Sep 02

Spicy Blueberry Jam

Spicy Blueberry Jam via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

 

Blueberries are a delicious, healthful part of summer, and something we preserve in vast quantities by drying or freezing.

But you just can’t bring home a basket of blueberries without turning some of those delicious berries into jam!

(Honest. You can’t.)

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This Spicy Blueberry Jam recipe uses Pomona’s Pectin and raw honey to preserve all the goodness of the blueberries without too much added sugar… and a blend of spices for a gentle, spicy twist. Note: To make a jam that is safe to can, it important to NOT use any more spices than the amounts called for in the recipe. It is okay to make substitutions, but the amount must stay the same.

This recipe is a variation of the Simple Classic: Blueberry Jam recipe in the fabulous book Preserving with Pomona’s Pectin.

Pomona’s Pectin is easy to use (find out how I discovered it here) but it is a little different from the “regular” pectin you might be used to, so be sure to check out the directions that come with the pectin. If you prefer to watch a video — or if you need to brush up on the basics of canning — click this link for tutorial.

Spicy Blueberry Jam via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of WildflowersSpicy Blueberry Jam

Needed:

8 cups of blueberries, organic or no-spray are best

Pomona’s Pectin and calcium water (don’t worry, the calcium comes with the Pectin.)

1/2 cup bottled lemon juice (I use this kind.)

1 1/3 cups raw, local honey

1 teaspoon cinnamon (like this or get quality spices here)

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (like this or get quality spices here)

1/4 teaspoon allspice (like this or get quality spices here)

A water bath canner, or a large pot with a lid and a rack like this to keep the jars off the bottom of your pot. When canning jam, I find that a large pot (deep enough for 1-2 inches of water over your jars) and a cooling rack work best.)

Canning utensils

Jelly jars, with (new) lids and rings. This recipe makes 8-9 half pint jars.

Spicy Blueberry Jam via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Method:

1.    Rinse the blueberries and remove any stems. Place the berries, 1/2 cup of lemon juice, 1/4 cup of water, and 4 teaspoons of calcium water in a large pan. Add spices and heat, stirring often.

2.    Add 4 teaspoons of Pomona’s Pectin to the honey, stirring to fully incorporate.

3.    Bring the blueberries to a full boil. If you like, you can mash the blueberries a bit, or leave them to burst, or not, as they cook. When the blueberries are boiling, slowly add the honey-pectin mixture, stirring constantly. Stir vigorously for a minute to completely incorporate.

4.    Continue cooking, stirring constantly, until the mixture returns to a full boil.

5.    Remove from heat, and place hot jam into hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch of head space. Process in a water bath canner for 10 minutes (remembering to adjust for your altitude, if necessary!)

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If you're looking to spice up your blueberry jam, try this recipe from Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Please Note: Some of the links found at Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers are affiliate links. I often include these links to illustrate exactly what product I am talking about. You may be able to find the product cheaper somewhere else, including your own grocery store! However,  if you use an affiliate link to enter a shopping site (such as Amazon.com), and do decide to make a purchase, we may receive a small commission. There is no additional cost to you, however these commissions help us to support this blog, and sometimes to buy dog food! We are very grateful for your support!
We only ever promote products and businesses that we believe will be helpful to our readers.

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Aug 29

From the Farm Blog Hop… Sourdough Bread

From the Farm Blog Hop

 

Happy Friday! And happy From the Farm Blog Hop Day! I can’t wait to see what you’ll be sharing with us this week!

Note: The link-up is at the very bottom of the page!

This week’s Featured Post: Sourdough Bread from The (mis)Adventures of a “Born Again” Farm Girl.

from The (mis)Adventures of a Born Again Farm Girl

photo credit: The (mis)Adventures of a “Born Again” Farm Girl

Learning how to make sourdough bread has been on my list for a while now. It’s much better for you than regular bread… and, much as I love my bakery, I would really love to be able to whip up loaves of bread for my family!  Now, I’ve never been known to keep a starter alive for more than a few weeks… but this post has easy-to-follow directions — and pictures! I think I’ll be giving sourdough another go soon! :)

Now, let’s get on with the party, shall we??? This week’s favorites:

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Congratulations! Please feel free to grab our button and display it proudly on your blog!

