Cherry Jam

Cherries have been on sale in my neck of the woods for $1 lb for the past 3weeks.  Woo Hoo! Score for me. I have had my cherries for a couple of weeks now with the intent of making some delicious jam.

I made Cherry Vanilla Jam and Balsamic Cherry Jam.  They both turned out great. My recipe comes from a basic Cherry Jam recipe from Sure Jell.  It comes inside the box. 

Tools needed:
5-1/2 pint jars (per batch)
5 unused canning lids and rings
canning kit (canning tongs, plastic wand, lid magnet, canning funnel)
water bath canner or tall stock pot with lid

1 bag cherries (4cups cherries) pitted, stemmed, and chopped (not pureed)
4 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
1 box fruit pectin for jams and jellies

2 tsp Pure Vanilla extract
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

To prepare (sterilize jars) place in water canner/stock pot. Cover jars with water and set stove on high heat to boil. In a sauce pan place lids and rings on medium heat. Do prior to pitting/chopping cherries.

After pitting, stemming, and chopping cherries (easiest to use a food processer) add sugar and water and mix.  Set aside and let the juices extract from fruit for 30 min.  Add mixture to a large pot.  Let it come to a gentle boil and cook for 10 min. If using balsamic vinegar add after the 10min mark and then cook an additional 10min before adding the pectin.  If using vanilla do not add yet.  Add the pectin and stir until disolved.  Bring to a rolling boil and cook for 1 minute.  Turn off heat for the jam mixure.  When it has stopped boiling add vanilla and stir until combined. 

Jars should have come to a boil at the point. Lower heat to medium so that you don't burn yourself when removing the jars. Remove jars from water with canning tongs. Place canning funnel into jar lip. (keep clean wet rag handy incase jam drips onto lip) Fill jars 1/2 in to 1/8 in from the top of the jar.  Place lid/ring on the jar.  (do not over tighten or it will be near impossible to remove the rings when the jars have cooled) Place the closed jars back into the water bath.  Start timing when the water comes back to a boil. Process 5 min for 1/4 pint jars, 10 min for 1/2 pint jars, and 15 min for pint jars.  Adjust times accordingly for altitude. After processing time has been met remove jars from water with canning tongs.  Place jars on a heat protected surface to cool.  When jars have cooled completely check seal by pressing on the top.  If the lid still clicks it has not sealed properly. You can either a)place in the refridgerator as refridgerator jam or b) remove lids/rings, replace with clean heated lids/rings and reprocess for the times listed above. 

After jars have cooled remove lids for storage.  If you keep the rings on they can compromise the seal. 


Fresh Corn Salad w/ Shrimp

2 ears fresh corn
1/2 red bell pepper finely chopped
2 finely sliced scallions
1 seeded diced jalepeno
1 lime juiced
1 diced tomato
1 avacado (optional)
salt & pepper to taste

24 med deveined raw shrimp
2 tsp red chili powder
1/2 tsp lemon pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
4 T olive oil

Mix Spices and sprinkle over shrimp. Heat skillet (you can grill instead but brush with oil before adding the spice mix) add oil. When oil starts to smoke add shrimp. Fry until opake in color and the shrimps have a slight sear. Remove from skillet and add to salad.

With a sharp knife cut the corn kernels off of the cobs and place in a med. mixing bowl, Add remaining ingredients and stir. Serves 4

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream

4-6 very ripe bananas
peanut butter

Peel bananas and slice into pieces. Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet. Freeze for at least 2 hours.

Place the bananas in a food processor. Puree, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Continue until the mixture is creamy and smooth. Add peanut butter to taste and puree to combine. Serve immediately for soft-serve ice cream consistency. If you prefer harder ice cream, place in freezer for a few hours.

Summer Whiting

Can I just say that these microwaveable steam bags are my best friend! I use them all of the time for quick lunches.

Summer Whiting

Prep to finish 10min

1 dash lemon pepper
1/2 tsp dill weed
1T diced red onion
4 cherry tomatoes quartered
1/2 chopped summer squash
1 4oz white fish fillet

Place fish skin side down in bag. Add onion, tomatoes, and squash. Add lemon pepper and dill weed. Microwave 3minutes if fish is frozen and 2minutes if fresh. Let sit 2 minutes in bag once done. Plate and enjoy!

You can substitute lemon pepper with 1 tsp fresh lemon juice and a couple turns of fresh cracked pepper and a dash/ sprinkling of salt.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Creamy Chicken Taquitos

4oz cream cheese
1/4 cup green salsa
1 Tbsp lime juice
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp granulated garlic
3 Tbsp chopped cilantro
2 Tbsp sliced green onions
2 cups shredded chicken
1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
small flour tortillas

Soften cream cheese in microwave for 20-30 seconds. Mix first 7 ingredients until smooth. Mix in remainder of ingredients until well combined. 

Spoon 2-3 Tbsp of mixture into flour tortilla and roll up tightly. Place seam side down on cookie sheet, making sure they are not touching. Lightly spray taquitos with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt. 

Bake in 425 degree oven for 15-20 minutes or until edges turn golden brown. Serve with salsa, guacamole or sour cream. 

Makes 12 taquitos

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