Monday, September 20, 2010

The Week in Review

As mentioned in my last post, John recently broke his foot. With typical determination, he coached a soccer game two days later. It's hard to see in this picture but he's wearing a large black boot on his left leg. I took along a chair for him and set it up on the sideline with strict orders for him to sit as much as possible. He didn't sit down once for the entire hour. *sigh* I do what I can. Thankfully, the boot did its job and his foot didn't suffer too much extra pain or swelling.

Two days later, he took off for Philadelphia and Chicago for a week of denominational and presbytery meetings.

Leaving me a single mom.

Common wisdom says that when the mom is away, dad will let the house go to pot, kids eat pizza and cold cereal for every meal and mom comes home to a disaster. Well, we didn't do a complete reverse, but the kids and I were back.

I did accomplish a few useful things, including canning six half-pints of basil jelly and six half-pints of tomato butter.

The basil jelly is something really new to me. We have all of this basil in the garden and John keeps pestering me to do something with it, so I started looking on-line to see what could be done besides pesto (this was after I had already made three batches of pesto). My first reaction was "Ick!" but when I heard the recommendations for how to use it, it started to sound pretty yummy.

I had never canned before but I borrowed a canning set from a friend and followed directions. The jars certainly came out looking lovely, although I haven't tried any of the jelly yet so I'll have to report back when I know how it tastes!

The tomato butter is an old-fashioned favorite of my grandfather's. I made it for him - I just hope I can find a way to get it to him soon! In order for tomato butter (tomato, sugar, cinnamon, cloves) to be appetizing, you must switch from thinking of tomato in savory terms and remember that it is a fruit, like apples or pears. It is odd, I grant you that, but quite yummy.


  1. How did John break his foot? And what do you put basil jelly on? (Or, upon what do you put basil jelly?)


  2. Hey, Christina!
    John broke his foot at soccer practice. He tripped over a ball, twisted his ankle and fractured the 5th metatarsal on his left foot. Very colorful bruises all over his foot and toes.

    As far as basil jelly, I've heard that putting it on cream cheese or goat cheese and crackers is good. I've also had people suggest experimenting with tomatoes on sandwiches, etc. I haven't cracked open a jar yet so I'll let ya know how it comes out. :)

  3. Oh dear! I thought it was the kids that were supposed to break their limbs, not the coaches!

    I love goat cheese, and I love basil, so that would be a good combo.

    Have you checked our blog recently?