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Keep scrolling to enter this week’s party!

From The Farm Blog Hop

1. Link up to three of your best gardening or homesteading tips, farm-themed posts, recipes, homemaking and simple/frugal living tips, decorating ideas, DIY projects, craft ideas, thrifty makeovers or repurposed items, healthy and sustainable living tips, and giveaways.
2. Link back to my blog (using the rel=”nofollow” tag), or put the link party button anywhere on your
blog or post to share the love.
3. Make sure to check out some of the other links before leaving.

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From The Farm Blog Hop

We can’t wait to see what you share with us!

Note: Linking up to this party will automatically sign you up for an invite to next week’s party via email. To unsubscribe, please reply to any email you receive and you will be removed. Linking up also allows us permission to publish one of your photos on our blogs, Facebook, and/or Pinterest pages.

Warmly,Your From the Farm Blog Hop Co-Hosts:
The Homesteading Hippy | Sunny Simple Life | The Mind to Homestead

Spring Mountain Living | Timber Creek Farm |
Happy Days Farm | Better Hens and Gardens | Lil’ Suburban Homestead
|The Homestead Lady | Urban Overalls |

Once Upon A Time in A Bed of Wildflowers |Oh Sweet Mercy

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Aug 28

Walk Through a Wildflower Bed

Thousand Word Thursday // Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Thousand Word Thursday // Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

 

Thousand Word Thursday // Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

 

Thousand Word Thursday // Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

 

Thousand Word Thursday // Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

 

Thousand Word Thursday // Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

 

Thousand Word Thursday // Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

 

They do say that a picture is worth a Thousand Words. These are mine.

Join me each week for Thousand Word Thursday. See other posts here.

Aug 28

My Week on Wednesday… August 27

My Week on Wednesday -- Join me each week to find out what I've learned, what I've been doing, and read up on the different blogs I've been visiting! ~ Christine @ Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

 

Hello and welcome to another My Week on Wednesday where I take a few moments to share what I’ve been doing over the week. I share some of the blogs I’ve visited, and some of the things that I have learned.

The Harvest Season is in full swing and my pantry and freezer are filling up!

#preservingsummer

 

This is a great post about How to Get the Most Out of Your Tomato Harvest. And here is a post on How to Dehydrate Zucchini. This is my first preserving season with my wonderful dehydrator and I am having a lot of fun dehydrating everything I can get my hands on!

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My other new toy? Okay, it’s more of a book than a toy… Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving. I’m in love. And, yes, it has a TON of new jam recipes for me to try, plus some other great stuff — Curried Apple Chutney. Yeah, that’s going to happen. :)

Speaking of canning… check out this post for an amazing infographic on How Not To Die of Botulism. I’ll admit it: the fear that I’m going to poison my family does sometimes cross my mind when I’m canning. Not to worry, though. This post does a great job of explaining exactly what botulism is, and how to keep it OUT of your canned goods. (It’s not hard, by the way, but sometimes everyone wants to be reassured! )

And Roasted Garlic Pesto — doesn’t that sound delicious?

And Paleo Moussaka. Um… yummy! My mouth is watering just thinking about this one!

And, four Flower Infused Ice Cream Recipes. I think that Chocolate Lavender sounds the best… but I’m not sure. I’ll probably have to try them all, just to be sure. Which one do you want to try first?

Finally, this is an excellent Natural Remedies Cheat Sheet. I’ve used several of these remedies… and, though I’m hoping to never need to try the rest, it’s great to know them just in case!

Also this week we also took plenty of time out of our canning and dehydrating to squeeze out the last bits of summer fun. My kids go back to school next week, so we headed to the beach a couple of times to soak up the sunshine!

via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

And that brings us to the Quote of the Week. Approximately daily, I post quotes on my Facebook Page. The quote with the most likes, shares, and comments will become the Quote of the Week.

