Monday, December 7, 2009

Life Lesson #237

Here are my beauties.....although I THOUGHT I would never see the project completed. Months ago Dan the Man and I went blackberry picking over at a farm and picked 18 POUNDS of blackberries. I was on a mission....a mission to make blackberry jam, just like my Mom used to make.
I got not one, but two books out about canning and decided to go with the "old fashioned" recipe that only calls for fruit and sugar.......

Had my jar sterilized, lids ready to go.....cooking, stirring, waiting for the jam to slide off the spoon just like the illustrations showed in the bible of all canning book....by Ball.



Something wasn't looking right...things weren't thickening up....time for a crisis call to Mom to ask what was going wrong. My sister answers my Moms phone and puts me on speaker phone so we can all three talk. I tell Mom my dilemma and she says..."Did you use pectin?" and I told her "No, I making the old-fashioned recipe" and Mom says "Oh, I never do that...I always use pectin"....about then I hear my sister cackling (isn't that what witches do?) in the background and she says "Nancy, I've never canned before BUT EVEN I KNOW YOU HAVE TO USE PECTIN"....that will be one of those statements that will never be erased from my head. Long story short...I made a LOVELY batch of Blackberry Syrup that will be fabulous on my Swedish pancake recipe (although I'm Danish).....but there is light at the end of the tunnel.....I still had enough blackberries and went back to the store, bought pectin and managed to pull though with a batch that came out! Yes! For more kitchen disasters and entertaining stories stay tuned to Acorn Cottage....News at 11:00p.m.



I know, I know......what does a fox have to do with all this? He just happened to show up in our backyard...a rare site indeed! My photo-op lasted about two seconds, as I opened the door, with all the steam coming out from the kitchen, and scared the little guy and he took off! Between the clouds of steam and flash from the camera, I'm sure he thought he saw a haunted mansion and wanted to get as far away from Acorn Cottage as possible! Not to mention the cook in the kitchen with smears of berry on her, probably looking like blood just to add to the vision. Oh my!
So much for making the woodland creatures feel welcome......

11 comments:

Sue @ Not the Good Scissors! said...

18 pounds of blackberries. Now that was a lot of picking. Blackberries are my favorite. I love them in pies, jams, and oh yes syrup. All in all it looked like you had a fun day of canning. And the fox is a cutie.
Sue

Suz said...

What a fun post....I don't hve a sister...but I know I would and could call mine witch a few times!
Blackberry...mmmmmm
good for you
and the fox! wow

BECKY said...

YAY for Nancy!! I have never canned anything, so you are my new hero!! Love your happy ending! We had a little red fox in our old backyard one year after dark. I was the only one who got to see him and then he vanished.

Hope you have a wonderful week, my friend!! Lots to do here and all is well!

Big hugs,
Becky

Country Dreaming said...

Congrats on the canning process. There are two very capable "taste testers" here.
You are one brave woman!

Melinda

Beverly said...

Your blackberries will be yummy whether in syrup form or jam. I'll bet your house smelled heavenly. I try to make Apple Butter and Pepper jelly every year. It's messy, but love to give it away at Christmas.

Jules said...

Lol, I'm sorry I can't stop laughing. Aunt Nancy, I feel your pain and is why I have NEVER attempted to can ANYTHING! I can hear Grandma's voice now saying "Even I know to use pectin". Live and Learn...

Love you!
Jules P.S. Even I know to use Pectin! LOL..

Carrie @ Cottage Cozy said...

Mission accomplished! Looks wonderful. And that fox...wow. What an unexpected sighting! how lucky!

Stay Cozy, Carrie

Cathy said...

Blackberry syrup sounds wonderful. Warmed over pancakes or waffles, it would be fantastic. I bet the smell was awesome as it simmered away.

Gep said...

We have a whole fox family that lives two houses down from us. LOL, I just realized how goofy that sounds. But seriously, they have made a den under the back porch at the neighbors house. We love watching them. The babies are really cute.

Carol J. said...

Hi Nancy. I so get what you're saying here!! I tried this new recipe for blueberry/peach jam that didNOT call for pectin. I checked and double-checked, no pectin necessary.

Yeah right. At about the same time you realized your jam wasn't gellin', I realized mine wasn't either. Luckily, I had one pouch of pectin in the pantry...I stirred it in and voila...delightful jam!

I'm glad you had that delicious pancake syrup, though! It was an unexpected treat for you! :)

Elyse said...

what an adorable blog you have here!

xo