Slow Cooker Star Anise Apple Butter

This butter is a delicious and a little fancy way to use your apples. I always make a lot of standard applesauce with the apple harvest around this time of the year but it’s good to make a small batch of something special and different. This butter has a complex flavour and smell and it gives your taste buds something to experience when eaten spread on bread. I usually pair it with some fresh fruit on the side but I have also tried it with a slice of cheese on top and as weird as this sounds, it was still very enjoyable.

 

 

Ingredients:

7 standard, supermarket size apples

2 whole stars anise

1/4 tsp dried ginger

1/4 tsp cardamom

1/2 cup sugar

7 dried apricots

2 Tbsp lemon juice

 

First core and chop apples into small cubes. I don’t peel them.

Place apples in the slow cooker, chop the apricots finely, which is annoying because they are small and stick to the knife but you’ll manage (I did).

Add apricots and all of the spices, lemon juice as well as sugar. Stir to distribute the spices evenly.

Cook on high for 5 hours.

anise butter

Once cooked, take the two stars anise out and use an immersion (stick) blender to process the mixture into a pulp.

Next, put it back on to cook before you start canning, just to make sure that you are canning very hot butter, straight from the cooker.

With canning, I use hot jars, which I kept in an oven preheated to 100C/212F for at least 10 minutes (sometimes longer if I forget that they are there). I also give the lids a bath in hot water from the kettle.

I pick them out one by one and fill with the hot butter, leaving  a little bit of space on top. I close them immediately and set on the counter to let them cool to room temperature over the next couple of hours.

anise butter

Soon you should hear the lids popping as they are sealing. If any of them doesn’t seal and the lid is not concave, treat it as open, keep in the fridge and use within a couple of days.

I have been canning fruit this way for a while and I haven’t had any issues but if you look online there is a myriad of ways to do it and some ways are safer than this one, as they carry less risk of some bacteria surviving in the jar. Pick your own method and be safe!

anise butter

 

© Julia M Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli, 2014-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material, recipes and images without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Julia M Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

How To Jam Just About Any Fruit

I organised this list by colours of the fruit so that we are starting with the almost white gooseberries and ending the list with blackberries. Looking for these recipes around the web was fun and I can’t recommend these recipes enough. Two of the recipes are mine. One green and one yellow. 🙂

 

  1.  Gooseberry Jam – This excellent recipe comes from a website called Carla Nayland Historical Fiction. Not strictly a recipe website but the ones that are there are certainly worth investigating further.
  2. Kiwi Jam – This one is from me and it is an awesome, crunchy treat. You just have to try this!
  3. Lemon Curd – I know, lemon curd is not exactly a jam. It is however a way to jar some lemons (with egg yolks) and enjoy them. This recipe comes from the online version of CHEFS® catalogue.kiwi jam
  4. Apricot Jam – A gem of a recipe coming from David Lebovitz. I will link to one more recipe from there since they are just great. David Lebovitz is a professional chef who after having significant success in restaurant business decided to leave the industry and pursue writing cookbooks while living in beautiful Paris. He obviously knows both jams and how to be happy, which is great!
  5. Peach Freezer Jam – This delicious recipe is from Recipe Girl. The author of this blog is a former elementary school teacher who is now a food writer full time. There is an amazing amount of her own and adapted recipes over there so do go ahead and check out that delicious website.
  6. Persimon Jam – This one is mine, get the Tattoo My Broccoli realness here.persimon jam
  7. Orange Marmalade – This preserve comes from Sarah’s Joys, a blog written by a California native who now resides in Utah and puts her delicious, amazing recipes on her blog.
  8. Red Currant Jam – This is another sweet treat from David Lebovitz, from Paris. If currants are new to you, do investigate them. They are a treasury to have in winter months, full of vitamin C and simply delicious.
  9. Raspberry Jam – This website is called Neo-Homesteading and comes to you straight from Pocono Mountains, Pennsylvania. Great blog as well as a great recipe.
  10. Cranberry Jam – Jamie from Love Bakes Good Cakes provides us with this gem. Cranberries are not only for Thanksgiving, after all.
  11. Cherry Jam – These three cherry jam recipes come from Chickens In The Road .com. I’ll take three recipes over one, it’s a good variety.
  12. Strawberry Jam –  This staple comes from Karrie and her very useful website Happy Money Saver. com. There is a lot more resources there. Be sure to check them out.blue leather
  13. Blueberry Jam – Or even 7 separate ways of making it. These come from Julie, whose website is a lot about self-reliance and living independently from the system, which I really love and appreciate.
  14. Blackberry Jam – his beautiful treasure comes from Rita Joy, who also has a lot of interior design projects on her website. This is definitely one to check out.
  15. Blackcurrant Jam – This recipe comes from http://www.womanandhome.com

