Monday, March 25, 2013

The Fallout [What to do with a truckload of citrus]

I have been watching my stats over the weekend after getting my painting featured on Craftgawker.


I am so overwhelmed and excited to see that over 3000 people have ventured over to my blog for that post. To any and all newcomers to The Little Mother, welcome!  I hope you like what you find here and stick around for a while!

The unfortunate fallout of having such a hugely popular post is that now I have no clue what to do with myself.  I mean, how do you top something like that?

I was talking with the hubsters about it over lunch today, and he reminded me of a quote he read in one of his film books. I don't remember the exact words of it, but here's the gist: Director John Ford commented once that he purposefully would make a couple low-budget, okay movies after finishing up a blockbuster.  Why? To keep himself humble, and to keep himself from constantly feeling like he needed to one-up his own films.  I've decided I need to adopt a similar approach here.  I'm not saying that I'm going to write a bunch of crap for a couple weeks.  [Wouldn't that be hilarious?]  No, instead I'm just going to keep plodding along, and not fret over trying to create another blockbuster.

Speaking of fallout, if you missed my picture on instagram of the fresh fruit delivery from last week, here it is:

dellie picks out her breakfast.
[I think that may go down as the worst segway ever written.]

[and if you're interested in following, I'm @lelittlemama]

We inherited a laundry basket of grapfruit, plus two more boxes of oranges and tangerines.  Like any good college student's wife, I figured this out to about 3 weeks worth of meals and enough vitamin C to keep us all healthy until 2015. [Actually, I think I had a mild panic attack wondering how much of it was going to wind up in the trash.]

My parents also came out to visit over the weekend, and were kind enough to get wrangled into making sure none of the fruit went to waste.  Three days later, we succesfully juiced, jammed, and baked all but a handful.

You might be thinking, "What on earth can you make with that much grapefruit?"

Make a surprising amount of juice.  Plus some jam. and even some homemade donuts.

I used this grapefruit donut recipe over at A Beautiful Mess. I give it a 4 out of 5.  It was definitely yummy, but hardly used up two grapefruit.  I was hoping that 3/4 cup of juice would equal out to more kills. [Gluten-free? No, sorry.]

I also made a ton of jam.  Which is probably more like jelly. Except it has been taking its time firming up.  So until then, we've been using it as syrup.

I'm new at this whole jamming and canning thing. Can you tell?

I ended up making my own jam recipes up, which basically consists of equal parts juice [tangerine or grapefruit, both work] and sugar, along with pectin, some honey, and lots of crossing of fingers. Hence the super-yummy-syrup-which-eventually-jells-into-jam-or-is-it-actually-jelly? creations in our pantry.

Here's the recipe:

Either Tangerine or Grapefruit Jam/Jelly/Jammy/Syrup
  • 32 oz fresh squeezed tangerine or grapfruit juice [pulpy if you prefer, just leave the seeds out]
  • 4 cups of sugar
  • 2 cups honey
  • 1 bag (3 oz) liquid pectin
*this make enough jammy for 6 half-pint jars.

1. Get someone else to juice the tangerines.  If you're going to can your jammy for storage, start the sanitizing process with your jars.

2. Mix together the juice, sugar, and honey together in a 4 qt pot.  Bring to a boil, so that the sugar dissolves.

3. Follow the instructions to the liquid pectin you are using.  [The stuff I used has you bring your juice mixture to a rolling boil that can't be stirred down, dump the whole 3 oz. bag in at once, and stir constantly at a rolling boil for 1 minute. This is just an example.]

4. Let your jam simmer for 30 minutes.

5. Can 'em for use in six months when you've finally run out of scholarship money.

I used this recipe to help figure out the numbers, but from there, I just kind of made things up and read a lot of directions.  I found this tutorial on canning really helpful.

Once again, welcome newcomers! I'm so excited you've joined me!

1 comment:

  1. Major kudos!! I never ventured over to craft gawker before. It's pretty cool