Tuesday, December 2, 2008

On The Joys Of Natural Pectin

Husband had to work on Thanksgiving Day and Little Girl and I picked him up from work and instantly started the 3.5 hour trek to his parents' place for the rest of the weekend. Their feast was long over (and the leftovers weren't veggie-friendly), so no Thanksgiving meal that day.

On Saturday, we had a late celebration with Husband's father at my B-I-L's apartment. B-I-L had, of course, already had Thanksgiving meals with his family, his wife's family, AND with their step-siblings. Three meals, two days. Whew! Needless to say, they were not excited by the idea of cooking yet another turkey-and-trimmings feast on Saturday and my F-I-L wasn't interested either, having had a traditional Thanksgiving meal at his work. So B-I-L made meatloaf and some sides, and I made roasted potatoes, roasted veggies, and some baked salmon.

This has left Husband and I without a traditional Thanksgiving meal. Obviously, we don't eat the turkey part, but I am extraordinarily fond of bread-and-sage stuffing and Husband is equally fond of what he calls "leftover sandwiches". Therefore, yesterday, I made the trek into town to buy two Quorn roasts (not being fond of Tofurkeys at all). Today is all about the cooking, which brings me to the title of this post.

First thing I made was the cranberry sauce. I like to keep it simple, so it was a bag of cranberries (sniff! not enough of my hand-picked wild ones left for this!), half a cup of apple juice, half a cup of water, a cup of sugar, a pinch of salt, and a teeny dash each of cinnamon and cloves. I let it cool a little in the pan, then transferred it into a tupperware to cool completely before putting it in the fridge.

Even without refrigeration, it is now a solid block of whole-berry jelly. I could slice it and it would stay in formation! I am always amazed at the jelling power of high-pectin fruits. Life would hold so much less joy and mystery without them.

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