Friday, October 13, 2006

fruit of the vine

It is good to have friends that share their bounty... (thanks for the pulp- Judy, thanks for the grapes- Grace!)

I've been making these grapes into jelly and juice. It has been a good year for grapes. These clusters show it, but you can only imagine how they taste.

When I pop a grape into my mouth, I am transported back into time. I think I am about 5 years old, and I am standing in my grandparents kitchen. My grandparents grew grapes. I remember being able to look outside the kitchen window and watch them ripen. This was at the instruction of my grandfather..."go and take a look at those grapes and see if they are ripe yet"...he would tell me.

As a child, the grapes always looked and smelled better than they tasted to me. They tasted sour, and it wasn't until my grandmother added all that sugar and turned them into jelly, that I enjoyed them. As an adult, I love the tartness of the skin, wild and tangy!

My grandmother used to seal her jelly jars with paraffin, which is no longer recommended because it sometimes fail to be airtight. So, I seal my jars with lids and an open kettle bath.


Judy said...

The jellies look great. It makes me feel bad that I am not out getting the broccoli that is still producing. I guess I have to add that to my things to do list for tomorrow! I hate guilt! I think I will pull the plants while I am at it!

Judith said...

Those jars lined up on the sill are striking. What luxury to make jelly with the grapes! Looks like an excellent harvest of grapes. I like your memories. I remember eating wild grapes as a kid--finding them while riding my bike on a quiet road, the smell of wild grapes and popping the skin off before putting them in my mouth. Lovely!

Cindy said...

Oh I love how jars of jelly and jam look on my shelves in my kitchen. My problem is that I make too much, which is solved by sharing with family and friends of course. Grape jelly is my hubby's favorite, my favorite is strawberry jam.

Speaking of grapes and grandmothers, I have a memory too. One of the things my grandmother made was grape pie! Here's a basic recipe like she use to make.


Concord grapes
1 c. sugar
1 tsp. flour
Pie crust

Using Concord grapes - pick them off stems and wash thoroughly. Squeeze out the pulp reserving the hulls. Cook the pulp until tender and run through a sieve to remove the seeds. Add the pulp back to the grape hulls and bring to a boil. Remove from heat.
Using the amount of grapes for an 8 inch pie add the sugar and flour. Pour into unbaked pie shell and cover with top crust. Bake approximately 45 minutes

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