 

 

 

© Julia M Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli, 2014-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material, recipes and images without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Julia M Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Homemade Sweet & Sour Sauce Preserve

Now that the summer is in full swing beautiful vegetables like peppers, aubergines and courgettes are in season. They won’t stay that way forever but you can preserve their summer goodness in jars and keep it for these winter months. Of course you can just preserve vegetables on their own but you can also save yourself cooking time later by producing a delightful sweet and sour sauce and use it on rice or rice and chicken in the winter.

peppers

Ingredients:

5 bell peppers

3 courgettes

1 small aubergine

1 onion

1 cup tomato puree

1 Tbsp dried oregano

2 Tbsp dried paprika

1 tsp cayenne pepper

1 Tbsp salt

1/3 cup vinegar

1/3 cup water

1 cup sugar

aP1060686

Cube the vegetables into small 1cm pieces. Place in a bowl, add salt, stir and set in the fridge overnight.

 

On the next day put the vegetables in a colander or sieve and let the juices drain. You will not be using the juices.

Place the vegetables in a pot and start cooking them. Cook for 20 minutes and in the meantime put sugar, water and vinegar in a separate pot, stir and heat until sugar has dissolved.

Add all the spices and tomato puree to the veggies, follow with the vinegar mixture. Mix everything and let it continue to cook while you’re prepping the jars.

peppers and courgette

Preheat your oven to 100C/210F and put four 0.5l/pint jars in the oven without lids for 10 minutes. I cannot guarantee that this mixture will yield exactly 2l/4pints so it might be a good idea to add another, smaller jar or be prepared to eat the remaining sauce within the next couple of days. Take the lids, place in a bowl and cover them with hot water from the kettle.

I use jars that I have kept after pickles, jams etc., and I don’t own any fancy canning equipment so this recipe is not calling for any.

When the jars are ready take them out and using kitchen mittens spoon the boiling hot sauce into hot jars and tightly close the lids.

Place the jars on the counter. In an hour or so you will hear popping sounds as the lids will start sealing. All of them should be sealed and you can check by pressing on the middle of the lid to see if it is concave.

courgettes

You can keep sealed jars in the pantry until you’re ready to eat the sauce in the autumn or winter.

 

 

And smile because you’re done and you have some delicious food for the cold months! 😀

portrait

 

© Julia Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli, 2014-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material, recipes and images without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Julia Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Kiwi Fruit Jam

This is late March and almost nothing is really in season. But I make some things year round – when I run out I just make another batch as long as I can get the ingredients. This is the case with kiwi jam.

kiwi jam

For this recipe you need to start with 1kg (in this case 9) of fruit. After peeling and coring them I ended up with approximately 900g of usable fruit. I removed the hard, white cores with a paring knife but I didn’t remove the black seeds and the flesh surrounding them. That would be wasteful and the seeds add a delicious little crunch to the jam.

kiwi jam
Next I processed them in a pulp with a food processor until I got a fluffy, light consistency.

kiwi jam

I placed them in a pan and cooked for 45 minutes, while adding the following:

kiwi jam

 

 

 

 

1 cup sugar

1/4 cup lemon juice

3 Tbsp gelling sugar (it’s in every store here in Norway, look in the section where they have all the sugar and flours for baking)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I made sure to stir a lot, just to keep the mixture uniform. Kiwis give a very watery pulp so it takes time for it to reduce a little bit and either way the jam was still as watery as juice when I was pouring it in jars.

kiwi jamkiwi jam

In the meantime I preheated my oven to 100C/212F and put clean open jars in there for 10 minutes.

