How is it Monday again already? The weekend flew by in a blur of friendly gatherings, happy news (congratulations Anna, and Shaun and Niki!!), and lots of food in between.
Although I didn’t get around to the strawberry-serrano jam (don’t worry; I did have the good sense to wash, trim and sugar my berries, so I’m hopeful that they can stay just in the fridge like that just one more day…), I did whip up my strawberry-lemongrass (4x 1/2 pints) and rhubarb-ginger (3x 1/4 pints) jams. One of the strawberry jams was earmarked for gifting… which means I broke my own rule with the jam-hoardage by keeping the other three for myself. Already. The summer is off to a good start! (In my defense, however, that jam is so good. It smells of summer strawberry, and the lemon and lemongrass just make it taste… bright. I lurve it.)
For the rhubarb-ginger jam… I pretty much just wung it. I had a little over 2 cups worth of chopped rhubarb, into which I’d stirred around 3/4c of sugar. Later I grated in enough ginger that it smelled gingery but not only of ginger (maybe 1tbsp? 1 1/2 tbsp?) and let that sit overnight. I squeezed in some lemon juice, then heated it until it thickened up a bit, ladled it into jars and processed it for 10 minutes. Not the best recipe ever (sorry Rachel!) but very tasty.
Another thing I did was to print off the jar labels that came in the latest issue of Taproot (!) which I still haven’t finished reading. (So busy!) As an aside, I can’t believe how much I love getting that magazine: I literally do a little hop when I see it in the mailbox. No ads, fun art, lots of “making food yourself” articles, and the whole thing just kind of feels like a paper version of a number of blogs I read.
Anyway, so while I did discover that nail polish remover would indeed clean off any sharpie from the Tattler lids, I figured that this year, I’d try mixing it up a bit and using the paper labels held in place with the rings. (For all you folks who think jars look “naked” sans ring, I have to tell you I think they look a little weird with the rings on. But I do like the labels!)
In other weekend-cookery, The Boy smoked up another batch of bacon and cheese (hurray!), and I test drove a couple recipes from this book. Both were successes in my opinion, and I’ve got a couple others earmarked for test-eating before it goes back to the library. Given that we’re swinging by the US in a couple weeks, I’m definitely considering just ordering the book. But then, you know how I can get about cookbooks…
In non-cookery news, as part of some renewed focus on our living room, The Boy also completed a project which (of all things) Pinterest inspired him to. (I know! I’m so impressed!) We have some floating shelves in the living room, and a sort of narrow corner space that’s not very useful. The Boy thought it’d be cute to build some kitty “steps” in that corner so they could clamber up onto the floating shelf.
Being that for the Princess especially, our kittens seem to view Being Taller as their mission in life, this was an excellent idea. After some research into anchors (to be sure the shelves would support the weight of a jumping Chubs), he built it!
There are plans for a third step below the shelf, but there’s no hurry, as they can get up there via their little house. Although initially a little wary of the set-up, they now seem pleased to be able to stalk about, taller than their humans. I’m hopeful that this means they’ll hang out more when we have people over, since they’ll have a safe vantage point.
So! It was a pretty fantastic weekend for our household; how about you?