|Clockwise from left: blueberry/ginger preserves, grapefruit marmalade, strawberry/rhubarb jam, pickled green beans, and pickled red onions.|
Eldest child, Kevin, is the former Marine turned golfin', cowboy mechanic living in Vegas. You know...that old story. The middle child, with an incredible family of her own in Iowa, is an Episcopal priest lovingly known as Father Beth. And then there is me...the artsy fartsy one living in the South with his big gay Valentine.
Certain accommodations have been afforded me due to birth order and financial status. As the aforementioned artsy fartsy member of the family, my career choices have been of a more...spiritually gratifying nature as opposed to anywhere near financially satisfying. I'm not living in a card board box talking to my pet shoe, but owning a house and jetting off to exotic lands at a minutes notice I ain't.
Which is why July is a challenge.
It is this month in which every single member of my immediate family celebrates a birthday. It is definitely Christmas in July in terms of gift buying and spending. So, during these economically trying times...which I call my twenties and thirties...one must become inventive when money is not at hand.
So...in a gift giving pickle? Pickle your gifts! In a jam about what to give? Give jam! If we are to believe what our mother's tell us, it is better to receive something that is hand made and thoughtful than another tchotchke or bauble to clutter up your house.
At least, that's what I'm bankin' on.
I am not going to publish recipes that aren't mine without permission (I'm nice that way). I floated around on the interweb, borrowed from recipes, and added my own twist to them. Now is the perfect time to play with pickling, canning, and...um...jamming. So get out those mason jars and tongs and play with your food!