Earlier this summer a copy of Holly Farrell'sThe Jam Maker's Garden
arrived for me to review. It has sat in the catering department's in tray ever since, but now jam making time is upon us we dug it out. What a delight.
There's a peculiar pleasure in growing and using your own produce. You can square that if you have to process it in some way. I made three small pots of beeswax polish from the cappings left over from this year's honey harvest; fantastic.
Holly Farrell is quick to understand this. She also points out other joys of jam making - not just the delight of eating them! Enjoy the tastes of summer and autumn through the winter and the connection they make with the local - what the French would call - terroir.
There's a lot more than celebration about this book, however. It covers "garden notes" as well as "kitchen notes", so deals with growing the fruit you'll cook too. Some sensible advice in this section, although I find people could always do with more help about what varieties to plant and in what volume. Everyone always plants too many apple trees and under-plants soft fruit, for example.
The kitchen section is great. It's clearly laid out into vegetable and fruit sections. The recipes are easy to follow and many highly original. Carrot jam looks delicious!
The book promotes some more obscure fruit as well - Medlars
do well here and I grow them principally for their blossom, but now we'll be making medlar fudge. I Can't wait.