Saturday, September 16, 2006

Juice and Raisin Blog

Since this is our opening post we will give you a few details about Juice and Raisin. We have been married for just over seven wonderful years. We bought our first house a year ago. It needs a lot of work but the labor it requires is much more rewarding than renting. It is just a little modular home with a carport; a struggling front yard that includes some ornamental trees and scattered tufts of grass; a little shed for storage and tools. There were some juniper bushes around the house but we have torn them all out; some with pick and shovel, some with our draft horse, Dodge Caravan.

We have three junior juicerettes and one little raisin. Hopefully more raisins will balance the estrogen/testosterone inequality we are experiencing.

One of the features of our new property is a small Concord grape vine at the back of the house. Last fall I showed my little juicerettes how to find the ripe grapes. Very shortly afterward I began to notice squished grapes on the sidewalk up to our front door. Ahh, the joys of parenthood.

Concord grapes are for juice and jelly, wine for those who consume alcohol (not in my family). Growing up I remember eating lots of Concord grapes at my parents house, right off the vine. Sometimes we would even have homemade grape juice.

Last week I got the urge to do something productive with our current crop of grapes. With a half gallon of grapes picked we washed, mashed, and cooked the grapes. After straining through cheesecloth overnight, we had a grand total of three cups of juice ready for us in the morning. What a treat! Better than anything storebought, we made it ourselves and we can do it again next year. I have to get the vine trained to produce more since it hasn't been tended.