Karma's When I Feel Like It Blog

October 2, 2010

Get Comfy – Picture Fall, day 2

Filed under: Photo assignments — Karma @ 1:46 pm
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Today’s prompt from Picture Fall was about getting comfortable.  The instructor asked us to photograph the place where we feel most at home and show an image that shows the true comfort of your soul.  Although when the cold winds blow, you will often find me curled in the corner of my couch with a good book and a couple of dogs warming my toes, this picture shows more of the true comfort of my soul.  I am a summer girl in the deepest part of my heart and soul.  I love the warmth and bright sunshine and the wonderful slower pace for my family.  I can wile hours away in my deck chair with something good to read, my sunglasses, a drink and my four-legged companions at my side.  Even though this assignment is about fall, I will still attempt to capture any warm afternoons New England may still have in store for us this year outside in my comfy place.

Jelly Time

Filed under: Recipes — Karma @ 10:26 am
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Remember all those concord grapes I picked a couple weeks ago?

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Last Friday, I finally made some jelly from them.  The recipe, it seems, was on the inside of the Sure Jell box.  While I googled recipes, many mentioned fruit pectin, so I picked up a box at the store and discovered full jam and jelly making instructions inside.  It was quite the messy process, so I couldn’t take pictures every step of the way, but I did the best that I could at the times that my hands weren’t covered in grape juice.

After picking all the grapes from the stems, the next step was to mash them.  I figured scrunching them in the blender was the best method for that:

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Into the pot they went after that, seeds, skins and all, to simmer:
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After they simmered came the most tedious part.  I had to strain the juice out of the grape muck.  Of this step there are no photos. I scooped the grape muck into cheese cloth, and let the juice run out.  My hands, the counter, my shirt, my floor all ended up pretty grapey at this point.  From about 3 pounds of grapes, I ended up with this much juice:
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According to the Sure Jell box, this is where measuring had to become precise.  I’ve forgotten the exact proportions now, but I think it was about 7 cups of sugar to 4 or 5 cups of juice, plus the box of Sure Jell, brought to a boil then simmered.  Next I ladled the thick liquid into 4 pint sized jelly jars:

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I added the lids and processed them in boiling water for 5 minutes.  They were then set to cool on a towel for the next 24 hours.

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Here’s the mess I made of my kitchen in the process:

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The final product:
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The taste of the jelly is nice.  It doesn’t taste hugely different from a jar of Welch’s, but it has a stronger, fresher, grapier taste to me.  Worthwhile?  Meh, I don’t know.  But now that I know how to make jelly, I might be willing to try it with other fruits.  It made for a tasty breakfast this morning, anyway.
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The whole I time I was making this jelly, I had this crazy internet-ditty song playing in my head.  If you click on this, I’m sure you will be stuck with it too!  Don’t say I didn’t warn you!  😉