Monday, 5 October 2009

Plum Crazy

I've been playing "Hostess with the Most-ess" lately with visits from my mother, my in-laws, and other friends. With a few weeks off before the next round of visitors descend on us, I'm trying to get a jump start on my Christmas goodies -- mincemeat, Christmas cakes and a Christmas pudding. Last year's turned out very well, but I did learn one lesson -- Christmas pudding doesn't need to be fed that much alcohol. It was just a wee bit boozy!

I did have some success this summer with my preserving. Thanks to a generous neighbour who, whilst on horseback, picked a very large bucket of beautifully sweet German plums, Zwetschgen. After making a batches of plum jam and spiced plum butter (which turned out more like a sweet and slightly spiced jam), I used up the last with apple and plum chutney. We really don't eat much chutney, so I'm looking for recipes that call for it.
My summer's strawberry jam is almost gone now and my lemon cordial disappeared ages ago. I'll make a couple bottles of that for next year. If I get the chance I'll be making chili oil to use up the last of our crop and a batch of lemon curd. Unfortunately I've lost our favourite curd recipe, so it's back to the drawing board there.

The weather has been very changeable here, so we haven't been very touristy lately. We did manage to visit Schwerin -- interesting city (as it's the only formerly East German city I've been to), beautiful castle (do get the audio tour), and v. expensive park.

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