Jam season

The Mister’s making jam in Awakeri again. He does it every year however, this year he’s fueled by hopes of winning Wellington’s Jam Off 2011 after being pipped at the post by Mrs Jam-off last year … those following my blog for the last year will know about this taste-test that turned into a full blown competition blocking shoppers in the Old Bank Arcade in Wellington with half of Xero and other famous faces like Simon Gault as judge in attendance! This year competition has heated up with an official website, judges lined up already and several other contestants – www.jamoff.co.nz

He’s been experimenting the last couple of days and wanting to experience it all from cane to table we had to accompany him picking yesterday and get to finally meet Monica, the owner of Julian’s Berry Farm in Whakatane who’s supplied the fruit via Mother these last few years.

Off we set with our containers to the tay berry row upon Monica’s advice that they made the best jam, a kind of cross between a loganberry and a boysenberry. Wanting to out-do Mrs Jam-off The Mister didn’t need to be encouraged to try something ‘special’. Except the row was picked bare! The 4 of us picked painstaking along the row getting a few here and there until we got half way along and found a bush that everyone else had obviously given up on before getting that far so we managed to get 2 punnets of tay berries. The boysenberries the next row over looked so inviting that we got a couple of punnets of those as well.

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We dropped them off with Monica before heading out to the raspberry patch but were dismayed to find out that we hadn’t collected 2 punnets of tay berries at all, they were all boysenberries … seems a couple of rogue self-seeded boysenberries had popped up in that row!

Picking raspberries was really hard work … the canes were really picked over and it took rather a long time in the blazing sun to end up with just 2 punnets and there were so many ants! I was rather hot and sticky and fidgety about having ants in my pants by the time we got back to the car. However, The Mister was proud of his haul, he and Monica discussed recipes and we were sent on our way with a bunch of pamphlets to hand out at Jam Off 2011.

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The Mister made his first batch of boysenberry later that afternoon – the freshest jam you can get!

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Orange Sister and Father waded in to offer squashing and stirring help for an experimental batch of gooseberry marmalade.

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This afternoon he’s into familiar territory using raspberries – this latest concoction has been decided as the winner by Mother already!

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Orange Sister has decided she rather liked yesterday’s gooseberry marmalade and tried with a few added extras today – perhaps it’ll be entered into Jam Off 2011 as well!

Xmas 10 jam time

We haven’t really left Mother with any jars this trip, perhaps we’ll have enough to give some away to friends this year …

Xmas 10 jam time


#1 Catherine on 12.30.10 at 8:48 pm

Argh! Now I’m panicking, stuck in Sydney and missing prime berry season… I see I’m going to have to have to take it up a notch when I get back, as the Mister’s jam looks pretty damn good! Hope you had a great Christmas 🙂

#2 Jam Off blog — OrangeBlog on 01.06.11 at 10:01 pm

[…] famous on the Jam Off blog – just re-purposed my holiday jam-making post … you’ve read most of it before but a few extra bits so take a […]

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