Latest news from the cherry jam front – the wave of berries is progressing, threatening to engulf me in a wave of strawberries waiting to be processed, taking up entire shelves of the refrigerator, lurking in corners when I thought I had done the previous batch. Heaving a sigh of relief because the final pot is sealed and filled, I turn around only to get the kitchen table groaning beneath a fresh sea of freshly selected berries waiting to be sorted.
There’s not any more space on the larder shelves for jam – what I have there already will probably last us a decade in the present rate of consumption, I have used up all of the jam jars and’m down to strangely shaped mustard jars, coffee jars and outsized sauce jars and there are still a fantastic couple weeks of strawberry season to go.
I must begin selling the jam….memories of a movie, where ex-city career girl, moves to state with baby in tow, begins making apple puree baby food and ends up with a complete Critter Control company employing half the village, flit through my mind. Country infant was her label, with a cute picture of baby, made to appeal to other city folks searching for the fantastic life. Mind you she was a PR man, so had a head start on boosting things and I am not a business person in any way, just someone with too much jam in their hands, larder shelves and everywhere else in the home.
It is not a difficult product to market, people are predisposed in its own favour; the cost just has to ben’t too frightening. No I am not about to turn into a strawberry shake millionaire, but I did sell ten jars.
After thinking I had got the jam consistency sorted, making reliably runny but not too runny jam, I turned out several batches which place completely – thick solid stand-up-your-spoon-in jam. I did leave it soaking in the sugar longer since I did not get around to cooking it until the day, but does this do anything to pectin levels?
Anyhow, I have two kinds of strawberry jam – thick and runny, both possess a fantastic flavour – and both sorts have their aficionados. However, now the dilemma is, am unable to replicate the thick jam to order or will it just happen by accident? A wing and a prayer is similar to it. So prayer it will have to be, if my market clients return demanding thick strawberry jam!