I am not a spontaneous person. I like plans. I like to discuss the plans in great detail. I like to stick to those plans. I like to ponder (worry) on the "what if's" and turn the well laid plan into a stress fest. I can't change. It is "my sign"!
Five years ago next month, I received a call from a new acquaintance, urging me to try something that had never entered my mind. To fly. To step out of my cocoon. WOW. This hasn't been easy and then again, it has been a piece of cake. I have pushed, planned, laughed, cried, screamed, laughed, driven miles and miles, carried cases and tables, laughed, lost sleep, passed out, wondered and yes, again, laughed. I have met so many wonderful friends in this journey. I am truly blessed. I would not be here without the support of my family and all of you.
Joyful Jars...jams and jellies. Create and provide a great tasting product with reduced amounts of sugar in each recipe and of course have it be the same quality as if I were making it for my family. Yes! Great work. And that was it. Jams and Jellies. Nothing else. Package those babies up and sell them. THAT WAS MY PLAN.
But after four years, creativity got a bit stale. Same recipes over and over. ugh.... Hmmm..what to do, what to do? Last spring came the first "plot twist". ... PIES! I had made pie filling for several years and used it for cobblers here at home. If i made a pie, i tossed the box of refrigerated pie crusts in my cart at the grocery store. I had only made a handful of "real" pie crusts in all my life. BUT I knew if i was going to offer pies, they were going to be all scratch made! So began the process of learning how to make a great pie crust. After a few dozen pies, I got the hang of it and began to love it. So baking pies and tossing in a few scratch made cakes, put a bounce in my step once again.
BAM "plot twist" number TWO! (lol). New friends put a bug in my ear about Artisan Breads. (What? Oh no. I can't do that too. ) Well after some research..yes I can! OH HOW I AM ENJOYING THIS TOO! I am really in love with the flatbreads! YUMM and deciding which toppings to put on them. I am still in the early stages of the breads but they have been well received both here at home and the farmers market.
Joyful Jars? Yes, but now it includes pies, bundt cakes, cobblers, take alongs, pie poppers, focaccia bread, naan bread and other artisan breads!
You can catch me at the following farmer's markets: River City Farmer's Market, Saturday's from 8 to noon, Marietta. Canal Market District, Tuesday's 4-7 May thru September, Newark. Joyful Jars~~All You Need is a Spoon and now Grab a Fork too!! :)
Ok, we ALL have that one friend. You know the type. Kinda kooky, loveable and there when you need them. My friend's name is Julie. She gives over 100% to everything she does. She is a "giver" to everyone around her. If you happen to say in passing "Oh, I'd like to have an old wooden stool"...you can bet she tucks that away in her mind and one day she will run across one and it will show up on your doorstep! You will never repay her for any kindness she gives, no matter how hard you try. She does all this WITHOUT any thoughts of repayment. It is simply how Julie is.
Julie's passion is wood crafts, sewing, re-purposing etc., Custom Wood and Stitches (by Julie) on facebook. BUT she has a HUGE mulberry tree in her backyard. She wasn't about to let the birds devour them and delight in pooping on her vehicle...not Julie. My friend propped herself on the back of her truck and held onto a tree limb and picked them for me. Several days of picking berries after coming home from work. Silly girl says it is "relaxing". "Entertainment for the evening" is what the neighbors called it!
Anyway, her kind gesture resulted in several "sandwich size" bags of berries that filled my steam/juicer to the brim! From that ORGANIC FOSTER AVE mulberry juice, I made several jars of jelly. When I saw these adorable squatty jars from Kerr, I knew I had the perfect match for the special edition jelly. It makes me smile to see these jars.
Real friends are few and far between. If you are lucky enough for God to place one in your path, acknowledge it. Thank you for all you do Julie! Your friendship means so much. With a quick call about jars on sale or question about a travel destinations, I am always happy to see your name show up on my phone. I hope you know what a treasured friend you are to me. May God bless your path Julie. You have blessed so many by being on ours.
