Jam, Tomatoes, Squash, Blueberries

Yes, we are making more jam. Blueberry this time! Two kinds: straight up blueberry jam and a blueberry-lime jam. Plus a few pickles, just for fun.

Here is our blueberry-basil vinegar recipe. You can make your own wine vinegar, something I'll have to try. For now I buy mine at the grocery store. It is also sold in bulk at some food co-ops, like the one near us.

Blueberry Basil Vinegar

Lightly crush 4 cups of blueberries (I used my hands but potato masher would do) with 1 cup of white wine vinegar in a glass bowl. Add 3 more cups of vinegar. Crush 1 cup of basil. Add the basil and the zest of one lemon to the blueberry-vinegar mixture. Cover the bowl with waxed paper and secure. Let the vinegar steep in a cool, dark place for 4 weeks, stirring every 2 to 3 days. Strain vinegar through several layers of cheesecloth. Heat vinegar to 180 degrees F. Ladle hot vinegar into hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Adjust 2-piece caps. Process for 10 minutes in a boiling-water canner. And a note: 1/4 cup of fresh blueberries can be added to the vinegar before canning.

I finished The Dress for 'A' - the sundress that replaces her very favorite too-small sundress from last year. She picked the fabric, I picked the pattern, and now it's finally ready to wear. She'll wear it to the UU service tomorrow morning. Look at the photo of the inside - I love french seams! They hide all the yuckiness and make the dress practically reversible. I am so happy with the way this turned out!

Today we built a makeshift pulley system for the tomatoes (they're getting a bit tall). I know that building such a structure means we've jinxed it. Is blight going to come to our home again this year and take our crop away? This morning I found evidence of squash borer in almost all of the zucchini, ronde de nice, crookneck and the pattypan squash. I removed the borers and tied up the wounds with old nylon stockings and I'm hoping for the best. It was last year at about this time that our squash succumbed to the borer. This year I planned out the garden with the borer in mind. Surrounding the squash plants I have nasturtium, marigolds and dill, all of which are supposed to keep the borer away. I didn't spray with spinosad as a preventative measure, but now I'm wondering if I should have. I guess you live and learn, right?

The herbs are doing great. Today I harvested 14 bunches of thyme and told Jeff that I would love to run an herb farm and grow more thyme than I can ever imagine. Shortly after that conversation I spoke to my mother on the phone and without me saying a thing about the thyme, she told me about an herb farm she just discovered near her home, and she said we'll just have to take a visit out there the next time I come to see her. "It's right up your alley!" she said. What a great mother-daughter flow.

I've got jam cooling on the counter, babes in bed, two cats snuggled up for the night, a tired husband getting over a cold, and a beautiful dress ready to be worn tomorrow morning. My work here is done for the day. Have a great night.


tree Says:

Thank you for posting this recipe! Our blueberries are almost done, the ones left on the bushes are small and not quite as sweet...but i think they would be perfect for this.

Love the dress too. :)

Such great pictures of everything! i'm still learning the whole blogging thing. i always decide to blog about things after the fact, so i never have picture to go along with it. lol. i'm still learning.

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About Me

My name is Jillian. I started this blog as a way to experiment with my camera and it's a become a nice little spot where I enjoy spending time. I'm a mother to 6 and 4 year old daughters, wife to a cool computer guy, and mama to a cuddly cat. We enjoy eating local, organic food; managing several food allergies; homeschooling with love; spending time in nature; and we love to take time each day to be creative. You can also find me over at From Scratch Club from time to time. Welcome!