I boiled some water in a kettle, placed the lids in a bowl and submerged them in hot water from the kettle.
I put on my kitchen mittens, took the hot jars out of the oven, through a funnel I poured hot jam into them and immediately closed them with the hot lids.

kiwi jam

Within an hour all the lids were concave and the jars were sealed.

Within the next two hours all the jam set, so that it stopped sloshing around when I was moving the jars.
This is the canning method that I use, very inexpensive and not requiring any special equipment. I keep my jams for 3 to 4 months and never had an issue. Once opened, I keep them in the fridge and use within 2 weeks.

I am not sure how long these jams could keep like that because they are always gone quickly.

If you have a pressure canner and want to use it, do it because at least you will have guaranteed results and you will be able to keep your jams for a very long time.

 

This jam is delicious on bread or in porridge when you want to add a little tropical flavour.

kiwi jam
© Julia M Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli, 2014-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material, recipes and images without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Julia M Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Persimon Jam – no special canning equipment needed!

During the winter not many fruit are in season but it is the season for persimon all the way from November through February so it’s a good idea to have some of that delicious fruit. One thing you can do with it is jam. Who doesn’t like some nice and exotic jam, after all?

 

I can see all over the internet that there are two spellings and both seem to be used interchangeably: persimon and persimmon. There are also two varieties of the fruit: fuyu and hachiya , I am using the hachiya, which is a little bit more elongated than the fuyu and also quite sour if not fully ripe. I haven’t tried making jam with the fuyu but I imagine it would work pretty much the same way.

 

persimon jam

For this recipe you need to start with 1kg (in this case 7 of them) of fruit. After peeling and coring them I ended up with 900g of usable fruit.

I peeled them with a vegetable peeler to minimize waste and cored them very much the same way I core apples. Cut them in 4 and then cut out the cores.

persimon jam

Next I processed them into a pulp. I first tried a stick blender but that proved difficult, so I switched to a food processor and worked until I got a fluffy, light consistency.

persimon jam

I placed them in a pan and cooked for 30 minutes, while adding the following:

1 1/2 cup sugar

4 Tbsp lemon juice

2 Tbsp gelling sugar (it’s in every store here in Norway, look in the section where they have all the sugar and flours for baking)

I made sure to stir a lot, because I could see the blended fruit could easily burn to the bottom of the pot. If this happens to your jam, don’t scrape but mix the rest of the jam and hopefully you’ll be able to use just the top part without the burnt mass in the bottom. You can also pour your fruit to another pan if that helps.

In the meantime I preheated my oven to 100C/212F and put clean open jars in there for 10 minutes.

I boiled some water in a kettle, placed the lids in a bowl and submerged them in hot water from the kettle.

 

And at last comes the final part. I put on my kitchen mittens, took the hot jars out of the oven, spooned hot jam into them and immediately closed them with the hot lids.

Within an hour all the lids were concave and the jars were sealed.

 

persimon jam

 

This is the canning method that I use, very inexpensive and not requiring any special equipment. I keep my jams for 3 to 4 months and never had an issue. Once opened, I keep them in the fridge and use within 2 weeks.

I am not sure how long these jams could keep like that because they are always gone quickly.

If you have a pressure canner and want to use it, do it because at least you will have guaranteed results and you will be able to keep your jams for a very long time.

 

 

© Julia M Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli, 2014-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material, recipes and images without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Julia M Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Tattoo My Broccoli Applesauce Recipe

Applesauce features in so many of my recipes that I know that by now I owe you an explanation. Using applesauce as an important ingredient in baking came to me after I got two jars of homemade applesauce from my partner’s Mum. I had them in the fridge and wasn’t sure what to do with them until I decided to google it and see what I can do so that it wouldn’t go to waste. And there I discovered the world of applesauce everything and I learnt how big applesauce is in the US.