As it so happens, this week “approximately daily” means I never got around to it. Not even once. I am sorry. (I blame the canning! ;) )

But I won’t leave you without a Quote of the Week. This one was from a couple of weeks ago and, as it happens, was made at my best friend’s suggestion.

Quote of the Week // Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

 

You don’t have to be my very best friend to make suggestions though. If you have a favorite quote you would like to see turned into the Quote of the Day, please let me know and I’ll see what I can do! :)

Thank you for joining me for My Week on WednesdayTell me, what did you do this week? I’d love to hear!

Also, if you haven’t already, be sure to come visit me on Facebook and follow me on Pintrest! Be sure to come back tomorrow for Thousand Words Thursday and again on Friday for the From the Farm Blog Hop!

If you liked this post, please share it! :)

Please Note: Some of the links found at Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers are affiliate links. I often include these links to illustrate exactly what product I am talking about. You may be able to find the product cheaper somewhere else, including your own grocery store! However,  if you use an affiliate link to enter a shopping site (such as Amazon.com), and do decide to make a purchase, we may receive a small commission. There is no additional cost to you, however these commissions help us to support this blog, and sometimes to buy dog food! We are very grateful for your support!
We only ever promote products and businesses that we believe will be helpful to our readers.

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Aug 26

Persian Spice Stew with Summer Vegetables

Persian Spice Stew via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

 

If you know me at all, you know I don’t play favorites. I don’t have a favorite season, fruit, or vegetable. I try to enjoy each season as it passes, and enjoy the foods of each season in their time.

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But I’m not going to lie: From the first warm, spring day I start itching to make this stew! It might really be… ahem… one of my favorites.

It’s a quick, easy, one-pot stew that gives a unique twist to all that zucchini that’s exploding out of the gardens!

Persian Spicce Stew with Summer Vegetables via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Persian Spice Stew with Summer Vegetables

1 pound stew meat — venison, grass fed beef, or lamb

1 tablespoon of butter from grass fed cows (I like to use Kerrygold or butter from my local dairy

1 -2 onions, peeled and chopped

2-4 zucchini or other summer squash, peeled and cut into long strips

1-2 eggplant peeled and cut into long strips

3-4 cloves of garlic, minced

3-4 tomatoes, sliced

1 teaspoon salt (I like this kind)

1 teaspoon curry powder (get quality herbs and spices here)

1/2 teaspoon turmeric

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1 cup water

Persian Spicce Stew with Summer Vegetables via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Begin by peeling and cutting up the vegetables.This stew goes quick, so you will want everything ready before you start. (Trust me on this!)

Persian Spicce Stew with Summer Vegetables via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Place a tablespoon or so of butter into a big cast iron pot (I use one very like this one) and add a pound of stew meat. I usually use venison, but grass fed beef or lamb would be delicious, too.

When the meat is partially browned, add several chopped onions, and continue cooking until the meat is fully browned, and the onions are soft.

Persian Spicce Stew with Summer Vegetables via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Once the meat is browned, take the strips of squash and eggplant and place them in layers over the meat.

Sprinkle the minced garlic over the squash and eggplant, then add the tomatoes. Then sprinkle the salt and spices over the tomatoes.

Pour in 1 cup of water, taking care to wet the spices. Cover and rapidly simmer (on medium high heat) for about a half hour.

It is delicious served over rice, or couscous.

Persian Spicce Stew with Summer Vegetables via Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

Please Note: Some of the links found at Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers are affiliate links. I often include these links to illustrate exactly what product I am talking about. You may be able to find the product cheaper somewhere else, including your own grocery store! However,  if you use an affiliate link to enter a shopping site (such as Amazon.com), and do decide to make a purchase, we may receive a small commission. There is no additional cost to you, however these commissions help us to support this blog, and sometimes to buy dog food! We are very grateful for your support!
We only ever promote products and businesses that we believe will be helpful to our readers.

If you liked this post, please share!

PIN it HERE!

Looking for a new dish to help use up all that zucchini? Try Persian Spice Stew with Summer Vegetables from Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers

 

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