Good Things Grow

Cottage Chutney

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With bags packed full of inspiration after our trip to the local market, Shawn set to work over the past few days to carry on a tradition we started at the beginning of our relationship.
Pickling seasonal vegetables to share with friends and family has grown thanks to Shawn’s love of cooking into making chutneys, jams and a variety of sauces for us to enjoy.
This weeks creation was an incredible Apple & Pear Bourbon Chutney that we have been smothering on cheese and crackers, sandwiches and eating straight from a spoon!

Shawn’s Apple & Pear Bourbon Chutney
2 Apples, peeled and roughly chopped into small chunks
2 Pears, peeled and roughly chopped into small chunks
4 Basil Leaves, chopped
4 Tarragon Leaves, chopped
2 cups of White Sugar
2 cups of White Wine Vinegar
1 cup of Cider Vinegar
1/2 cup of Water
4 tbsp of Bourbon
4 tbsp of Butter
1 1/2 tsp of All Spice
a bit of Lemon Zest
a bit of Salt
Bring everything to a boil
Reduce to medium heat and heavy simmer for about 45 minutes
For a smoother chutney, mash it up a bit after about 30 minutes while it’s reducing
Yield: approx. 3 1/2 cups
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Preserving Memories

Cover Photo Pickling

Driving home from what we fondly started referring to as our “honeymoon,”  a 7 day reprieve from city life tucked into the familiar landscape of the family cottage, we flipped on the radio to help pass the hours of traffic, each passing minute as the country landscape fell behind us a reminder that our vacation had come to an end.

The program we landed on was fittingly speaking about the integrity of memory and how each time we bring forward a memory we are in fact revising it in little ways before filing it away again, now subtly changed and modified from the original truth of the experience. Having already recalled many times the beautiful memories from our week away together, it was hard not to think how wonderful it would be to preserve those moments and keep them safe from the alteration of our nostalgic recollections.
Pickling Garlic
And while the memories of our Honeymoon will continue to transform, one thing we were able to preserve during our week away was the incredible produce available to us this time of year.
 A tradition started by chance last summer after our first attempt at making pickles turned out pretty darn well and left us wanting more, encouraged us to carve out some time on this vacation to restock our shelves and hopefully recreate these coveted (by our families at least…) little spicy gems. After a trip to the weekly market in the nearby town, we returned to the cottage with a bounty of local beans and cucumbers ready to be pickled.
 Pickling Details
Our recipe is still relatively improvised but works off the rough outline below.
 Pickling Brine:
Equal Parts Water and White Vinegar
2 Tablespoons Salt per every two cups of Vinegar
2 Tablespoons White Sugar per every two cups of Vinegar
*Bring all ingredients to a bowl and keep warm*
 Pickling Contents
Jar Contents:
Cucumbers (cut in to fours) or Beans (ends trimmed)
1 Clove of Garlic
1/4 Scotch Bonnet Hot Pepper
1 Tablespoon Pickling Spices
1 Tablespoon Mustard Seed
A few sprigs of dill
Proper sterilizing and sealing instructions can be found Here!
 Pickling Final
Those hours shared working side by side to get everything prepped and canned, preserving each sweet moment just the two of us in the quiet of cottage life is a memory we will happily revisit and shape often as each time it only becomes more beautiful and full of love when it is stored away once again.
xo L&S