Monday, July 13, 2009

damn she made jam


It's raspberry season at Green Girl's house--she's picked pail after pail of succulent berries and, determined to fulfill her longtime dream of learning to can, she consulted the Jam Master. The Jam Master approved the plan (torn from the inside of the Sure Jell package) and lent Green Girl a boiling water canner. A dozen Ball jars with brand spanking new lids at the ready, Green Girl and her crew began the smashing of the berries, the boiling of the berries, the drowning in sugar of the berries. Voila!

Heady with her success of two batches (the lids sealed! the jam set!), Green Girl has HUGE aspirations--jars of applesauce, spaghetti sauce, peaches and beans! She envisions a pantry filled with glass jars ready for the taking. She'll give away shiny half-pint jars of homemade jam to friends and family at holidays. She'll make up clever labels detailing the ingredients (Raspberry Jam--Ingredients: homegrown organic raspberries (sunshine, rain, soil), sugar, Sure Jell, love). She'll buy her own boiling water canner.

It's a strange thing, the power of making her own jam. She doesn't have to buy jam from the store now. Green Girl lives off the land, growing and preserving her own. Sure, it's a small step in her quest of sustainable living, but from homegrown preserves the sky's the limit! Fresh from the teat goat's milk, anyone? Handspun yarn knit into sweaters and mittens? Loaves of bread from grain grown and ground right here on the "Estate?"

Making one's own sure make a gal proud (and a little irrational). Spill it, what homemade thing has you bragging it up these days?

P.S. Preserving and Cooking are not the same--Green Girl likes to can (and damn, she can can!). But she still hates to cook.

23 comments:

  1. I made rhubarb jam last year just like my mom always did. I was so proud of myself. I felt like a real mom. :)
    I also love baking. Makes me feel good.

    Your jam looks delish!

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  2. I am hoping that I'll get enough tomatoes from my garden this summer to can sauces for the coming year. I will definitely be freezing lots of basil paste and hopefully plenty of pumpkin puree. This fall, we'll move on to applesauce. Yum.

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  3. I always have great intentions. I might freeze some sweet corn...so good!

    I did not know that you could buy stewed tomatoes in the grocery store until I was in college. I guess I just thought everybody had them in the basement.

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  4. I hang my head in shame because the raspberries around here all come in clam shells. Your post has me thinking happy thoughts of produce that exists free from plastic bins or bags. I also have an irrational desire to make things on which one may spread jam.

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  5. Since I live in the city, my "homegrown" projects are more of the crafty type.

    I had some yarn that was a gift from a former boss. She bought the wool at a farm that raised the sheep, spun and dyed the yarn.
    There wasn't enough to make a sweater but I'm 90% done with knitting a large teddy bear.

    Also, I designed and made the 50 invitations for my Mom's 75th birthday party. My sister-in-law took the design minus the words to the bakery that is making the cake to match the invitations.

    I miss the days when I would process and freeze tons of zucchini to make muffins and breads all winter.

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  6. That's awesome! I've always been a little daunted by that whole process - all the boiling and sterilizing...
    Although, we have had fun making homemade soaps.

    That jam looks beautiful!

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  7. When you hit up the store to get your boiling water canner (I suggest Fleet...they have the best prices and wait until you see all the other canning stuff!!! JOY!) you MUST get the Ball canning cookbook. It's the necessary item all good Canners must have! I'll run my copy back so you can have a happy half hour drooling over the recipes. :)

    Jam Master...I think I'm going to hae to keep that one! :)

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  8. Does making your own beer count?

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  9. I'll do the cooking, you do the preserving. The idea of standing over a pot of boiling glass jars makes me shudder. Now...who's going to wash the dishes??

    That does NOT mean that I don't appreciate your efforts - homemade raspberry jam? Yummety yum yummm!

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  10. "...fresh from the teat..." *heehee!* No, you don't see that on a carton, do ya.

    When my sweet-pea flowers bloomed, they produced REAL PEAS in their fuzzy little pods...I gave them to Francis (the parrot) to eat...does that count?
    * ; )

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  11. Pickles! From cucumbers from my own garden and dill from my own garden. I couldn't wait to can tomatoes too but the deer ate the whole garden down to the soil. Sigh.

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  12. looks so yummy! my mom and grandma canned up a storm every summer. every thing you could think of. we could never eat it all.

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  13. I love making jam. But darn I wish I had the fruit at home. Buying it all is soooo expensive!

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  14. Congrats on being a berry good jammer.

    I have the best blackberry jam recipe in the world - maybe we can share our hidden family secrets. . . but then I might have to kill you ;)

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  15. I haven't made jam in years...but my girls are making it this week while visiting their grandma out on the ranch. I used to make plum jam. I still bake my own bread...all cookies, pies and cakes are home made.. and the hubby brews his own beer.

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  16. All I can say is I hope I'm on your Christmas list! I'm a raspberry fanatic!

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  17. On Sunday, we made mango chutney. 75 mangoes, several gallons of vinegar, spices, currants, ginger, garlic, peppers, sugar... It cleared the sinus, that's what it did. I was SO glad when it was over. We didn't burn any pots this year! Oh, how I wish I could trade a bottle of mango chutney for one of jam!!!

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  18. I made a huge batch already, and we are unfortunately on the last bit! I love it on homemade bread...nothing better my friend...nothing better......

    and oh; good for you!

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  19. Oh, that raspberry jam sounds so good! I love raspberry jam! Your family will really enjoy that!

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  20. yum! i used to make jam. but now i have an industrious friend who makes jam and gives it to us. much better!

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  21. My birthday is in early September. I would LOVE a jar of homemade raspberry jam as a present! :-)

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  22. Mmmmmm the smell of cooking jam. Mmmmmm I am melting.

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Spill it, reader.