Welcome to our Gardening Club Rhydlewis and District Gardening Club has been around since the time of Adam and Eve. In fact, it is believed that one of our members planted and tended the very apple tree that gave rise to the pair being expelled from the garden!!

Whether this urban myth is true or not, the club is here to encourage, improve and extend the members' knowledge of all branches of horticulture. It is open to everyone and new members are all always welcome to come along.

Our activities during the year include a varied programme of talks and social events, summer garden visits, a plant sale, social gatherings/bbq and an annual open show in August.

Friday, 5 February 2016

Preserving From Your Garden

Thank you, Vicky Wade, for a very comprehensive talk and demonstration on preserving all the fruit and vegetables (and eggs!) we harvest from our garden. 

Vicky covered making jams, jellies, chutneys, pickles, and many other preserves. As this was our January talk, and Seville oranges are in the shops, she showed us, step by step, how to make marmalade. 

Vicky fascinated us all with stories of her own childhood, helping her mother in a 50's kitchen with produce from their allotment. She had many handy tips, including this one…

(Taken from the Sainsbury book of Preserves and Pickles by Heather Lambert.)

Test for Pectin
Put 1 teaspoon juice from the pan (of cooked fruit) into a small glass. Leave until cold, then add 3 teaspoons methylated spirit. Shake gently and leave for 1 minute.
A jelly like lump indicates plenty of pectin present and up to 750 g (1.5 lb) sugar can be added for each 500 g (1 lb) fruit pulp and juice;
 2 or 3 less firm clots shows moderate pectin and 500 g (1lb) sugar can be added for each 500 g (1 lb) fruit pulp and juice.
The more sugar you add the greater the yield will be without affecting the sweetness of the jam.

I have found this pectin test particularly useful when I haven't been following a recipe precisely or have an odd quantity of fruit for which I need to check how much sugar is required.

And don't forget that there are great  preserving recipes to follow in Judith Russill's book:
"Judith's Dark Secrets - in the kitchen" 
now only £2, and available from Rhydlewis House, (01 239  851748) or from the Bridge Stores.

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