Where I live now, in Norway, you can’t even really get it in the shop. I started experimenting and it never went wrong, so I loved it. Later I started making my own from bought apples and when the season came, also from apples I could pick. So here I am, adding it to pretty much everything now and making my cakes that small bit healthier. I want to be able to enjoy cake for many years of my life, so I’m trying to go easy on fat and sugar. Using the applesauce to replace the oil or butter in my cakes helps me do just that.

applesauce

There are a million and one recipes out there for applesauce but this is how I make it. And knowing how lazy I can be you won’t be surprised that I don’t peel the apples. Added nutrition from the skins makes me happy and my hands thank me for less work. I recommend that lazy approach to everybody. 🙂 This recipe also does not require any fancy canning equipment. Well washed jars after mayo, pickles or jams will do.

 

What you need:

apples

sugar (I use around 1 tsp of sugar for each apple but you can also go completely without sugar)

a saucepan

a knife

food processor or blender

jars

applesauce

Wash apples and quarter them, cut out the cores.

If using a food processor, turn the apples into pulp. If using a stick blender, just chop them with a knife for now.

Place the apples and sugar in a pot. If you have already processed them, it’s advisable to pour a little water in the bottom of the pot, so that they don’t stick.

Let them cook for an hour, until you can see the mixture is becoming thicker. Blend the chopped apples with the stick blender if you have chosen that method.

Keep the apples on the stove while you prepare the jars.

Preheat the oven to 100C/210F and put the open jars in there for 10 minutes. In the meantime, submerge lids in hot water from the kettle.

Put on your kitchen mittens and spoon hot apples straight from the pot into hot jars straight from the oven. Close with the lids immediately and leave on the counter.

After an hour or so you will start hearing popping sounds from the jars sealing.

Wait until the next day and check that all the lids are concave. If any of them didn’t seal, keep them in the fridge and use within a week. The rest can be kept on the shelf in the pantry. They normally all seal, as long as you jar the apples while still hot.

applesauce

Enjoy in cakes as well as on bread.

 

Applesauce is also a delicious gift to somebody you like.

 
© Julia M Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli, 2014-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material, recipes and images without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Julia M Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Enjoy Your Tea with a Lemon Twist – Lemon Syrup for Tea

Are you in love with green, white or black tea just like me? I get into buying these white tea varieties and drink them with a lot of pleasure throughout the beautiful, snowy Norwegian winter. But I have to admit that every once in a while I feel like having something refreshing and new. And I try for it not to be soda or some other fizzy badness.

lemon syrup

So this is my recipe for a homemade lemon syrup which turns your tea into a totally new experience. This recipe yields about 250ml or just over 1 cup of syrup. Google tells me that 1 cup is 48 teaspoons and you really don’t need any more than a teaspoon in each tea, so this will last you quite a while. I use a bottle I got with another, store-bought berry syrup because it’s the perfect size. A jar will also do well.

lemon syrupIngredients:
3 lemons
6 Tablespoons of sugar

Tools:
a saucepan,
a jar or a bottle to hold the syrup when it’s ready,
a sieve

 

 

 

 

First, juice your lemons. This is the part of the recipe where you have to work the hardest :D. I just do it manually, squeeze all these sour juices out of them.
You should get around 300ml of lemon juice from 3 standard, medium lemons. It’s a good idea to roll them on the tabletop a bit before cutting and juicing as this helps them release more juice.

 

 

 

 

Next pour the juice into a pot on medium heat and add sugar. Stir until all the sugar has dissolved. Wait for the mixture to boil and let boil for 2 to 3 minutes. This will reduce it a bit, so it will be less watery.

 

lemon syrup

Pour it into your bottle or jar through a sieve, so that any pips stay behind.

Enjoy in tea! Amazing!

© Julia M Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli, 2014-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material, recipes and images without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Julia M Wlodarczyk and Tattoo My Broccoli with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.