It’s done! It’s done! We finished cleaning out the front iris bed on Tuesday and will finish snipping all those irises today. There’s so many. Now we’ll rake, spray, till, spray, etc until the web of grass underground is gone. You dig and it’s like a subway six inches under-so many grass rhizomes snaking around. Ugh. Here’s a picture of an iris with the flower blooming right next to the bulb-weird. The other picture is the iris bed right before we finished it on Tuesday. We only had a 1/3 left, but what a long third it was…it took three hours but we did it.
Now on to the boo-boo. I was making rhubarb jelly and since I couldn’t find a recipe, decided to use trial and error in making one. I don’t recommend this since jam is usually an exact science, but hey, all these new recipes have to come from someone’s trial and error, so why not mine? I used frozen rhubarb which has its own disadvantages as far as measuring and water; most recipes tell you to measure it frozen, then drain it and cook. I did that and still think it was too watery so I added a box of strawberry jello to thicken it as well as the pectin. I canned it and let it sit for six hours, then decided it wasn’t thickening up as well as I liked. Maybe I could have given it more time to set (they recommend two weeks) but I think it would still have been too runny. I undid all the lids and put it back in the cooker and let it cook for four hours. During this time the color darkened but since it was thickening, that didn’t bother me. I put the lids back on and reprocessed them. When I tried one, it didn’t taste like jelly anymore nor did it look like it. It was dark and had a caramel look/feel to it. It tasted and looked like…molasses or dark corn syrup! This probably happened because a chemical change happened when the pectin and gelatin were boiled which why the box of pectin says to boil for exactly one minute and then remove…I’m guessing two hours is stretching it a bit much. I made molasses cookies with it and they were amazing. I buy a lot of molasses to make cookies throughout the year, so making my own is going to save me in the long run. I could have thrown it all out, but instead created something new. Life is like that; you go in thinking you want to accomplish one thing and another happens instead. You aren’t sure it will work until suddenly, it does. And life is good. I sent a ton (11 dozen) of these cookies to my oldest son in the military and I know his buddies and he will love them. So here is a look at them (the cookies, that is):