thoughts from New England

More updates needed November 20, 2006

Filed under: athomedad,cooking,jam — tim @ 3:33 pm

 I just looked at the calendar on my blog over there —> and realized that I need to update this thing more often. All apologies, but I’m sure I’ll be baking and cooking a lot this month for the upcoming holidays.

We’ve started a bowling club in the uv, it’s been pretty popular and a great way for people to be social and come together. I’m glad this has taken off as it has and I look forward to the fun times ahead. The uvScene has really come alive with the introduction of the uvMeet!

Tonight I’ll be getting some persimmon pulp and I am going to attempt to make a persimmon jam out of them. I cannot WAIT to try. I’m also going to attempt some watermelon jam as there’s some watermelon left in the freezer that needs to be used. Ideally I’d love to have some sort of market for this venture, but for now I’m just making some for my family and friends. Still, it’s exciting.

Thanksgiving is rapidly decending upon us and it looks like LP may actually eat some solid foods at the table! We’ll see how that goes, because she’s just now getting used to what a spoon looks like. She does like to gnaw on her spoon, though. In other news, I’ve been trying to get LP to take better naps in the daytime; she seems to not want to sleep in her crib. I don’t blame her, it’s a pretty boring place. But we’re establishing a bedtime routine and I’m following all the tricks of the trade; shushing, swaddling, rocking, singing, humming, but nothing will prepare her for laying in her crib alone. Any advice?


My home canning experiment November 15, 2006

Filed under: canning,cooking,food,jam,stupid ideas — tim @ 3:54 am

My home canning experiment

Originally uploaded by bakebakebake.

Yesterday I decided to revisit my canning because I had enough apples still left over to make one last batch of applesauce. I also wanted to attempt a new approach to my failed Pineapple Habenero Jam (which, as you may recall, ended up more like a glaze than a jam, but I wanted jam). I knew that it was taking quite a bit of energy to heat all that water on the electric stovetop, and it was a chilly morning so I thought….why not? Why not put the woodstove to my good use and kill two birds with one stone and use the woodstove to heat the water to can? Sounds good in theory, right?

Applesauce #3 and Unlucky Pineapple Habenero Jam Recipes also after the jump.



Canning and Jamming October 23, 2006

Filed under: canning,eat & drink,food,jam,yum-o — tim @ 5:12 pm


Originally uploaded by bakebakebake.

I finally got around to jamming and canning. Once I got all the gear I needed at Dan & Whit’s in Norwich, I was good to go. I washed everything and then sterilized it in the giant pot of water, then turned my attention to the jam. I told you all I was going to make Pineapple Habenero Jam, but you didn’t believe me!
The jam was fairly easy, and even though I didn’t follow all the directions exactly (I didn’t process everything in a blender, I diced it by hand), I think it’ll come out great. I didn’t know how many jars I’d be able to fill, but I thought it’d be about 7. Turns out I filled 9 easily — the other 2 jars I simply filled and refrigerated. The other 7 (that’s how many I sterilized and that’s how many can fit in the pot at once) were filled and then canned using the good ol’ water bath method. They sealed right up after 10 minutes and once they cooled I moved them into storage. They aren’t as “jam-like” as I’d like them to be, they’re rather gooey and more jelly-like, but that’s ok. They’ll make a great smear for chicken or pork, not to mention a great topper to mix with cream cheese! The ones we tried from the fridge today was great — I think the other sealed ones will solidify with time. I am very excited and I will be making more things to can very soon!

Speaking of things I made, the beer I made from the Mr. Beer kit is ready — and wow is it good. I am pretty impressed with it! Next time I will do the real deal, but this is a start in the right direction. It’s mostly front-heavy with its taste and lacking in a body; the flavor is crisp and bright, almost cidery (which is good).

There’s something wonderful about rediscovering these old traditions; some people take up knitting or crocheting, I do canning, preserving and gardening.