Summer’s Bounty: jewels in a jar

I hope you are all keeping warm! One of my favorite things on a chilly or rainy day is to toast up a slice of multi-grain bread until it’s golden brown and then slather sweet or spicy homemade jam on top. I usually add a cup of steaming coffee or tea and curl up under a blanket. What a wonderful way to enjoy the day!

And since it’s both chilly and rainy with snow blanketing the yard, I thought today would be the perfect day to share these wonderful pictures of the jam I put up with a friend this fall. I do believe there are 19 jars here: each contains something tasty, made from the spoils of the garden at my parents’ home. The land is very kind to them and their baskets are overflowing from July through September. (as some of you may know, this can be an overwhelming feeling…drowning in zucchini!)

From left we have dill pickles, pickled green beans, apple butter and grape jelly. The pickles were made by adding cucumber chunks and brine to the jar and then sealing the jar. These needed to sit and think for a few weeks before being enjoyed. The same goes for the pickled green beans. These are great in salads or as a pickle substitute – they are crunchy and delicious. The apple butter was made in a crock pot while my friend and I were out wandering around thrift stores. When we arrived home, the warm cinnamon smell greeted us and enticed us to have toast right then! The grape jelly was made from the juice of a group of concord grapes that had been waiting in the freezer for just the right day. I enjoy seeing the sun light up the jewel tones in the jams.

If you get a few minutes today, please snuggle up in a warm blanket and enjoy a piece of toast with sweet jam smeared on top. Oh, and don’t forget the cup of piping hot tea!