Such Brilliant Ideas......My frozen Elderberries, stripped already of their stalks, were put with Cider Vinegar into a medium oven for four or five hours this morning, whilst I did The Washing Up, because we have a dishwasher that categorically refuses to do what it was invented for, and if it doesn't start to behave very soon, I'm going to dig a very big hole and bury it in the garden Children, because I'm big enough and ugly enough to squeeze a bottle of Fairy Liquid?
Personally, getting my head stuck into too many preserving books at once for the same produce or recipe is a very very dangerous thing here Down On The Funny Farm at any time of year.
Largely, because I start off with very good intentions; the actual author's recipe - and then I make the mistake of looking up similar recipes in other books, which ordinarily doesn't cause a problem, but when I've read every recipe in every book for the same kind of event, I go and get ideas all of my own?!
Telling Wellie to 'discard' the shallots once she's cooked them for a while in The Pontack Sauce is, shall we say, 'less than wise'?.....She's grown these babies from seed, nurtured them and grown them to perfection....Why would I want to chuck my Banana Shallots in the bin when they're now so full of flavour? And if I could use them in another dish resembling the same preserve, shouldn't I? So I said 'sod the washing up' and just got 'tinkering'....!
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm positive that I could include those aromatic homegrowns into an Onion Marmalade, a Red Wine and Onion Soup, and I'm sure a gorgeous Paul Rankin Pork Sausage in a Casserole wouldn't turn its' nose up at it, eh?!
Unfortunately, The Full Stop Fairy hadn't finished with me yet, because falling headlong into my chest freezer once again to reach to the bottom, (and nothing whatsoever to do with the Creme de Cassis or Framboise from last year that I tasted and decanted before noon today!) I retrieve The Fruits Of My Labour, finding carrier-bags-full of Redcurrants, Whitecurrants, small acidic green Goosegogs, Worcesterberries, Chockerberries, Sloes, Rosehops, Mirabelles, Gages, Plums, Physalis, Damsons and a veritable mountain of Raspberries and Blueberries- all of which are coming OUT of the freezer this weekend, into Lidl OJ bottles in the form of fruits preserved in freshly pressed Apple Juice from The Orchard, and 'water-bath preserved' for the next 12 month, for my utmost selfishness and 5-A-Day on top of James Martin Brekkie Pancakes during the Winter Months with homemade Yoghurt, or I'm A Monkey's Uncle.
But whilst Toppy'n'Tailing the Goosegogs (which is much easier done Kiddy-Winkies whilst they're still frozen? ), I was daydreaming, and musing on Sloes, thinking "How can I get Double-Bubble" from my Hedgerow Freebies? I concluded that it'd be much better to stick the mountain of them into the Rumtopf, or Kilner Jar, chuck a load of sugar and Gin at them, steep for months, and given that the berries aren't edible much, to then make an intox.intox.alcoholic jelly from the spent berries at the end of the line maybe.
But my point is this:
When does this beautiful Fairy stop sending you gorgous ideas to ponder?
I will stop loving her when she stops sending me brilliant ideas.X