Persimmons

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I promised at least a month ago to tell you how the persimmon jelly comes out. Well, it took me a while to get to it and I am so glad I let them ripen. I took three persimmons (about 1 1/2 lbs) and peeled them. Wasn’t hard to peel them. The peels sliced off extremely well. They reminded me in the fruit and in the peeling of nectarines. Ok, so I was curious because in my research I found that the Japanese eat them like an apple, I tried a little. When they say the fruit is astringent, believe them. My tongue felt dry and I needed some water. I so hope it is easier on the tongue with sugar in it.

I then mashed them to a pulp and added 3c sugar, stirred for 3 minutes and let set for about 10 minutes. In the meantime I put together liquid pectin and 1/4 c lemon juice, stirred that also for three minutes. Once the persimmon pulp mixture had set for the required minutes I added the pectin mixture. You guessed it, I stirred for 3 minutes. Magic number for this recipe…probably because it is not a cooked jelly. After all is stirred, I placed the jelly in freezer jars (about an inch from the top. Luckily these bell jars have a marking for freezer use). I used 4 oz. jars so I could share with more people. You can use bigger jars if you just are making for yourself. I put the lids on and let stand for 12 hours.

This jelly is not water sealed so does not stay out of the fridge or freezer. Unopened the jelly will last about 6 months in the fridge. In the Freeze they will keep for a longer period. So, what does the Jelly taste like…I am going to leave that to my taste testers and let them give you their thoughts.I’ll give you an update as soon as I have tried my jelly on a few people. There is 12th Night to get ready for…I’ll serve it to my guests.

I hope you are enjoying the Christmas Season and are looking forward to a New Year. I am, I have many things planned to try and then share with you all. Here is to a glorious New Year and always remember to Feed well upon life and Eat heartily!

Published in: on December 31, 2007 at 8:25 pm  Comments (3)  

Life and the Picnic

I have been promising to blog about our picnic at Williamsburg that happened last Sunday, but life or should I say work got in the way this week. I have a few minutes in another busy week to let you know about being at the Grand Illuminations.

We have been going to Williamsburg for more then 10 years now to start the Christmas season off. They have a wonderful evening celebration with music and fireworks. Each year more friends and family join us. This year one of John’s bothers, his wife and daughter joined in with John’s two sisters, husbands, and child who have been coming for a couple of years now. What a crew! The Grand Illuminations is a popular event, so, we set up camp by 3:00 on the goal side of the capital so to have a good spot and so that we we can see the fireworks that are simultaneously shot off at the governor’s palace and the magazine. When I mean camp, I mean chairs, tables, blankets, and coolers…passersby are always asking if they can join up.

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My favorite thing to do is to cook for people and watch them enjoy what they are eating. The picnic is one of the times I get to cook for John’s family. Some years I make the picnic a substantial meal and other times I have made it a lite snack…this year I chose somewhere in between. Before we left for Williamsburg, I boiled eggs, made the chicken salad, spinach spirals, crab tarts and potato salad. The spinach spiral is puff pastry spread with a mixture of spinach, cream cheese, Parmesan cheese, and eggs…rolled, sliced and baked. The Crab tarts are easy…just lump crabmeat, eggs to solidify it with the cream, finely chopped celery, onion and old bay. For the chicken salad I fried thin slices of chicken breasts, once cooled-sliced them into strips then mixed it with mayo, finely chopped celery, and onion. (I served it on potato bread rolls with lettuce). My potato salad is an egg potato salad but no pickles!

Luckily, in our room at Williamsburg, we had a microwave which was great so I was able to warm up meatballs with the sauce made from chili sauce and apricot jelly. I put together the chicken sandwiches, because to have made them at home would have caused them to get soggy. I made deviled eggs and ham spiral sandwiches. The ham spirals is made on tortillas spread with a mix made of cream cheese a little apricot jelly and chopped dried apricots layered on top with thin sliced ham, and sliced white American cheese, roll, chill for a hour then slice.

The picnic also had, nuts, vegetables with ranch salad dressing, chips and bread & cookies from the back shop in Williamsburg….John’s sister made some chocolate chip cookies that was just right. We had a wonderful picnic despite the on and off drizzle. The Fireworks was the best we have ever seen at Williamsburg. It was a grand start for the season. I send you the warmest Christmas greetings and until my next blog….Feed well upon life and Eat heartily!

Published in: on December 10, 2007 at 8:17 pm  Leave a Comment