Tuesday, September 23, 2014

How to make Crab Apple Jelly

I have a secret garden. It isn't much of a secret as I keep telling people. I also have plans of putting up a sign, leading to my secret garden. It consists of 3 apple trees, two of which are in full blossom this year. I plan on planting more veggies and flowers in this garden and maybe building a bench. This afternoon, I gathered up a grocery bag and filled it with apples.

Cut away the stem and the blossoms and then cut your apples into quarters if large and in half if small. It's okay to leave the core and the seeds intact. Add water until it reaches the top of the apples. Bring to a boil and reduce to medium heat. Cook the apples until soft. Feel free to mash them up a little.

Place the apple sauce mixture into a cheese cloth and allow the juice to drain. 

Take 5 cups of the apple juice

Don't double up the batch because the jelly might not set properly. 

1 pack of regular pectin 

It isn't necessary for crab apples because they have their own natural pectin. I still like to add it.

and 7 cups of sugar

If you want low sugar jelly, replace the regular pectin with no-sugar pectin and use only 4.5 cups of sugar or low calorie sweetener. 

Make sure your jars and lids have all been sterilized. Bacteria can spoil the batch.

Boil the juice, pectin and sugar mixture for approximately 10 minutes. Spoon off any foam. You can test it's thickness by putting a spoonful on a saucer and sticking it in the freezer for a couple minutes. If it is thick enough fill your bottles up and process them.

Afterwards, unscrew the metal rings and let the containers sit untouched overnight. If any of the lids didn't seal correctly place that jar in the fridge and use it up right away. The sealed jars should be stored in a dark place and can be kept fresh for about 8 months. Don't forget to label and date your jars!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Growing Black Beans

Friday, September 5, 2014

Review - Grandiose Mascara by Lancome

I am so thrilled that I get to be one of the first to try Lancome Canada's new mascara, Grandiose! I received it as part of my Lancome Influenster Voxbox. First of all, I love the package design. It is beautiful and sleek. It is probably the first mascara tube that I have considered to be 'pretty'. The unique design doesn't end there. The applicator wand is designed for maximum comfort and ease of application. The shape of the wand is so unusual that I was a little hesitant to use it. I was surprised with how well it functioned.

Look at the volume and definition that I get wearing Grandiose mascara! I've never had this much volume with any mascara! It defines the smallest lashes. I didn't realize my lashes were so long! The mascara retails for $36 and while it is a little outside of my budget, it is certainly worth the price. This high end mascara delivers!

Disclaimer: I received this product on behalf of Lancome and Influenster as a gift. My opinions are my own and are based upon my personal experience with the product. Interested in Influenster? I still have a few email invites left.