Tuesday, 22 October 2013

The best part of being stuck indoors

Dreary grey weekend? Bring it on! Horrid weather outdoors means chutney and jelly indoors!

Who cares if we couldn’t go on a lovely outdoor walk? I got my exercise Saturday by peeling and chopping copious amounts of quinces and pumpkins (with the help of a dear friend, which made the job so much easier with a chat and a cuppa!).



Oh dear, we couldn’t find fresh horseradish root for the chutney recipe...so I substituted grated ginger.


Did you know that you can freeze ginger? Rather than it wasting away in the fridge, pop the root in the freezer. When you need a bit for a recipe, grate it using a microplane grater, skin and all. It grates into a lovely fine powdery consistency that melts into the dish, leaving all the peppery goodness of fresh ginger without the juicy, stringy mess!

Is that a distant roll of thunder I hear? Doesn’t come close to the comforting sound of a gentle thundery simmer from the preserving pan on the stovetop...



And, like magic, all those ingredients morph into a rich, thick, tangy, spicy melange of autumn’s bounty. Yes, I can wax lyrical about chutney...




Quince and pumpkin chutney. All these little bad boys need are labels and tops made with a variety of crocheted lovelies and fabrics. And then I can tick a number of Christmas gifts off my list!

But wait. Sunday has come and it’s even stormier than Saturday. More quinces to the rescue!


How can these knobbly, hard, tart little fruits go from dripping cloudy yellow juice into a bowl to this:


This is my first attempt at quince jelly, and though it’s not as crystal-clear and bubble-free as I’d like, at least it’s not cloudy, so I’m happy! A few jars have gone to a friend; one jar is open and already half gone in our fridge...


Very tasty breakfast eaten in the exceedingly dim light of morning.

And I’m not going to apologise for the dull photo quality – this is English weather, and there’s only so much fiddling with photo qualities we UK bloggers can manage!

So I call on us to embrace the low light, then I guarantee we’ll see it as an atmospheric choice on picmonkey and other photo enhancing tools: The English Grey Effect.

Time for more toast. Happy crafting!
Chrissie x



24 comments:

  1. Ooooh that all looks lovely, I bet the house smelt good. I too have been making Quince jelly and really enjoyed it - never done it before, pictures and post to follow ! Hadn't thought about having it on toast so I'll give that a try - put a piece of toast in for me ♥
    Kate x

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    1. Thanks Kate! Doesn't the jam make the kitchen smell soooo lovely? I look forward to seeing your pics! Toast is ready... ;-) Cx

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  2. D E L I C I O U S!
    love jooles xxx

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  3. I love the idea of "the grey english effect" I seem to get that a lot, I must be very clever!! The quincing looks great Chrissie, hope that you love the fruits of your labours! xx

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    1. Thanks Amy, the jelly is yummy, but I have to wait 6-8 weeks for the chutney to mellow...and after all that hard work peeking and dicing all that rock-hard fruit, it had better be good! ;-) cx

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  4. Ooh, that all looks so deliciously yummy - what a productive time you're having. I've been hibernating today too, mostly doing chores, but did manage to sneak in some knitting too. Time for me to head into the kitchen and get productive now too - dinner won't prepare itself...sadly!
    And I completely love the idea of the "grey English effect" - I think you should patent that - it's going to be around for the next 4 months at least ;-)
    Hugs xx

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  5. I have never tried quince before. I must try and get hold of some, yours looks so yummy I am a sucker for jams

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  6. I am having photo trouble too Chrissie with all this gloom. I picked what I thought were some pears last week and they never got soft in the bowl and now I have seen what they are DUH! they are quince. I have suffice to say never eaten them. I will plunder some more from the same tree next year and give the jelly a go. We made crab apple jelly and it was clear too Hooray! Jo x

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  7. Hear Hear Chrissie! We've no choice but to accept the English Grey Effect - NO more faffing I say! Looks like you made a fine job of that chutney and jelly making - never had a quince before, so need to try that soon. Thanks so much for your brill advice on how to make a basket liner. I'm going to start that soon once I've finished my Autumnal bunting and wreath. X

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  8. I have never made quince jelly before and it all looks very yummy. I really love these grey days, and especially if you can make so many delicious looking things. As for grey photos, embrace them! xoxo

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  9. Scrumptious Chrissy, toast yes please! A wonderful post and I think that the photos are just lovely Chrissie - bring a little atmosphere. Have a wonderful week, big hugs
    Dorothy
    :-)xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

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  10. Like Autumn in a jar, I've been struggling with blog photo's and English grey today, such a wonderful way of putting it.
    Clare

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  11. It looks so yummy at your house, and I like the darker quality of the photos, days are not always bright and shiny.
    Hugs,
    Meredith

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  12. Dear Chrissie
    English grey...sounds like a new range of paints to me. Your photos look terrific - bursting with all that autumnal loveliness!
    Best wishes
    Ellie

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  13. This looks like the perfect way to spend the weekend. I'm impressed with your efforts and I think your photos look great.

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  14. What a great way to spend a rainy day! Very productive indeed. xx

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  15. I have so enjoyed your post Chrissie, what wonderful things you get up to - and wonderful results too - it seems to me you can turn your hand to anything, and I swear you must have more than 24 hours in your day and that's cheating!
    Thanks for the tip on keeping ginger, I'll definitely use that for, although I use quite a bit of it, I always seems to finish up with a 'little blue-beard-bit' in the corner of the vege drawer!
    Warm hugs, Joy xo

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  16. What a wonderful way to spend the gloomy grey day! Your jars full of yummy treats will make perfect gifts with their little covers on, what a lovely idea! Love all your practical tips too, like storing ginger in the freezer.
    Hope the sun shines a bit soon.....it is keeping well hidden here today!
    Helen x

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  17. ohh I bet your house smelt wonderful and homely. How nice of you to spend the time doing it with a friend. the jars look great x x x

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  18. Oh you have been busy! I like the look of that quince jelly...although I admit I have never tasted quince or actually seen one in real life actually!!!
    Marianne x

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  19. Hi, I've just discovered your gorgeous blog via Deb Hickman and have become your latest follower. I have been admiring some of your beautiful makes and plan to have a go at the easy bread soon. Thank you for sharing your WIPs. Best wishes, Pj x

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    1. Thank you so much PJ, and welcome! Let me know how the bread turns out...and if it lasts more than a few hours - ours was gobbled up remarkably quickly! :-) Cx

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  20. What a lovely productive day you had ... and thanks for the ginger tip ... ingenious :) ... Bee xx

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  21. Finally someone told me for certain that it is quince I have in my garden. Unfortunately most of the fruit is gone for this year, but next year I will use them all! Your jelly looks great!
    Anna

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