I had this whole list of things to do in October, and I got none of them done.
Nada. Zip. Zilch.
That's just the way it is sometimes, and it is one of those times.
I am slowly working my way through the very alluring salt sugar smoke by Diana Henry. The British cover is here, and the American here - I like the plump and mouth-wateringly tart cherries burst open and strewn across the page of the rumtopf or bachelor's jam recipe featured on the American version best.
I got a lovely email from Ms. Henry, who aptly surmised that I like a little tipple now and again, and directed me to head straight to the booze section of her book.
She was not mistaken.
I have apricots in muscat and pear ratafia lined up for some much anticipated kitchen dabbling this weekend.
I made up a batch of chutney before I headed out to New Jersey in a race with Sandy to see who would arrive first. Hugh's affectionately named glutney recipe is a lifesaver when the garden is heaving with veg, or in this case, lots of tomatoes rescued before the first killing frost sitting on the counter threatening to turn to slime before they get even remotely ripe. Add in one butternut squash, bits and bobs of dried fruits (sultanas a.k.a. golden raisins, regular old raisins, dried currants), some cider vinegar and a gigantic pot to hold it all, and 4 hours of slow simmering later I had 5 pints of glorious tart, sharp chutney. I am keenly observing the jars as they sit and mellow on the shelf.
I am making the last tweaks on gluten-free chocolate cupcakes and almond flour carrot muffins, which will be ready to share soon. Until then, the chutney in action.