Bringing in the Spring Harvest

Spring arrived, and along with it a beautiful bounty of fruits are filling the property at my uncles house. We've been spending lots of time visiting with family and spending time with the animals. The kids have loved that! And now that the trees are bending with the fruits of the season, they are happy to help collect from the trees so that I can make yummy jams, jellies, and pies.

There are a few challenges to working on my uncles property. It sits on the side of a hill, so reaching the fruit from the tops of the trees is nearly impossible in some places. Since we were lacking in the proper tools, we improvised! It may seem like a rather crude version of this lovely fruit picking basket that you can order online for $30+, but it worked just as well, and was not anywhere near that price.  And the pretty tape was a nice touch, thanks to my Homemakers kit from Brit + Co.

You simply need a broom handle, a 15 oz can (or whatever size you prefer for your fruit), and Duct Tape. If you'd like to have a sharper edge to your can to cut the stems of your fruit, you can use some metal cutting sheers to cut a V shape before you tape your can around the broom handle. Easy-peasy.
Worked fantastic! And it is especially helpful for us gals who happen to be a whopping 5 ft 1 inch. Ladder not needed!

 And take a look at these beauties!

 Loquats are one of those fruit that can make you wonder a bit. What do you make with them? What can you pair them with? Personally, this was the first time I've ever cooked anything with them. I remember as a child eating them straight of the tree, so Google and Pinterest were my best friend when I was looking how to prepare them.
I chose the jam route, and paired them with some Rosemary. The flavors were beautiful together. It's a simple recipe that I threw together, but could easily be multiplied to suite how much fruit you have to use. Enjoy!

Loquat + Rosemary Jam

1 cup of pitted and chopped loquats
1 cup of sugar
1/2 cup of water
1 tsp gelatin 
1 sprig of rosemary, plus 1 tsp minced rosemary leaves reserved

In a medium sauce pan put your Loquats, sugar, and water. Bring to a boil, and turn to low to simmer for about 40 minutes, or until the fruit is opaque and thicker like a syrup. Melt your gelatin in a tablespoon of water and add to your pan. Cook for about 5 more minutes. The jam will thicken slightly as it cools. Preserve in a canning jar according to packaging instructions, or reserve in the refrigerator. (In our case, it only lasted a few days, but I imagine it could keep for quite some time!)

Happy Spring!

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