Spring has Sprung

photo (32)

The best spot in the world.

Spring has finally made its way to Chicago. The sun shimmered this week and the air has begun to warm. Flowers have started to bloom and blossoms are budding, it is a great time to be in the city.

This past week in one of my yoga classes my instructor used Spring to guide our class. She made a wonderful point about the changes in the air. Spring is a new beginning, an opportunity to find balance in your life, a time to reflect and make changes. Our sequence incorporated a lot of balance asanas, all were a great reminder of the surrender and strength it takes to find balance.

I have been working to find balance in my life. It is a struggle to differentiate between work and relationships especially when your work is driven by passion, but my relationships fuel my ability to work towards my passions. I am using this new beginning, Spring, to remind myself of this balance.

Eating healthy is a big part of balance for me. I found this great blog Eating Bird Food and I highly recommend it. I recently tried their “Easy Strawberry Chia Jam” and I must say it was incredibly easy and great! Try it out!

Image (42)

Strawberry Chia Jam

Advertisements

Strawberry Ginger Jam

I am not quite sure why but strawberries have been super cheap as of late. I of course find it necessary to buy a mass amount when I see cheap prices. Recently a giant thing of strawberries was $2.00 which naturally meant I must purchase them.

I love making jam which made for an easy decision. I made strawberry ginger jam with my purchase and the result is a tangy sweet spread.

93

Strawberry Ginger Jam

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 lb of strawberries (hulled and mashed)
  • 1 packet of pectin
  • 1 c of sugar (I used stevia)- if you like a sweeter jam, add more.91

Directions:

  1. Prepare canning jars in boiling hot water. Have close to cooking area.
  2. Place strawberries in deep sauce pan and mash with a potato masher.
You can also use the food processor, just depends how fine you want the strawberries.

You can also use the food processor, just depends how fine you want the strawberries.

  1. Toss in ginger, pectin and sugar.
  2. Bring mixture to a boil, stir constantly. Once mixture is boiling immediately transfer to jars.
  3. Clean the outer rim of jar and place in a cool dry place for 24 hours, then transfer to the fridge.
Great with toast or Orange Muffins (recipe to follow)

Great with toast or Orange Muffins (recipe to follow)

rewind

Oh blog, I miss you! I have been wanting to update for over a month now but the free time I have currently is very limited. I know within a few weeks things will settle but for now… ah well the postings with be rare. I have a bunch of pictures and recipes to post and soon I will get around to it.

 

Because I don’t have time I figured I would let the world in on a dog treat recipe I made for Burt a few months back. You can find the recipe in my squaresquiggle blog and here http://squaresquiggle.wordpress.com/2011/04/24/go-annie/

There is also a blueberry jam recipe on that post as well.

Heres a little treat for you! I have been viewing quite a bit of Target Women for one of my classes

MMMMMM yogurt!

georgia peaches and homemade biscuits!

I love making jam. As I have become more comfortable with the procedure I have begun to create my own recipes. My strawberry apricot jam was a big hit amongst friends so I decided to continue pursuing different combinations. Good ol Georgia peaches are abundant at the fruit stand now which my decision pretty easy. In this jam I used peaches, white wine, and lemon. I am pretty pleased with the outcome! The jam is sweet and light. I enjoy mixing it with other jams. Oh yes, and since I was already baking I decided to make some homemade buttermilk biscuits.

Ingredients: 4 c of peaches, 4 c of sugar, 1 tbsp of pectin, 8 tbsp of white wine, 3 tbsp of lemon juice

I bought a cheap white wine that is said to “compliment fruit.” Get buck wild and choose whatever wine you want!

fresh peaches

First, rinse and then pit each peach. You can cube them if you want, however it’s not necessary because of the food processor.

Place peaches in food processor and blend until smooth. It is okay if there are a few chunks in the mix.

blend until smooth

Once the peaches are blended you can add the sugar. You may add the sugar while it’s in the mixture or once you transfer it to your pot.

mix well with fruit

Once the sugar is mixed in, place mixture into a large pot and bring to a boil. Once at a boil add pectin and wine.

pectin makes the jam gel

Bring heat to a simmer and stir for about 10 minutes. There will be a film at the top, this is okay because you will skim it off prior to jarring.

Stir!!

Prior to jarring use a spoon to take off the foam

To check if mixture is finished take one tablespoon and place it on a flat surface. Give the jam a few seconds to see if it becomes jelly like. If it does, start jarring!

funnels make life easier

Pour the mixture into a jar quickly. The jar will be hot so be careful! Once all contents are in, wipe the mouth of the jar with a wet paper towel and seal. Let the jam set at room temp for 12 hours or so before transferring it to the fridge. You can freeze your jam for up to 3 months if you choose not to consume it immediately.

all finished!

I whipped up some biscuits to accompany the jam because were having “breakfast for dinner.” I love those kind of nights.

from scratch... and delicious!