Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Labor Day Labors

For Labor Day I decided to prepare a southern treat, muscadine jelly. Muscadine grapes, Vitis rotundifolia, is a wild grape that grows throughout the southeast. It is probably the grape that prompted the Norse to call North America, 'Vineland,' my guess as the grapes are quite prolific in the South.

On the vine.
The grapes have a lovely musky flavor, and quite tough hulls. The Country Store at Callaway Gardens sells wonderful preserves made from the muscadines grown in the gardens. They serve them in season with buttered biscuits for the breakfast menu in season.

Black beauties hanging in the sun.

And in the bucket.

The juice being stirred before adding the sugar.

And the final product. I've picked enough to make six more 12 oz. jars and we have begun sharing them around the neighborhood. It's a wonderful if somewhat laborous tradition of the season.

Hoping you have an exciting week.


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