yeah, so don’t let those pretty little jars fool you.
I did indeed make homemade blackberry jam yesterday. A labor of love for my husband. Seedless and old-fashioned canned and everything.
I also nearly burned the house down and have a blister the size of a dime on the base of my thumb to prove it. Because when you use a pot that is too small for 4 cups of prepared blackberries and 8 cups of sugar and one box of pectin AND a 1/4 of lemon juice and then you bring it to a “gentle rolling boil”, well, let’s just say it doesn’t stay gentle for long.
That pot of jam boiled all over my stove top and my hardwood floor and my kitchen cabinets. It scorched dishtowels and the innocent simmering green beans and my thumb when I tried to stop the bursting black mess on the burner by swiping at it with a sopping towel. (i know, i know, not my smartest move.) Finally a big cup of water and the box of baking soda kept that mess in check. In the meantime, the smoke alarm was going off (nice to know it works!) and my seven year old was hiding on the porch with the little ones.
Not my finest Pinterest moment.
But as I camped out by the sink with my hand under cold water and surveyed the damage, I managed a little survey of myself also. You see, I’m impulsive with recipes and directions. I don’t always read from beginning to end and I’m notorious (at least to my husband) for substituting ingredients because I didn’t check before I started to make sure I had what I need.
And in the case of the jam, I had an inkling (okay, a warning) that this would happen. You see, I had to bring the fruit and pectin to boil before I added the sugar. Which I did. And I noticed then that the pot wasn’t quite big enough. But I forged ahead because who wants two pots to wash when I can make do with one?
Or rather, who wants to wash two pots instead of the floor, the counter, the sink, the dishtowels, and the stove top?
I don’t think my stove will ever be the same. But then again, I might not either. I think I’ve learned a lesson the big-burning-blister hard way:
sometimes it’s better to slow down and actually follow directions if you don’t want to end up with a sticky mess.
And yes, I finished making that stupid jam. It might not set correctly. I think I false sealed a few lids. Oh, well. I’ll just make a batch of biscuits and it will all be gone in a week anyway.
Linking up with Crystal for the first time today!