Sunday, March 6, 2011
The Art of Making Grape Jelly
Realizing that the lack of garden crops would leave the shelves in the cold storage room barren I made every effort to come up with some substitutes to fill those empty shelves. First I started looking in and around my own backyard. Aha! Mom and Dad have an enormous grape arbor in their backyard and with mom no longer making grape jelly I gladly picked from their arbor an amount of grapes that would produce enough grape jelly for their pantry as well as mine.
The grapes were at their peak at picking time but I wasn't able to fit the processing of grapes to jelly in my schedule on that day. Not to worry, the weather was cool so I set them outside on a patio table under an umbrella in a somewhat shady area to hold them over until I had an opening in my schedule for processing. During their second night of being outdoors a mighty windstorm swept up onto the deck and flipped the basket of grapes over crushing the majority of them.
Another grape picking trip to the home of my parents sent me away with two bountiful baskets of terrific concord grapes. Wanting to be sure that I got the job done I started the process of straining the juice that evening and continued the process again on the next day. It wasn't until the third day that I actually made the jelly. This fall I'll do it all over again (with the exception of storing the grapes outside on the table).
To some it might seem like an endless chore, but to me it was a labor of love.