Belle Jar Canning

for the passion of preserving food


Cranberry Jam with Orange and Chili and a Little Healing

Here are some lessons I’ve learned recently. Don’t try to create new recipes the week before your Dad’s memorial service. In fact, don’t try to make anything. Don’t even try writing. And certainly do not think that if you do create something great and interesting, you will actually get to canning or photographing it. Also, read and walk.

My daughter and her drawing of Grandpa

Yes, my dad was young. He passed of ALS, known as Lou Gherig’s disease.

The day before driving up to Boston for my Dad’s memorial, this past weekend (it was intense and beautiful and poignant) I actually tried making Pear Jam, I had this idea for Pear with  toasted cumin seeds, fennel seeds and honey. It went awry. I’m not sure what happened, but then I was adding chopped dried apricot to it, and weeping over it, but not over IT. I’m not sure If I even considered it finished when I dumped it into a bowl with a lid and stuck it in the fridge. Still makes me teary eyed to think of the emotions involved in that ‘mess’. And wary of it, a little like the aunts in ‘Like Water For Chocolate” (if it wasn’t the aunts, I apologize, so many years since I’ve read it). Continue reading


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