more on the cumquat project: the process of containment and storing the transformed fruit.
(as a recipe aside, at this point i’d added a few tablespoons of grated fresh ginger to the simmering pan of fruit, sugar and water, as per the recipe. so this is now officially ‘cumquat & ginger marmalade”)
once cooled a little, the marmalade mixture needed to be put into jars. over the years i’ve lived in the house there’s always been a steady collection of jars under the sink. a reluctance to recycle something that can be reused i suppose, and often they are filled with little treats from the co-op, or the bigger ones with flours/beans/nuts. and a lot of jam gets eaten in the house, so there’s a great selection of ‘appropriate’ jam jars.
one of the key steps that recipes emphasise in preserving is the sterilisation of the containers. in the past i’ve been fastidious, boiling jars in water for 10 minutes, drying the, not touching the inner glass. this time too i was fastidious, but relied on modern technologies to sterilise for me – they went through the dishwasher, and then i half filled each one with water and put them in the microwave for 5 minutes. the water boiled, the jars were clean and fresh, and left to cool on the bench. the cleanliness of the container so as not to contaminate the thing being preserved inside; the same way an archive box is clean, empty and meets archival standards.
so the sterilised jars are filled with the marmalade, and left to settle into the jar (and cool a little) before the lid is screwed on. most of them even worked to ‘suck’ the press button of the lid back in, indicating an unopened jar of jam (‘just like you get at the shop’).
and now all 9 of those jars have been sitting on my kitchen bench for over a week, waiting to be labeled and put in the cupboard, or given away to people (most are promised already). and in this project of endurance, of the length and effort involved in preserving things for the future, i still have a while to go.
Filed under: cumquats, preserving, project | Leave a Comment