Nov 2, 2011

mint jelly

you've probably heard that you should not plant mint with other herbs, as mint tends to get a little wild. i had heard that too, but did not believe it, i had to see...well, now we have quite a lot of mint jelly...

managed to do the picking with cast...

the autumn has been so warm that ladybugs are still flying about.

got all this, and left some in the bed.

certain someone picked the leaves off the stems...

...but then he got sidetracked...

...we had limes but no ice...nice without ice, too!

despite the drink i was able to handle a motorized gadget, mushing the leaves with immersion blender before simmering them for 10 mins.

strained out the mush...

...and got this poison green liquid. i searched the net for mint jelly recipes, found this and this, both not quite what i was looking for. there is a recipe for "any" jelly in the melatin sachet, by combining all three i got "my" recipe for the jelly.

3 cups water
350 gr / 12oz granulated sugar
30 gr mint leaves (picked off stems, weighed dry, rinsed if dirty)
1 sachet blue melatin (i couldn't find any pectin anywhere)
2 drops kelly green food coloring (optional)

like mentioned, simmer the mint leaves (i think it might not be necessary to mush them...) for 10 mins, take off heat and let cool for a few minutes, strain the liquid into a jug, pour liquid into a clean kettle, add the sugar (and food color if using) and bring the mix to a boil, then add melatin (i had saved some leaves, minced them and added them into liquid among the melatin and 2 tbsp sugar) and boil for 2 mins (start the time when the mixture comes to a boil), meanwhile...

...i had a big pot filled with water, empty jars and their lids, heated the water to a boil, added some atamon (preservative that contains E211 and E210) into water to make sure the jars were sterilised before filling them with the jelly.

i managed to get the jelly into jars with just one hand but needed certain someone to close the lids. there was so much mint that i made a double batch, it seems we'll be eating a lot of lamb this winter (if winter ever comes this way...) or i'll have to find creative ways to use the jelly, or i know already what i'll give as xmas presents...

there was enough mint to take some with me to the cottage where i'll make (with mom) some more jelly. i think i might try adding some fresh ginger to that batch...will let you know how that turns out.

Nov 1, 2011

a job for a dog

meet reino, a karelian bear dog, a finnish breed hunting dog.

i met reino at the cottage today, after he and some people had done what these particular people do at hunting time. if you don't eat meat you might want to skip this post. there is no blood and guts, but pics of the kills. consider yourself warned.

there is a quota of how many and what kind (female, male, calfs) of moose a hunting club can shoot. today they got 2 of the calf quota.

this time of year you'd want to be wearing something red or bright when in the woods...

for such a fierce hunter's help, reino was surprinsingly mellow.

there is a lot of work to be done before any parts of these are on the dinner table. there are some pics of the procedure on my post from 2 yrs ago.