I know, Week #12 is practically over and I haven't posted anything. To tell the truth, I haven't had time to write because I've been spending so much time cooking...honest! This week's share didn't have any huge surprises in it, so there's not much use in recapping it, but here's a summary of the week's greatest food adventures:
- Last Saturday we went to Mood's Farm, on the advice of one of my favorite blogs, Food in Jars. We picked 2.5 lbs of blackberries and got some peaches and fresh corn, too. I loved this place. It was way cheaper and felt more home-y than the huge, more popular place we've gone to in the past. We'll definitely be back!
- The blackberries have been savored all week, but a bunch of them have been mashed and frozen and will be made into this jam, except that apricot season is over in PA and I couldn't find a single apricot anywhere. So I'm substituting mangoes. Not exactly local, I know, but the apricots wouldn't have been local at this time of year either, so I figure it's an even trade.
- The peaches can be seen in the picture above, as I pickled them. That's right, I said pickled. But don't think of it like a dill pickle or anything. There's vinegar in there, but also a ton of sugar, cinammon, ginger, and cloves. (I used the standard recipe from the Ball Blue Book.) I can't wait to open these up this winter and serve them with some vanilla ice cream...maybe homemade!
- The outdoor canning set up is also worthy of a note. We have two grills outside (gas and charcoal), but neither is big enough to accomodate a canner. Our indoor stove is electric (not our choice!) and has a glass cooktop, so canning inside is an impossibility, although the heat that is generated by the activity is enough of a deterrent. So we purchased a camping burner from LL Bean and it works GREAT! I plan on canning the jam, once it's made, but I am also looking forward to getting bunches of tomato seconds and making a big batch of sauce.
- The LL Bean burner and the canning pot also came in handy a few nights ago when it was ridiculously hot, but I wanted to cook the tomatillos and Mood's Farm corn to make a salsa. I simply took the canning rack out of the pot, changed the water, brought it to a boil on the burner, and threw in the tomatillos and corn. I even threw in some boil-in-a-bag brown rice! We cooked chicken on the grill and were quite proud of our "cooked entirely outside" meal. The corn and tomatillos were joined by fresh tomatoes (both CSA and home-grown), our very own jalapenos from the backyard, some green/red peppers, onion, olive oil, salt, pepper, and a good dose of lime juice. It went on top of the chicken and rice. So simple, but really delicious.
I'll try to post this week's list before I head off to my hometown in NJ to visit friends. I'm hoping to savor some of my favorite hometown foods while I'm there, which could be worthy of a post or two as well!