I'm so over canning!

Today we're eating top ramen and I have stowed all my canning supplies until apple season. Then I'll be ready to do apple sauce and make cider mustard. After doing a full day of canning blackberries, of which it one batch set, I'm ready for a break and to have the kitchen a little less crowded. It's been a good run, though. And the blackberry sauce I accidentally made yesterday is delicious, I'm not crying in my pan or anything, just a little worn out.


What's next

A while ago I posted a darling vintage pattern and claimed that it was my next project. Well, that wasn't true now was it? But here I go finally, now that I want to wear it to a wedding this Sunday. And, I am happy and relieved to report that the worst is over--the collar! I still have a bit of sewing, including a hefty share of slip stitching and loads of pressing, but I won't be schwitzing over trimming curves, easing the collar into the neckline and perfect topstitching quite so heavily.

And finally, peaches

When I was doing the peaches, I thought I had come upon something really amazing that I had not heard of: sweet lemons. The lemon slices I used in the peaches were so tasty after having been canned, I did a little batch if just lemons in peach juice and lemons in simple syrup. I just opened the other day and they were bitter, soggy and strange. The upside is that they were very beautiful, nut that recipe ain't goin anywhere 'cept the trash! Whoops!


I drank a coffee at 2pm today which is why I am posting a zillion shots of all my canned goods. Well, that's not entirely accurate. I am also posting these because I am so excited and proud if my handi-work. If I am feeling down this winter, I'll just descend into my canning closet and look at all my beautiful jars of summer flavor made over the hot stove on warm days! Ahhh!

Plum Preserves a la Joy

Today my mom and I put up 8 lbs of plums in the form of spicy plum chutney and Italian plum preserves. The chutney is good stuff, a little kick. The plum preserves, however, take the cake. And come to think of it, they'd be great ON cake! I used my ancient Joy of Cooking for the recipe which was so simple, I remember still. Here goes:

Plum Preserves a la vintage Joy
-equal parts Italian plums (we used 4lbs) and white sugar (I used only 3/4 the sugar)
- simmer until fruit is soft.
- Remove fruit and simmer syrup until it thickens to your liking. Put fruit back in.
- add a whole orange or two, chopped up small with peel (no seeds)
- add chopped up walnuts (I put in 1.5 cups or so)
- bring back to simmer and then do water bath canning method

I don't know about the safety of canning nuts in jam like that. I need to read up, but it sure tastes good and would probably last a month in thd fridge.


Pizza serenade

Forgot to post this on pizza day. Pretty soon, Finns guitar skills will surpass mine!


So, the free concert at an undisclosed location(a sweet barn and yard of a woodinville recording studio) was a little weird. The setting was darling and perfectly planned. The music was great, but it felt like half of the guests were paid models/cast members and Jansport should just come clean about the purpose of the show. The cameras outnumbered the fans(I think we were in the minority) and a lot of folks talked through the moondoggies sweet and intimate acoustic set around the fire. But, we got a nice show, free food, backpacks and I bet the moondoggies made their money, too. This pic is cast memberless and the woman in the blue tank, Tina, the sister of the security guard, was a kick in the pants and definitely lit up the night!


Waiting for Bonfire Sessions

Grant and I decided to to tough it and wait all day for a free Moon Doggies show at an undisclosed location...


Pizza day!

Finn was definitely more curious than helpful until he picked up his guitar to serenade while I hovered around a 500 degree oven! I learned a few things on this batch. I use trader joes pizza dough and they are just too big for my small cookie sheets so I tried the larger sheet and had better results. Too much sauce and cheese made pools on the pan and even a 550 broil doesn't seem to dry it out. Alternating between broil and bake works best. And always feed the musicians first--then they keep playing!

Today I made:
1. summer squash, shallots, chermoula, and walnut
2. Super herb timato sauce with salami (later to be adorned with augula)
3. Super herb tomato sauce with pepperoni and sweet 100 tomatoes


More farm shots

Visit to Jacobs farm!

Jacob had some major projects for us. We dragged a log outta the woods with Betsy, the blue tractor. And we knocked down am old shed with this back-hoe. Not bad for a days work.


Tacoma's outdoor public pool--Titlow! Sunshine and Olympic distance. That is the best 1/4 mile I've ever experienced. What a beauty. Finn wasn't into doing laps, but he sure liked the chairs.


What's driving me? I just like this canning business.

Apricot pepper jam and rhubarb compote with Annie!


The canning continues!

Today: pickled red cabbage, dill pickles
Last week: raspberry jam, 3 kinds of pickled beets


Finn says:

I'm pregnant with him.


Pickling beets

Tomorrow. All day. And that is only 2/3 of what I bought.

New scarf

Bolt purchase if cotton/silk. I just turned under the raw edges and left the selvage edge. Thanks to a pack of fresh microtex needles I can sew delicates again!



Look out winter. We'll be tasting the summer bounty of pickled beets until 2020 considering how many beets I ordered from the CSA. They actually called to make sure I hadnt slipped while I typed and ordered too many. Three if those boxes are all beets! Yes!

Baby Clarren Esmer is coming soon

Bur not without a quilt! The floral green and white is shirt from the great grandmother of the baby and was the organizing principle for the quilt.