Baking and Jam Making

Baking and Jam Making

This week, one of the local markets had cherries for a decent price. I got cherry preserves in my mind. I rolled the idea around in my head for several days because I knew I didn’t have time to do anything with them. Meanwhile, my mother-in-law brought a small box of peaches from her tree. So yesterday, I broke down and bought cherries.

The peaches were small so i decided to boil them and then strain the fruit rather than peel and pit them. While they boiled, I pitted the 8 pounds of beautiful, yummy cherries. The cherries were then put in another pot to boil with sugar and cinnamon.

The cherries finished first. The first thing I did was to take 2 cups of cherry juice and add it to the peaches. Next,I put the cherries into 7 quart jars. 6 of the jars were sealed up and prepared to process through the canner. The last jar I set aside for a cherry pie.

Meanwhile, the peaches had softened. I strained the peach pulp into the juice and threw away the skins and pits, although I noticed that one jar has a pit in it. I added 3 cups of sugar, 2 packages of pectin and brought the mix to a boil. When the jam was ready, I filled 6 pint jars of cherry-peach jam.

Then  I loaded the canner and processed my jars. I love the way the finished jars look!

While the jars were processing, I made a cherry pie!

In a bowl I mixed 2 cups of flour and a tsp of salt. i then cut in 1/2 cup of cold butter. Before I started, I took a stick of butter and cut it into small pieces. Those pieces are what I cut into the flour. Once the mixture resembled small crumbs, I drizzled a couple tablespoons of ice water over the flour and mixed it in. I continued until I had a dough that could be formed into a ball. I then covered it with plastic wrap and refrigerated it for a half hour.

At the end of the half hour, I rolled the dough out to about 1/2 inch thickness and placed it into the pie crust. I poured the cherries I had saved into the crust and sprinkled a 1/4 cup of flour over them. I rolled out the rest of the dough to form a top crust and sealed the edges. the pie baked at 425 for a half hour and then at 350 for another 20 minutes.

This morning, I decided I needed biscuits for the jam. I found this recipe online and then changed it a little (as always…lol!)

Granny’s Homemade Biscuits

2 cups flour

1 Tbs baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

2 Tbs honey

1/4 cup shortening

3/4 cup milk

1. Combine the dry ingredients.

2. Add honey and shortening. Cut in until mix resmbles coarse crumbs.

3. Add milk. Mix well.

4. Make a dough ball and knead for a minute on a floured surface.

5. Roll out to 3/4 inch thickness and cut biscuits.

6. Bake at 425 for 12-15 minutes. They become really fluffy and golden brown.