Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Updates through 7-30-13

Atkins Ranch lamb chops
Apolloni OR wines - chardonnay, blanc, gris, rose
Bare Fruit dried Fuji apples
Dairy Creek Farms honey - http://www.dairycreekfarm.com/honey_store.html
Lazzari lump mesquite charcoal
Trader Joe's baking soda
Organic raspberries - not with a liner in the bottom
Laura Chenel plain goat chevre

Jam Without Added Pectin

If you have many food allergies, chances are good you can't use any of the commercial pectins - although some people have been okay with Pomona Pectin.  Jam is easy enough to make without adding pectin, though, that I just leave it out!  All you need are three ingredients - fruit, sugar, and lemon juice.  And for the most flavorful jams, think small batch and fast cooking.


About 3 pounds soft fruit, stone fruit, or berries
Juice of 2 lemons
Sugar - how much depends on how much fruit pulp you get, see below. 
Glass canning jars - 3 pint sized or 7 half-pint
Canning rings and lids

1.  Thoroughly wash and rinse jars, rings, and lids.  Place in a pot, cover with water, and boil for 10 minutes.  I just leave these in the hot water until I fill them.

2.  Pit and roughly chop fruit - add to a large pot.  This will bubble up while cooking, so you want lots of room.  Really soft berries don't need to be chopped and with cherries I quarter about 2/3 of them and halve the rest.

3.  Add lemon juice and cook until juices are released - about 7 - 10 minutes.

4.  Remove from heat and measure.  For every cup of fruit mixture, add 3/4 cup of sugar.  

5.  Cook over medium to medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until mixture reaches 220 - 222 degrees F on a candy thermometer.  For every 1000 feet above sea level you are, subtract 2 degrees from this.

6.   Remove jars from the hot water and fill, leaving 1/4 inch head room.  Put on lids and rings and tighten.  If don't have enough to fill the last jar, just keep the jar in the refrigerator.

7.  Process in a hot water bath for 15 minutes.

About the hot water bath - some people don't use it and their jams are fine, some swear they'll be unsafe without it.  I never used to put my jams through a hot water bath, but these days I do better avoiding needing medical attention so I err on the side of caution.  For more information on how to do a hot water bath, see this pamphlet from Virginia Tech.

Cheese Scones

These are totally addictive!  They may not, however, be low-histamine depending on your tolerance for cheese and which cheese you use.

Cheese Scones

2 cups rice flour
1 tsp. cream of tartar
1/2 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. dried thyme
1/3 cup Spectrum palm shortening

2 cups grated cheese - I use Trader Joe's goat gouda (not the one with honey)
1/2 cup coconut milk + a little more for the tops
1 flax egg substitute recipe
Salt for the tops

Measure all dry ingredients into a bowl.  Cut in the shortening.  Mix in the cheese.  Add the coconut milk and egg substitute.  Stir until well mixed, finishing up by kneading with your hands.

On an ungreased cookie sheet, flatten into a flat circle about 7 inches in diameter.  Cut into 16 pie wedge shapes.  Separate the wedges so no sides are touching.  Brush with coconut milk and sprinkle or grind salt on the top of each scone.

Bake at 425 degrees for about 15 minutes - until golden.

Plum Sorbet and Raw Cherry Sorbet

Summer and time for fruit sorbets!  In the photo, the cherry is the scoop on top and the plum is on the bottom - yeah, they look pretty much alike!!

Plum Sorbet

2 pounds plums - any type, in the photo I used Italian prune plums
1 cup organic sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon homemade vanilla

Pit plums, roughly chop, and put into a large saucepan.  Add sugar and lemon juice and simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring.  Let mixture cool a little and then puree in a blender.  Add vanilla and refrigerate until cold.  Freeze in an ice-cream maker.

Raw Cherry Sorbet

4 cups pitted cherries
1/2 cup organic sugar
1T homemade vanilla

Puree everything in a blender and refrigerate until cold.  Freeze in an ice-cream maker.