Monday, September 29, 2008
Green Tomato Relish
5 pounds green tomatoes
1 pound red bell peppers
1 pound onions
2 jalopeno peppers, seeded
4 1/2 cups apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 tablespoons mustard seeds
1 tablespoon celery seeds
1/4 cup Kosher salt
Coarsely chop the vegetables in a food processor. Combine all the ingredients in a dutch oven and bring to a boil. Simmer for 10 minutes. Pour into sterilized jars. Wipe jar rims with a damp towel. Adjust prepared lids and rings. Process for 10 minutes in a boiling water bath.
Sunday, September 28, 2008
3 pounds scuppernongs, washed
1 cup water
7 cups sugar
1 pouch Certo
Simmer the scuppernongs in 1 cup of water for 10 minutes. Crush the fruit to release the juice and strain in a colander. Using 8 layers of cheesecloth, strain the juice. Do not press the fruit through the cheesecloth.
Once the juice is extracted, measure the juice. You will need 4 cups of juice, adding water if needed, no more than 1/2 cup of water should be added for the best flavor. Put the juice and sugar in a large dutch oven and heat to a rolling boil. Add the Certo, bring back to a rolling boil on high heat and cook for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and skim off foam. Pour into hot sterilized jars to 1/8 inch from top of jar. Wipe rims to clean and put on prepared jar lids and rings. Process in a boiling water bath for 5 minutes After the jars have cooled, check each one by pressing tbe middle with your finger. If the center springs back, refrigerate. Allow the sealed jars to stand 24 hours. Remove the rings and clean the jars. Store in a cool, dark place. Open jars should be refrigerated and used within 3 weeks.
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
I am no baker. I can count on my fingers the number of times I have baked a layer cake. My first attempt was pretty good. There is an art to the icing - it must be warm enough to spread, but it cools quickly so you must work fast. I realized that as the icing cooled! There is enough icing for 3 layers, but since I only had 2 pans, the chocolate was very thick on the top.
Granny's Layer Cake with Chocolate Icing
Yellow Cake Layers
3 cups sifted cake flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups sugar
2/3 cups butter
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/4 cups milk
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease the bottom of 2 9-inch cake pans, line with waxed paper and flour. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Cream sugar and butter together. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until thoroughly mixed. Add flour mixture and milk, alternating and beating after each addition. Continuing beating one minute after all ingredients are added. Pour evenly into the prepared pans and bake 30 -35 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick comes out clean. Cool layers on wire racks for 10 minutes. Remove from pans and cool completely on wire racks before frosting.
3/4 cup cocoa
3 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter
3/4 cups evaporated milk
Put all ingredients in a large saucepan. Stirring frequently bring to a boil and cook 1 minute. Remove from the heat and let cool until hand temp on the bottom of the pan. Beat to spreading consistency. Ice layers immediately.
So what will I do next time?
- Buy new cake pans, 3 of them, and a cake spreader.
- Make sure all ingredients are room temperature.
- Watch the icing closely for the right temperature for spreading.
Who knows, I may one day be a baker!
Sunday, September 21, 2008
The county fair brings back a lot of fond memories. My first fair experiences were at the Coosa Valley Fair in Rome, Georgia. With our free ticket in hand, we headed to the fair to enjoy the rides, games and exhibits. My mom was a local garden club member and she worked hard on the floral arrangements she exhibited. I spent my time on the midway, riding the Tilt-a-Whirl, the Scrambler and the Mad Mouse.
Years later as an Extension Agent in Newnan, I was in charge of the women's exhibits. We worked hard to promote the fair and encourage participation in the crafts and food sections. For several days, a group of dedicated ladies assisted as proud women, men and children completed the registration process and anxiously awaited the judging.
When the fair opened, I spent many long hours in the 4-H Food Booth while my coworkers were in the barn with the 4-Hers getting ready to show their animals. It was a family affair and everyone had a great time.
My experiences with the Coweta County Fair landed me a position on the planning board of the Georgia National Fair. In the late 1980s, Georgia state representatives Larry Walker and Henry Reaves started a plan for a state fair to promote Georgia agribusiness. The result was the Georgia National Fair held annually in Perry, Georgia. I loved the trips to Perry through the backroads of middle Georgia to assist with the Exhibit Hall.
As things happen, my role with fairs has changed. Now we are the grandparents, taking two of our grandchildren to the fair. It is an annual event. Kenny and I watch as Callie and Reeves enjoy the rides. After the rides, we feast on the fair food and stroll through the barn looking at the animals and watching the 4-Hers as they show their animals.
Friday, September 19, 2008
Thursday, September 18, 2008
- Large canner or stockpot - deep enough to cover the jars with 1 inch of water. You can also use this pot for sterilizing your jars
- Large saucepan for making the jelly
- Food processor or blender for chopping the peppers in vinegar
- Canning jars, lids, and rims
- Large saucepan for preparing the lids and rings - see the box for directions on preparing the lids
- A jar lifter or tongs
The recipe in the August post is the same as below. The only change I made was to shorten the cooking time to 5 minutes which resulted in a hotter jelly. If you are growing your own peppers, allow some of them to stay on the vines until they turn red. The red peppers add a beautiful color to the jelly. Some recipes call for red or green food coloring, but I like the natural colors of the peppers.
Hot Pepper Jelly
12 ounces hot peppers, quartered, cored and seeded
1 cup white vinegar
5 cups sugar
1 pouch liquid pectin (Certo)
Process the peppers and the vinegar in a food processor or blender until the peppers are liquefied. Combine the peppers and sugar in a heavy pan and boil slowly for 5 minutes. Add liquid pectin and boil hard for 1 minute. Remove from heat and skim. Pour jelly into hot, sterilized jars leaving 1/4 inch head space. Wipe jar rims and adjust lids. Process in a boiling water bath for 5 minutes. Remove from canner and let sit for 12 to 24 hours. Test to make sure the jars are sealed. Remove the screw bands and clean the jars of any jelly residue. Store in a cool, dark place. Yield: 5 half-pint jars. Serve as a condiment with vegetables or pour over cream cheese for a delicious appetizer.
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
4 ounces pancetta, diced
1/2 cup diced celery
1/2 cup diced carrots
1 onion, diced
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 pound ground beef
1 cup milk
1/2 cup white wine
1-28 ounce can San Marzano tomatoes
2 teaspoons fresh oregano, minced
2 teaspoons fresh basil, minced
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
In a large saucepan, cook pancetta for 5 minutes or until most fo the fat has rendered. Add celery, carrots, onions and garlic and saute 4 minutes. Add the beef and cook until done. Add milk and simmer gently until the milk is absorbed. Add wine and cook until it is evaporated. Squeeze the tomatoes with your hands to break them into small pieces. Add to the saucepan along with the fresh herbs and simmer slowly for 2 hours. Serve with pasta and top with grated Parmesan. Yield: 4 generous servings.
Saturday, September 6, 2008
Friday, September 5, 2008
Monday, September 1, 2008
1/4 cup Parmesan, grated
Pour into a serving bowl and top with grated Parmesan and garnish with basil. Serves 2.