Friday, September 19, 2008

Creative, Happy and On the Go, Two

When I was a little girl, my Italian grandmother used to can onion wedge pieces in wine vinegar and we would dip them in good-quality olive oil as a snack. I haven't had them since. My grandmother died when I was only 7 years old so it has been a very long time. (I shall not say just how long that is!) Today I canned wedge pieces in red wine vinegar and slices in white wine vinegar. Both have a touch of sugar and a teaspoon of whole peppercorns. I am looking forward to dipping the wedge pieces in olive oil, and the slices will be a good condiment for many things. I will be giving some of these as gifts as well.

My home made canning processor. Just place a folded kitchen towel in the bottom of a good sized pot (this is my Italian grandmothers spaghetti pot) and you are set.

White vinegar, sugar and pepercorns, slowly heating to dissolve sugar.

Processing jars filled with sliced onions and white wine vinegar syrup in a water bath.

Processing the wedge pieces in red wine vinegar syrup in awater bath.

Wedges in red wine vinegar.

Sliceds in white wine vinegar.

Meyer lemon juice in pot to make Meyer Lemon Jelly.

Sugar and pectin waiting to be added. This recipe called for 14 cups of sugar to 8 cups of Meyer Lemon Juice. It takes a lot of patience to keep stirring over medium low heat to dissolve the sugar completely. Then it is brought to a rolling boil over medium high heat while sirring constantly (another slow process) then the liquid pectin is added, brought to a boil again and boil for 1 minute, reove from heat, skim foam quickly and fill your jars. Seal properly and put in water bath for 10 minutes if using 1/2 pint jars, 15 minutes for pint jars.

The dishcloth in the bottom of the pot works like a dream. The jars stay put and keeps the jars off the bottom of the pot.

I used half pint jars and ended up with 16 jars. This is not a clear jelly. I am looking forward to tatsing it. More gifts for friends and family.

Dinner tonight was prepped by Trader Jor's. I just had to brown and finsih off in the oven; stuffed pork chops. They are actually very tasty, though their directions made them too cooked for us and a nit dry.

I accomplished a lot as you can tell by the items crossed off my list. I thoroughly enjoyed the time in the kitchen playing!

Jars of strawberry as well as raspberry freezer jam waiting out the 24 hour setting up time. They will go in the freezer tomorrow morning.

Raspberry jam. I ran out of small jars and saw these at Walmart today while I was out shopping for my grandsons. They are made by Ball and are for freezer jams. They are plastic "jars" and the lids screw on. Great idea, and they are reasonably priced.

The smashed raspberries and sugar setting for 10 minutes before the pecton is added. I started the day at 5 AM and it is now 10 PM and I have to admit I am exhausted. Perhaps tonight I will sleep past 2:30 - 3 Am. That is when i have been waking up all week. I am ready for a complete nights sleep.

Rose and I

Wednesday was the Newcomers monthly luncheon. I am the historian this term so was there taking pictures. It is wonderful seeing all the ladies, but I have to say (and only because O know the woman who set this up doesn't know about my blog) that this restaurant and food was the worst. Ane it costs us $18 a piece. The fruit tray had fresh strawberries, grapes and cantaploupe and then there qas a pile of mixed fruit out of a can! It is a combination Mexican-Italian Resturant (yep, you read that right, eye roll) and there was no Mexican food on the buffet menu we were served, and the pnly 2 things Italian were a pasta dish and garlic bread. Outside of that there was BBQ pulled pork, BBQ chicken tenders (so salty it burned the inside of your mouth), potato salad, spinach salad, the fruit and a chocolate mousse cheesecake.

That's Gemma on the left and Carmen on the right, and nice ladies as well in the middle.

Ladies lined up for the buffet. The curtains were terrible in this room and made it dark and dreary, and one window actually had a sheet drapped for a curtain! Eye roll.

Barbara and Paulette.

I think this is a great shot and the background worked out as well. This portrait type shot needs to be blown up and framed.


Sarah said...

Looks like a busy day but yum!!

Jen said...

Your luncheon looked like a blast and those onions look delicious! What a neat way to do the whole process, with the towel in the pan!