Yesterday after sharing my recipe for homemade Raspberry Jam Bars, I realized that I have yet to share my recipe for canning Raspberry Jam.
One of the best things about canning Raspberry Jam, is that it gives you a great excuse to head out to a local pick your own farm to hand select bright red sun-ripened raspberries. Read more…
Ceres' Recipe Box
Homemade Raspberry Jam Bars
In the month of February the days begin to get a little bit longer and it is a thrill to wake up to a sunny bedroom in the morning. It may still be blustery cold outside, but I can not help but dream of warmer days that will be spent in my garden, at the local farm markets, and at an assortment of pick your own farms.
I long for the days when I can leave the house early in the day with great big empty baskets and not return until they are full of the season’s treasures. As the sun sets, I will sit on my patio with a glass of wine and a good book while our dinner cooks on the grill. Late into the evening when the weather has cooled and a slight breeze billows through my windows, I will begin the process of canning the brilliant flavors of spring and summer.
On wintry grey days like today in Ohio, I will go down to the basement and pull out a jar of food that was preserved during my favorite time of year. I smile every time I hear that Ball Jar lid pop open and I am reminded to hold on just a little bit longer, that nothing lasts forever, and this season too will pass.
Today as I popped open a gorgeous, jar of my homemade Raspberry Jam the deep red color reminded me of sunnier times. It was an absolute pleasure to use it to make Homemade Raspberry Jam Bars. After mimimal effort, my home was filled with the exquisite fragrance of raspberries, butter, and sugar. Because they are blissfully decadent, but easy to make, these cookies and this recipe will always hold a special place in my heart. So, for Valentine’s Day I am choosing to share a taste of my home and a cookie that we love with you. Try them with your favorite jam, preserves, or marmalade and I bet you will love them too.
Ceres' Recipe Box
Blueberry Bran Muffin
A few more minutes under the covers or a healthy breakfast?
Today was a bitter cold winter morning in Ohio and I did not want to get out of bed. For the 3rd day in a row, I traded breakfast for the luxury of pulling the covers high up over my head and hitting the snooze button on the alarm clock. For 10 minutes that seemed more like 10 seconds, I was able to stay tucked into the warmth of my bed. However, reality hit quickly as as soon as my feet hit the cold floor and like many morning before, I was in a full blown rush just to get out the door.
While shivering in my freezing cold car, I immediately regretted not having a hot cup of coffee with cream and something healthy to fuel my day. Knowing that a commitment to get up earlier was not the solution, I decided that as soon as I got home, I would make some Blueberry Bran Muffins for breakfast and set the timer on my coffee pot. Tomorrow morning, I will probably hit the snooze button again, but this time I will have breakfast too. Read more…
Ceres' Recipe Box
The grass may be emerald green and dotted with dandelions and violets, tulips may dance in the breeze under a bright blue sky full of billowy clouds, and the humming birds and bees may be buzzing in my garden, but nothing marks the true arrival of Spring for me quite like the opening day of the local farm stands and markets.
Living in Central Ohio, we are very lucky to have easy access to some of the best local and organic foods in the country. You do not have to go far off the beaten path before you will find your self driving down serene country roads scattered with both small and large farms. In front of many of them you will see hand painted signs advertising Fresh Eggs, Maple Syrup, and Honey. By Mid-Summer you may even find a small little table on the side of the road, placed under a tall shady tree, set upon it is most often a colorful bumper crop of home grown fruits, vegetables, and flowers sold entirely on the honor system. Something about putting your money in the jar, and selecting what you need while a tractor whirs in a nearby field is an experience all in it’s own and one not to be missed.
In the months ahead I will be taking my camera and exploring many of the local farm stands and markets surrounding the Metro-Columbus area. Sharing my findings in Ceres’ Secrets is already something I am very excited about and it seems fitting to start by sharing my favorite one first…
For the past three years, I have been very lucky to have had the luxury of traveling Read more…
Eating Local in Ohio
If you have ever tasted the delicate flavor of the first baby lettuce of the season or have experienced the joy of standing in a backyard garden while eating early garden peas right from the pod, then you know the pleasure the first crops of Spring can bring. Truly nothing can compare with how complex, rich, and concentrated their flavors are, especially just moments after they have been harvested.
The first produce to hit the local markets is bright, colorful, and crisp, its aroma alone could almost be considered hypnotic. Strolling through the farmers market it takes quite a bit of restraint not to overfill your basket and just run with it like there is no tomorrow. Instinctively, our bodies seem to respond to this colorful array with a pent up longing for the potent vitamins and minerals that we have been lacking through most of the winter. Not surprisingly, the items you find will offer your body exactly what it needs to shake off the last of the winter blues, energizing you for the longer days ahead.
If ever there was a time to temporarily discard recipes, prepare food by instinct, and serve it closest to its natural state, this would be the time. A light splash of lemon juice, a good olive oil, and the tiniest bit of sea salt is all you need to dress a salad right now. There is no need for anything complicated, the greens which are always most tender in the spring, speak volumes all on their own. The fruit is absolutely luscious and seductive dripping with juices when you bite or cut into it. Drizzle raspberries with the tiniest bit of local honey and serve them on thin baguette slices, which have been spread with an almost sheer layer of mascarpone cheese… one of my all time favorite treats! Truly, with very little effort, it is really quite painless to eat like kings and queens when you pause from cooking and merely assemble your food. Read more…