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03 July 2007 @ 08:18 pm
Jam Blog  
I am an incredibly blessed person.  This isn't a new realization; on some level, I know this to be true daily.  However, I do have days where I get sucked into a "me" depression spiral.  Thankfully, these days are balanced by the knowledge that I serve a merciful and benevolent God who gives me all the grace I could possibly ask for.  He's pretty incredible.  Mad props to God, yo.

Meanwhile, under the cut, it's pretty image intensive.  Watch out!

I've spent the last two days with my very sweet and patient MIL making jam.  There are lots of wild plum thickets down at our place in Childress, (aptly named Plum Creek) and the in-laws picked 2 five lb. buckets full of the tart fruit.  I've been bugging MIL to show me how to make jelly or can vegetables for 9 years, now (I'm not sure why.  Pleasant memories of my Granny's pickes, perhaps?).  

Anyway, between the plum thickets and the peach trees (Who know we had those?  Not me!) we canned 57 half-pint jars of plum jam and 6 jars of peach preserves.  I broke my 'no sugar' rule for the first time in 16 months to taste them and they are SO GOOD.  Truly.  Anyone want some jam?

We started with this...

Then cook them...

Then strain the CRAP out of them...

Then add fruit pectin and a metric ton of sugar...  boil...

Put it into jars...

Put the lids on...                                                                             Place them in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes...

And this is the result.  This isn't even all of them!  It was lots of fun...  Wish you'd been there, Jennifer!

Random FYI:  I'm the biggest dork EVER.  I was doing a crossword at the pool today where #63 across was "spoke snake" and had 6 letters.  My first thought?  Parseltongue won't fit there.  Answer:  hissed.  =P
I am:: home
I feel:: tiredtired
Comic Book Goddess: D/G - text pink is new blackrainpuddle13 on July 4th, 2007 02:04 am (UTC)
ME! I'd kill for either or both if you want to give some up!
Carrie Leighcarrie_leigh on July 4th, 2007 02:14 am (UTC)
Done and done. I have something to get in the mail for you, anyway... belated birthday fun...:D
Comic Book Goddessrainpuddle13 on July 4th, 2007 02:18 am (UTC)
Awwah, you're so sweet! Thank you!!! *hugs*
Lyndsie Fenele: Sylarlyndsiefenele on July 4th, 2007 02:19 am (UTC)
OOOOH! We used to can a lot when I was a kid. Not usually jam, but the tomatoes and pears and things that grew in our garden. It was so much fun, and my dad makes the best homemade tomato sauce. In fact, the canning pot with the inserts and tongs has somehow ended up in my room at dad's house as of late.

Did I mention that I grew up in the city/suburbs, and you have to drive at least thirty minutes to get to anything resembling the country? Yeah, we were that kind of family. (When I was six or seven, I remember going with Greenpeace to protest incinerators in the metro Detroit area.)

Yum, homemade jam. We once picked cherries in Illinois with my grandma, and then my great-aunt made jam of them. Grandma had all these antique cherry pitters that we used on them. Actually, her whole kitchen was full of antique kitchen implements, several thousand dollars worth. I really should have asked for one of them when we were there a few weeks ago for her funeral; it's not too late, though - I'll email my aunt now. (My mom and aunt gave her the house and everything in it.)

Enjoy the jam occasionally, even if it does break your diet. (Much how I can tell I'm still allergic to wheat, but eat it anyway now and then.)
Lyndsie Fenele: Wake uplyndsiefenele on July 4th, 2007 02:20 am (UTC)
Damn, I think I clicked the wrong reply button. Sorry!
Carrie Leigh: Carrie & Emilycarrie_leigh on July 4th, 2007 02:29 am (UTC)
MIL has promised to show me how to make other things, too, like black-eyed peas, beans and chow chow (Which is a Southern relish-type thing). I can't wait!

My grandma had a bunch of that stuff, too. I wonder what happened to it all.

I don't eat bread, and I've been brainstorming for what I can eat this jam on. Maybe smear some peanut butter and jam on a banana? I'm still thinking.
Lyndsie Fenelelyndsiefenele on July 4th, 2007 02:34 am (UTC)
That is tough, and I never quite solved the dilemma. I still have some jam from pre-no-bread days. Although, I was making bread out of chickpea and other flours, so I used a little then. Appetizing, no? You could maybe put some in oatmeal or rice cereal, unless you also don't eat that. (I do, it's my staple.) I admit it's basically the same thing as my friend's infant eats...

I just hope my aunt hasn't foisted off the antiques on my grandma's brother yet. That was the deal, since he was an antiques dealer in one of his past jobs (though it was dolls, not kitchen implements). Now he works in a forklift factory.

It cracked me up when the man who was all about his boots and cowboy hat started collecting antique dolls!
Carrie Leighcarrie_leigh on July 4th, 2007 12:40 pm (UTC)
Sereniteys suggested rice cakes. I'm gonna give it a go. Oatmeal is a good idea, too. Yum... Food to look forward to.

