through the Alltrista Corporation in Muncie, Indiana.  The strawberry/kiwi jam is simple to make, which always makes it easier to make it again and again.

STRAWBERRY/KIWI JAM:

3 cups crushed strawberries
3 kiwi, peeled and diced
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon minced crystallized ginger (I used grated fresh ginger root)
1 package powdered pectin
5 cups sugar

Combine strawberries, kiwi, lemon juice, ginger, and pectin in a large saucepot.  Bring to a boil, stirring frequently.  Add sugar, stirring until dissolved.  Return to a rolling boil.  Boil hard 1 minute, stirring constantly.  Remove from heat.  Skim foam if necessary.  Ladle hot jam into hot jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace.  Adjust two-piece caps.  Process 10 minutes in a boiling-water canner.  Yield: about 6 half-pints.

KIWI JAM:

3 cups chopped kiwi
1 package powdered pectin
1 cup unsweetened pineapple juice (I used 1/3 cup lemon juice)
4 cups sugar

Combine kiwi, pectin, and pineapple juice in a large saucepot.  Bring to a boil, stirring constantly.  Add sugar, stirring until dissolved.  Return to a rolling boil.  Boil 1 minute, stirring constantly.  Remove from heat.  Skim foam if necessary.  Ladle hot jam into hot jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace.  Adjust two-piece caps. Process 10 minutes in a boiling water canner.  Yield: about 4 half-pints.

My multi-fruit jam was a combination of apples, nectarines, peaches, apricots, and plums.  I did not follow a particular recipe, but instead kind of followed the idea of applesauce.  I add cloves and sugar to the mix and my sons can hardly wait to open a jar.

Overall, my mother-in-law and I bought more than 22 different kinds of fruits and veggies.  I know it seems crazy.  The best thing is between my canning and our chest freezer we are set for a long time.  I love it.

I spent today working in the garden and planting the last items and putting up the last section of fence.  The wild critters have been getting into my compost so I had to put a stop to it before someone or something was hurt.
Hope your week is wonderful.
Sending love and veggies from the farm!
xo

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