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“Two wings lift a person up from earthy concerns: simplicity and purity. Simplicity should be in intention, purity in feelings. Simplicity reaches out after God, purity catches hold and tastes. ~ Thomas A’Kempis

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Two-Berry Jam

Hi everyone,
    Its a busy time here at the Little Homestead, both our red plum trees are laden and dropping fruit daily. The greengage plums have finished, and only had a small yield again. I have a recipe for Greengage and Vanilla Jam which sounds so lovely (if I ever get enough fruit) !!
We're also having a wonderful harvest of tomatoes for the first time in quite a few years. I planted them in a different spot this year..down in the lower garden by the church shed next door.. The sheep are no longer in that paddock as the area has been landscaped and native plants put in. (I mush preferred listening to the sheep and going  down the back to visit them :) plus feed them anything that was about to go to seed..they loved it too !

Back to the tomatoes...(I do tend to go chasing rabbits in my mind)...Maybe the heat coming off that old shed, coupled with shelter has really improved the growing conditions? either way I've been able to make some Tomato Relish and today I made x 9 jars of Salsa. We've also had lots of summery meals where tomatoes have been just about the main feature :) pizza, lots of salad etc...wonderful !

I've bottled a lot of plums - x 18 1 litre jars and x 9 smaller jars..so we'll have plenty of plums to decorate the porridge all winter  long :) The next fruit to be ready in the garden are the apple and pear trees..followed closely by Feijoa's. So they'll be no rest in the canning department for this girl.
~~~
now a little bit about the jam. I wanted to write a little post about Frozen Berry Jam and share the recipe, because its got to be the quickest easiest jam in the world to make. I wish I'd known about it sooner + its delicious !!!. and as I had some Raspberries and Boysenberries in the freezer and only half a jar of  jam left in the house, I knew it was time to get busy and churn some out. Good quality jam is quite costly these days..anywhere up to $5.00 !! for an average size jar...so its definitely worth while making it yourself.

Recipe
Frozen Berry Jam

1 kilogram frozen berries (raspberries/boysenberries)
5 Cups sugar - about 1 kilogram
Juice of half a lemon
1 teaspoon butter

Place the frozen berries and sugar in a larg-ish, deep pan or jam pan. Bring the mixture slowly to the boil, stirring to make sure the sugar is completely dissolved, then add the butter. Boil fast on a medium heat unti the mixture starts to thicken - about 15 -18 minutes. Add lemon juice, boil 2 more minutes. To tell when the jam is ready, simply pour a teaspoon or two into a small dish. I then place it in the freezer for a minute or so. Then remove it and a skin will probably form when it is pushed with the edge of a teaspoon - now your jam is ready. Its most important not to overcook this sort of jam. It will set up firmer over a couple of days. Pour into hot steralized jars and seal.

I added in a some lemon juice  to add a little extra pectin..one recipe recommended that. Look at the size of that lemon - wow our tree's doing great this year !

pouring the jam - the hot messy part.....and oh my.. the kitchen smelt divine :)

The finished product all dressed up & ready to share 3

After I finished up with the jam I did a little bit of baking - 'Peanut Crunch', with a twist. I made 1.5 x the normal recipe, but left the sugar just the regular amount and I thought the finished product needed a little something more, so I added a butterscotch icing :) now its morphed into Butterscotch Crunch Slice. Yum...well at least that's what my husband and son thought :) Its also a great recipe because its easy to change it up and make different variations eg. add some cocoa powder and a chocolate icing, and there you have chocolate slice etc etc...the possibilities are endless. I think I originally got this recipe from my friend Paula ??? 


   Paula's Peanut Crunch :)
(Original Recipe + Icing)
                                                                           
In a saucepan melt  - 2 dessertspons golden syrup and 150grams butter. Remove from heat and add 2 teaspoons vanilla essence.

In a bowl mix: 
1 Cup self raising flour
3/4 cup coconut
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup raw peanuts - smash them up a little
1/2 cup raisins
1 cup cornflakes

Add the butter mixture to the dry and mix well. Bake at 170 C for around 30 minutes, or until golden.
Optional Icing: (this goes on the slice as soon as it comes out of the oven) 1.5 Tablespoons golden syrup, 50g butter, 1.5 cups icing sugar. Melt butter and syrup together. beat in the icing sugar, and put back on the heat a little until the sugar melts some and the mixture just gets easier to spread. Remove from the heat and spread over the hot base. Cool and cut into slices/squares. Enjoy with a cuppa :)


Other things: as I meditate over this past week, and dealing with pain in my back, I'm so very thankful to have a husband who is so caring to me and helpful in the home, especially at the moment..what a blessing :)  This scripture also comforts me..


Blessings to all who stop by ~ Linda
(me in the garden a couple of years back)


me October 2016 with our newest grand daughter Poppy Mae - such a sweet wee girl


* and to close, a pretty rose bud from our garden *


~ ~ ~


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