....does not mean that I haven't been busy. In fact quite the opposite.....
The small flurry in October and early November of preserving, was due to preparing preserves which will be 'exquistly' matured and ready to eat for Christmas. I made the cranberry chutney exactly two months before Christmas. As usual for me, I just had to tweak the recipe from Sensational Preserves, and replaced the raisins with dried cranberries, so this is a doubly cranberried preserve: fresh and dried!
By special request I made Pineapple Preserve. I need to work on this a little longer as it took nearly five lemons, I think there may be something in pineapple which hinders the set! Anyway it tastes wonderful, and is excellent with yogurt, on pancakes, with home made rice pudding etc. Hubby is onto his second jar! I guess than you could even stir some into into Christmas left over meats, with some soy, chilli, spring onions, etc. and have some tangy sweet and sour dish for a warm supper.
I made this preserve with Keith in mind, as he is not so keen on marmalade. Well I do have a pineapple and lemon marmalade recipe which I shall try next. Just after I made the conserve, Keith let me know that he really loved the lime marmalade, he said either his taste buds were changing, or mine was just not as bitter as shop bought!
Penny, who is a wonderful source and generous contributor to my stash of 'exotic' fruits, brought me some medlars, and when approximately half were 'bleated', I decided to make a jelly....
This is a fruit which has been grown for centuries and is returning to favour, and goes well with the rich dishes over Christmas. When I tasted the juice, I felt it a little bland, so added some Rosemary and Thyme. I had great fun trying to get the sprigs to remain suspended in the jars....
The Beetroot Chutney which has already gone out, is a Wow with most. This is a recipe I have worked on for a few years now, and baking the beetroot in the oven means that all the juices are concentrated in the preserve.
More pear chutneys, some with or without walnuts, and some without any salt at all for one of the club, together with all the other jars, are now ready to go out. Some of the preserves are made in such small batches, sometimes there is not sufficient for everyone to get one of all of them. I am beginning to understand the various special likes and dislikes in the group, and make sure that each gets lovely choices each time.
December will be doubled up, so that you can have a really nice choice to enjoy over the festive period, or else give away as presents. As usual return of jars is appreciated, but if they go as gifts, then that will be alright!
May the jam and relishes enrich the dishes you serve, and have a Merry Christmas.