Bramley’s Seedling Pie

Included in our box from Queener Farm this week, were enough Bramley’s Seedling apples to make a pie.  The Bramley’s seedling is a classic English cooking apple.

The first Bramley’s Seedling tree grew from seeds planted in 1809 bya young girl, Mary Ann Brailsford, in Southwell, Nottinghamshire, UK.  The tree in the garden was later included in the purchase of the cottage by a local butcher, Matthew Bramley, in 1846. In 1856, a local nurseryman, Henry Merryweather, asked if he could take cuttings from the tree and start to sell the apples. Bramley agreed but insisted that the apples should bear his name.

In 1900, the original tree was knocked over during a storm. The tree survived, and is still bearing fruit two centuries after it was planted.

The variety is now the most important cooking apple in England and Wales

I decided to make a classic apple pie with my Bramleys – – COnclusion below.

I don’t really like this apple for pie – not bad, but maybe not for the whole pie.  It was really, really tart and turned to apple sauce in the pie.  I like a little more bite in my apples.

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Canning Corn

We picked up 12 ears of corn from a roadside stand on our Saturday trip to collect our apples from Queener Farm.  It’s a beautiful drive down to Scio through Silverton, Stayton and Sublimity – rolling hills, tidy fields and beautiful old barns.

This morning I set about to shuck the corn and cut off the kernels (into a large wooden bowl which helps contain the kernels).  To each preheated pint jar, I added 1/2 t salt corn kernels to about 3/4″ from the top and then added boiling water to top them off.  Then I popped on the lids and rings and processed them for 55 minutes.  I have 6 pints in the canner now with more ready to go when those come out.

I also scraped the ‘milk’ off the cobs to make a pint or so of cream corn.

All of this for $3.00.

Summer Vacation’s Over Harvest – beginning of September

Today was a harvest day.  I picked tomatoes and squash from the garden, grapes and pears from the chicken yard, and blackberries from the hedgerow.

This weeks apples from Queener Farm that DH deemed “not eaters” have become a lovely pie and gone into the dehydrator.  The grapes were processed in the dehydrator (raisins), the steam juicer (canned juice) or saved to eat fresh.  Everything else will have to wait until tomorrow.

Spiced Crabapples

Ingredients

  • a pint of Centennial or Whitney crab apples
  • 1 C cider vinegar
  • 3/4 C water
  • 1 1/2 C castor sugar
  • 1 1/2 t cardamom pods
  • 1/2 t whole cloves

Instructions

  1. Wash the apples well, and leave the stems intact. Prick them all over with a fork.
  2. Combine the vinegar, water, and sugar in a saucepan.
  3. Crack the cardamom pods open retaining the black seeds. Add them (seeds and pods) to the saucepan along with the cloves.
  4. Once the vinegar mixture come to the boil, turn down the heat and add the apples.
  5. Simmer for 5 to 10 minutes, until the apples are soft, but not mushy.
  6. Remove the apples from the liquid and pack them into a jar. Strain the liquid into the jars, completely covering the fruit.
  7. Process in a water bath.

Spiced Honey Peaches

This year we have a lot of peaches on our sad little peach tree down in the kitchen garden.  They are bruised and bumpy and just not pretty, but that poor little tree tries so hard that I feel badly just feeding them to the hens.  I picked the first bunch, a nice big bowl full and decided to can sliced in a light honey syrup (just 1/2 cup of honey per 6 cups of water).

  1. Cut X’s in the bottoms of the peaches, dunk them in hot water for 45 seconds and then transfer them to ice water with a little citric acid (to keep the color).
  2. Halve the peaches, scoop out the ragged bits around the pit, peel them and cut into slices – then back into another bowl of water with citric acid.
  3. Pack them into pint jars, sinking a piece of star anise into each.  Fill with more peaches to about 1″ from the top.
  4. Add the honey syrup to within 1/2″ from the top.  Jiggle the peaches around a bit with a butter knife to loosen any trapped bubbles.
  5. Process for 25 minutes in a water bath (I use a steam canner).
Second harvest of the Peach tree

Roasted Tomatillo Salsa

Ingredients
  • 1 pint tomatillos, de-husked, washed and halved
  • 1 onion, cut into chunks
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1 jalapeno
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro
  • 1/4 t salt
  • juice of 1 lime

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat your oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Line a cookie sheet with parchment.   Lay out the tomatillos, half the garlic and half of the onions on it and roast at 425 degrees for 15 minutes.
  3. When the vegetables have cooled place them into a blender. Add the rest of the garlic and onion, the cilantro, a pinch of salt, the jalapeno and a the lime juice. Blend to a desired consistency.
  4. Process 1/2 pints 15 minutes in a water bath.