Wednesday, June 24, 2009

We're Roasting!

Your weekly food porn, complements of One Straw Farm.

It's going to be a scorcher and I'm making a Roasted Garlic Garbonzo Chard Salad with Cous Cous (try sayi ng that three times fast!). The garbonzos, garlic, shallots and fresh bay leaves are in the oven roasting and they will be tossed with braised swiss chard, served around a little pile of cous cous and top with a light sprinkle of feta cheese. The kitchen smells outrageous!

We also still have a great Turkey Guacamole sandwich and The Greenhouse - our Powerhouse sandwich plus quacamole.

Last night I made a pint of Blackberry Raspberry Jam. Actually, one pint and and a little extra that the staff is enjoying this morning. It took about 20 minutes, used one pot, and a potato masher and was done with no special equipment. (By the way, thanks for "inspiring" me to clean the cook top!) After the jar cooled to room temperature I put it in the refrigerator where it will store safely for a long, long time (provided I don't go on a crepe, ice cream, toast, biscuit, scone binge and eat it all!).

The secret to small batch jam is treating pectin like a condiment. Until a few years ago it never occured to me that pectin could be used by the spoonful. Growing up we had a room of homemade preserves so a "batch" always used the full package. I have never seen a recipe that stated the amount of pectin needed for a quantity of fruit; it is always the quantity of fruit needed for a package of pectin. But we're going to change that today.

Here's how it's done.

Blackberry Raspberry Jam
1 pint fruit, washed and drained
1 3/4 cups white sugar
1 1/4 teaspoon pectin

Get one pint of fresh raspberries, blackberries or a combination. These are two half-pint containers.

Wash and drain the berries. Combine in a pot with the sugar and slightly mash to get the juices flowing.

Stirring frequently, bring to a rolling boil that can not be stirred down. Be careful not to let the mixture boil over.

Sprinkle the pectin on the fruit and stir in. I mixed it with a bite of cassis, but this is not necessary. Bring the mixture back to a boil and boil for exactly one minute stirring constantly.

Pour into container. Cover and allow to come to room temperature. Store under refrigeration.

That little bite extra? It's the instant gratification.