October 9, 2011
Our garden has an incredible amount of edible stuff in it. There was an apple tree, a pear tree and a rhubarb patch when we moved in and I’ve added to it ever since with assorted fruit vegetables and herbs. Every spring I get incredibly excited about the garden and put in an immense amount of effort which dwindles as the year goes on until we hit autumn by which time work is making me want to kill myself on a daily basis and the idea of putting in a few hours of gardening a weekend makes me want to weep. I’ve been suffering progressively worse feelings of guilt the last couple of weeks as there’s been (without any assistance from myself) a fairly impressive amount of fruit slowly rotting in the garden as I run through on the way to work. I usually manage to combat this by ignoring it and hoping it goes away.
We were supposed to be visiting friends today but Alexander has been a little unwell (he’s actually much better today) and didn’t want to risk making him any worse so we canceled (sorry Max and Fi). My immediate thought was to spend the day writing WordPress plugins but considered that my nearly-wife would probably kill me in the face so opted for the more family friendly option of harvesting some stuff from the garden.
We usually make a sort of effort to freeze a bulk of the apples but don’t do that with the pears as they are a pain in the arse to freeze (you need to cook them first), so opted to make pear jam instead. Did two batches based on this Pear and Lemon jam recipe we split it into two batches, one of which we followed the recipe and the other we added some stem ginger in syrup. We thought this would supply us with some gifts for Christmas, I hadn’t realised that 2 kilos of pears makes about 4 medium jars of jam. I managed to burn it (along with my hand) a bit as well so probably best we keep it for ourselves.
It was fairly straight forward, although I fucked up a bit by trying to make jam, freeze herbs, prepare apples and pears for freezing (made the effort to freeze some pears this time) and make pear muffins all at the same time. Nothing went horribly wrong but there were some moments of flailing and disharmony within the kitchen.
Lessons learned today are to do one thing at once, especially if two of the things you are doing you have never done before; wasps like pear trees, they don’t like you being in pear trees; spending the morning in a pear tree makes me itchy; I really shouldn’t have recycled that big bag of jam jars the other week.
We now have a kitchen full of tasty fruity goodness.
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