Monday, September 23, 2013

It never fails

You know how whenever you ask for something in your life, something you might need to work on, God tests you with that very thing?

Like patience.  I struggle with patience.  I've prayed about it, and sure enough, God tests me on it.  Every single time.

Kinda relates to all the produce I put away over the summer.

Time for fair...sure enough the corn or beans will be ready THAT week.

Time for school and work to start back up, ok, time for tomatoes and peaches.

It never fails.

Is it a cruel mother nature joke?

Is she laughing her head off right now?

I'm not sure.

This weekend... busy.

We didn't have to go anywhere, we just needed to get a TON of stuff done at home. 
I have one last craft show to do for the year, we have a Sunday School party for around 45 coming up at our house in a couple weeks, groceries need to be purchased on Saturdays since that's the only spare day during the week, and Sunday afternoons involve Grace's tumbling class 25 minutes away.

The grapes thought it would be a good time to be ready.

Joke was on me.

When I got home from the tumbling class, I went out to our own vines to pick them.  At least we have our own vines I guess.  That was the plan all along, to start our own, so I could quit buying them from the Amish store.

I picked 4 heaping bowls full.
Concord grapes.  They were big and juicy, and tasted very sweet.  The birds hadn't touched them all summer, thank goodness.

After cleaning them all, I got the lids ready, and started filling the jars up.
I used to use a water bath canner to finish up the juice, once I put the grapes, sugar, and water into the jars, but I had a friend give me a GREAT, and much better alternative.  Turn the oven to 200 degrees, and put your jars on a cookie sheet, and warm them for 68 minutes.  EVERY SINGLE JAR SEALS.  Put as many jars in the oven as you can fit.

I did only 31 quarts last night, but I still had juice from last year, so we're ok.
My recipe,  well, it was brought home by Brent a couple years ago when he visited an Amish house while selling building supplies.  The ladies were making grape juice, and of course he thought that would be a GREAT project for HIS wife, so he brought the recipe home. 

I've used it ever since, and it's easy:

Canned Grape Juice

1 c grapes in each quart jar (cleaned, with skin on)
1/4-1/2 c sugar in each jar
boiling water to fill the jar to 1 inch from the top
Process in water bath canner for 10 minutes, or in oven at 200 degrees for 68 minutes (on cookie sheet)

I do not put the full 1/2 c sugar in each jar.  Ever.  It's TOO sweet.

To drink, I use a fine mesh colander to filter out the grapes and seeds, and pour the juice into whatever container I'm storing it in.

Brent swears this is a concentrate and needs to be diluted, I don't always dilute it, and it tastes fine.  Only three ingredients, versus whatever goes into the fruit juice at the store...and this is made with REAL fruit.

THAT'S how I spent my Sunday evening, all the way up to 11pm.

My produce is DONE for the season.  Thank goodness.

1 comment:

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