1 cup of butter
1 1/2 cups of sugar
1 1/2 cups of milk
4 t baking powder
2 cups of flour
**4-6 cups of fruit with juice of the fruit (orginial version)
^^One and a half quarts of home made pie filling, any flavor.
Melt butter in 9 x 13 pan. Mix next 4 ingredients until a smooth batter. Pour butter into batter and stir until well blended. Pour into pan.
**Pour berries over batter.
^^Drop pie filling by spoonful onto batter. I then swirled to get to the edges.
Bake 1 hour.
**I have made this recipe using fresh blackberries. I washed them well and place in a bowl. Some of the natural juices began to release. That is what the recipe means by “fruit with the juice of the fruit”.
^^I used several of my fillings for this. It is important to swirl the filling to incorporate well with the batter. So every inch of the pan has some filling! YUM YUM
I can hear you now...RED ONION MARMALADE? I know right.?....red onions, brown sugar and vinegar in a marmalade? YES..it is amazing!!! I love using it as a topper to chicken, pork and steak. The sweetness of the brown sugar seems to caramelize the grilled meat and becomes a sticky glaze that makes you want more.
Below is a recipe I came up for a demonstration at Longaberger Homestead kitchen a few weeks ago. It can easily be used as appetizer while watching movies, sports or chatting with the friends.
Two tubes of Crescent Dough in Sheets
One 8oz container of Whipped Cream Cheese
One 8oz jar of Red Onion Marmalade from Joyful Jars
Two or Three Chicken Breasts, fully cooked and shredded
Place chicken and half the jar of Red Onion Marmalade in a skillet. Combine and cook until warm. If you feel you need more marmalade, add more! It is a judgement call. You want the chicken to be "glazed" entirely with the product.
Place one of the crescent dough sheets on a cookie sheet. Spread the whipped cream cheese over, all the way to the edge. Spoon the chicken over the cream cheese. Top with the other crescent sheet. Crimp edges with a fork as you would a pie crust. Poke a few holes in the top crust. Bake as directed on your crescent container.
Slice into individual squares and enjoy.
After an OVERWHELMING response to the taste and for the recipe, at the Longaberger Homestead this weekend, I promised to post the recipe and get some recipe cards over there for the visitors. These are DELICIOUS...so moist and flavorful! You will love them!
3 2/3 cups flour
1 t baking powder
1 t salt
1 c butter, at room temp
2 1/4 c sugar
5 eggs, at room temp
1 t vanilla extract
1 quart of Joyful Jars filling, any flavor
8 oz. cream cheese, at room temp
1 c powdered sugar
1/2 t almond extract
2-3 T milk
Combine flour, baking powder & salt; set aside.
Cream butter and 2 c sugar for two minutes with an electric mixer. (I use my kitchen aid.) Add 4 eggs & vanilla extract. Mix until combined. Gradually add flour mixture & mix until all ingredients are incorporated to form a dough.
Grease a 15x10x1 pan (jelly roll pan); then press half the dough into the bottom of the pan. (I use my spatula to make an even amount throughout the pan.)
Combine cream cheese, remaining egg and 1/4 c sugar and beat with electric mixer until smooth. Spread cream cheese mixture over dough. Spread the filling over cream cheese mixture.
Top filling with remaining dough by evenly dolloping on small spoonfuls until all dough is used. Bake at 350* for approximately 40 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool completely.
Combine powdered sugar, almond extract and milk to make a glaze. Drizzle over the bars and then cut into squares.
Growing up on a dairy farm, I knew early on the meaning of "homecooked with love". I create delicious treats for all to enjoy. I began with jams and jellies. Moved into pies and desserts and now I am playing with some flatbreads and etc. I love to keep the creativity flowing. All products are made with quality ingredients just as if I was making them for my own family. . As my tag line says, "All You Need is a Spoon" and now "Grab a Fork too!" ! Enjoy!