The boots, hat & dolls paints quite a picture!
Jandy the Gnome Whisperer: D/G Portrait with Tiesjandjsalmon on July 4th, 2007 02:09 am (UTC)
I love your Jam blog. You are amazing - have I told you that yet?
Carrie Leighcarrie_leigh on July 4th, 2007 02:15 am (UTC)
Aw, thanks! I think you're pretty rockin', too. That was a wonderful rec letter, by the way!
Jandy the Gnome Whisperer: Culpae Addictjandjsalmon on July 4th, 2007 04:45 am (UTC)
You liked that, eh? I'm glad. I never know - especially if I was the one who hunted down the recs. Not everyone will like what I choose, you know?
Carrie Leigh: Extremely stubborn and suspicioucarrie_leigh on July 4th, 2007 12:33 pm (UTC)
We have similar tastes. And if they don't like it, they have the option not to read it, right?
ex_justduch on July 4th, 2007 02:28 am (UTC)
That was totally my first thought.....parseltongue......
::twitches till 7::
Carrie Leigh: Deathly Hallows '07carrie_leigh on July 4th, 2007 02:30 am (UTC)
It actually took me a few moments to realize that the crossword puzzle had nothing to do with Harry Potter. *eye roll*

I know. Book 7 can NOT get here soon enough.
ex_justduch on July 4th, 2007 02:34 am (UTC)
I can see myself doing that too...I said "remusly" at work today and was looked at like, wtf?
I just read them all again and finished HBP last night. ::is in withdraw::

No it can't and if people don't stop posting "spoilers", I shall have to vacate l because they ruined HBP las time. :(
Carrie Leigh: Deathly Hallows '07carrie_leigh on July 4th, 2007 02:43 am (UTC)
I'm in the middle of HBP, and miraculously, I haven't seen any spoilers!
Katemugglechump on July 4th, 2007 03:18 am (UTC)
I would love you forever and a day if you sent me yummy homemade jam. *big grins* I don't really cook, but I'd send you something in return. Virginia wine? Lottery tickets? Whatever.
Carrie Leigh: degascarrie_leigh on July 4th, 2007 12:34 pm (UTC)
Fantastic. Send your address to persephone3333@gmail.com!
sereniteys: kaylee2sereniteys on July 4th, 2007 06:13 am (UTC)
I love homemade jam. We make apricot jam every summer. To die for. So much better than the stuff you buy up the shops as grandpa just throws half apricots in so you get nice chunks.

Enjoy your lovely jam! You could try jam on rice cakes. They go well with apricots, plum should be nice too. (??)

And the Parseltongue thing completely normal. I had a cold last month and found myself thinking I just needed a little bit of pepperup potion and the damn thing would go back to where it came from!
Carrie Leigh: Cinically Insanecarrie_leigh on July 4th, 2007 12:36 pm (UTC)
Rice cakes! I haven't though about those in years... good idea.

Really, if DH doesn't come out soon, I'm going to go crazy thinking about it.
kristibiscikristibisci on July 4th, 2007 12:33 pm (UTC)
I used to love making strawberry jam with my mom and grandma after picking them ourselves, even though I didn't like eating it back then. I'm loving all the food posts that you're doing, btw. I'm very hungry now!
Carrie Leigh: Chicago - happycarrie_leigh on July 4th, 2007 12:42 pm (UTC)
I wish we had access to lots of strawberries, here. They don't grow here. Something about the soil being too alkaline? But they're $5 a package at the grocery store, so if I bought enough to can, they'd end up being a million dollars a jar! That kind of defeats the purpose.
kristibiscikristibisci on July 4th, 2007 01:16 pm (UTC)
We have no shortage of strawberries here but the growing season is very short. My mom really takes advantage of it. I think she's made strawberry shortcake three times in the last two weeks! We try to justify it by thinking that since angel foodcake is fat free, the whipped cream just balances it out. ;) Anyway, your preserves look so yummsy! I want some!
Carrie Leighcarrie_leigh on July 5th, 2007 12:07 pm (UTC)
You do live in Canada, don't you?
dragonsangel68dragonsangel68 on July 4th, 2007 12:45 pm (UTC)
I think customs might have a problem with homemade jam *smites them* You are so good at all this stuff! I love homemade jam, but I don't have the patience :/

Parseltongue won't fit there *giggles*
Carrie Leigh: Darth Suckscarrie_leigh on July 4th, 2007 12:53 pm (UTC)
Hmph. As if I could fit a weapon of mass destruction in a jar of jam. The just have to ruin it for everyone don't they? I have a RL Canadian friend and her mom can't send her baked goods, or even Canadian brand store bought perishables. *grumbles at the government*

The book needs to come out already so I can stop obsessing over it!
dragonsangel68dragonsangel68 on July 4th, 2007 12:57 pm (UTC)
Oh, but they see it as far worse. Fresh produce is (apparently) far more destructive than weapons, even if they've been preserved *rolls eyes*

I'm going to be a mess by the release date!
O Demanding One: Inspire: Grace Like Rain...heyurs on July 15th, 2009 02:31 am (UTC)

This took me back to my Little House days! :D We used to help with the canning at my Grands. Vegetables and jellies and jams and remember the apple butter? YUM! We also used to make grape juice with the grapes from the vines down by the garden. My family loves chow-chow...not me. :/ But I do love the 'Bread & Butter' pickles that we made. They went great with pinto beans and cornbread! :D

I'd love some jam and preserves if you have it to spare. Homemade is the best. ♥

Thanks for this wonderful share, Carrie. *hugs you*