Apple Jelly with Lemon & Lavender

Another jelly? Could it be that I’m becoming a jelly fiend like someone else we know? Not bloody likely, but, I do like how this one came out. With the extra acid from a full sliced lemon, it took a little less sugar than the apple quince jelly to yield a gel.  The set is a little more firm, but still satisfyingly squishy, almost, but not quite, the set of a marmalade. Not surprising as the poached lemon peel in the […]

Can Jam: Apple Quince Jelly with Vanilla Bean

The last Tigress Can Jam of the year but one, and the lovely Cosmic Cowgirl comes to the rescue with the November choice of pomes: apples, pears and quince, oh my! And a rescue it was, indeed, as I still had 20 lbs of apples, leftover from my October picking excursion to Fishkill Farms with Julia, Kate and Liz, going soft in the garage. From that very same excursion, I had a couple of beautiful quince, and some of the most perfect […]

Can Jam: Apple Cider Jelly with Rosemary & Peppercorn

I should have left well enough alone. After the glorious triumph of my Can Jam Lemon Lavender Marmalade, I should have known to just quit while I was ahead.  Sadly, I so rarely take my own sage advice. There’s a reason why I never make jelly.  Jelly is basically juice + sugar.  Since there is no fruit pulp to round out the texture, a jelly really needs more sugar than a jam, or whole fruit preserve, in order to have any structure.  There […]

Rhubarb Prosecco Jelly

Even before I brought home 25 lbs of rhubarb from Tai’s Grandma’s massive Maine rhubarb patch, I had begun the season’s rhubarbapalooza with about 8 lbs of gorgeous, fat and deeply magenta stalks courtesy of Madura Farm. Since the pale pinky-green stalks are far more common in New England, I pounced on these beauties, and knew that I would save them for preserves where color counts: rhubeena and jelly. Last year, when I was leafing through my new copy of Sherri Brooks […]

Fiery Apple Chile Syrup

Back in the heat of August, I was talking chile pepper love with Kat, of Food, Literature, Philosophy, on Twitter. We were talking about our love of the spice and the various ways in which I incorporate chiles into fruit preserves: jam and jelly, syrup and preserves. Kat mentioned that she had been working lately with Jim, the farmer at Rushy Springs Farm near Knoxville, TN, who grows several different varieties of chile peppers, including his own open-pollinated version of a Tennessee Cherry […]

Apple Bourbon Butter

I love apple butter. It’s tasty, of course, but it’s not so much that I love to eat it, as I love to cook with it: I toss it into various muffins & quickbreads, Tai’s granola, the occasional meat glaze or braising sauce. In addition to its usefulness in the kitchen, butter is the easiest way to preserve a whole bunch of apples without a lot of effort: no peeling, no coring, no prep of added ingredients. It’s perfect for […]

Plum Hot Jelly

A few weeks ago, it was hot. Bright sunshine. High summer. It’s kind of hard to fathom now, just a short time later, as I huddle at my desk in fleece pants and fuzzy slippers, watching the rain drip, drip, drip endlessly from the eaves. Back then, in high summer, I met Miss Julia up in Red Hook for some blackberry picking, carelessly comfortable in flip flops and a tanktop: was it really only last month? As we often do, we traded some goodies: […]

Indian-Spiced Apple Butter

Want to give homemade gifts this holiday season, but you didn’t spend the summer squirreling away the season’s bounty? Never fear: apples to the rescue!  Apples are still abundant at area farmer’s markets and there is a dizzying array of options for holiday gift giving: from applesauce (great for new parents or friends with toddlers), jam (quick & easy, with no worrying about the ‘set’) and jelly, to chutneys, spiced or spicy (fantastic hostess gift and great on a cheese tray), […]

Preserving Apples

I know you all thought that October’s Can Jam would be apples, which, of course, would have been wonderful, since I still have 20 lbs in the garage awaiting preservation. Some were thrilled with my pick of chiles (although none more than I!) while others, not so much. As a consolation prize of sorts, I’ve done my own round-up of apple preserving recipes, tips & techniques (just in time for apple season to be over here in the Northeast. Don’t […]

Grape Jelly with Balsamic & Black Pepper

With the last of my 13-pound haul of Concord grapes from Maine I decided to attempt a jelly (even though jelly and I are not best friends). Since I’d already made a sweet-tart jam and a maply graple syrup, I decided to hit a savory note with this one; I went with the classic addition of balsamic vinegar and black pepper. As usual with my jelly attempts, I’m not so sure about this one. It did set, at least, but […]

Watermelon Jelly with Balsamic & Mint

If there are still watermelons at your farmer’s market, this one is a keeper.  I was intrigued, but a little dubious, about the amount of balsamic vinegar in this recipe, and we all know that I do not have the best luck with jelly. I have to say, however, that this turned out to be quite delicious in addition to being rather beautiful.  Tai gave it his patented “This is horrible. Don’t even try it; I’ll suffer and eat it […]

Smoky Chipotle Cherries

Cherry season is upon us, coming and going fast & furious like nearly every other fruit in the short Northeast summer. And while cherries did not fare well in the Hudson Valley this year (again!), due to a warmer-than-seasonal March, followed by freezing temps and lots of rain in April, there are some out there to be found. Belltown Orchards in Glastonbury, CT is open for you-pick of both sweet & sour cherries (assuming they still have some left); I’ve […]

Honeyed Grapefruit Jamalade

Jamalade, you say? Yes. Jamalade. Not quite a jam: toothsome slivers of citrus zest and a touch of pithy bitterness from the addition of citrus pectin make this flavorful preserve reminiscent of marmalade. Yet not quite a marmalade either: the majority of the white pith is left out of this recipe, and the fruit is strained from the syrup and added only at the end of the cooking process, yielding visible chunks of ruby red grapefruit in the final product, […]

What To Do With Citrus Peel

As I mentioned last week, I’ve been building up quite a supply of grapefruit peels of late. Though I will buy lemons and limes throughout the year, for use in jams & preserves, savory dishes and cocktails, I wait for citrus season to roll around each winter to buy citrus for eating and preserving: grapefruits, oranges, exotic varieties. Typically, if I am using a lemon or a lime in a recipe, I’ll use both the zest and flesh or juice; […]

Strawberry Pinot Noir Preserves

The Great Freezer Clean-Out 2011 continues: this time with a Ferber-esque strawberry preserve, made with Pennsylvania pinot noir from Sand Castle Winery. I unearthed a giant bag full of strawberries from last June in my freezer assessment of last week. Half the bag went to one of my favorite strawberry recipes, strawberry rhubarb & caramelized onion jam; for the remaining 2 pounds, I wanted to do something new. I poked through Mes Confitures to see what she may have in […]