After working my pastry shift at the Whale Wins I took the afternoon off from all things business related, biked home, took a long nap, ate potato chips and a piece of apricot cake While doing dishes. Amy graciously cooked morning and nighttime meals the last several days as I ran around town collecting items for jam-making and getting acquainted with my kitchen in SODO and its very small reach-in cooler. Tonight it's my turn. Stuffed peppers?
Last night I vowed to juice a case of lemons while I prepped and cooked several batches of Apricot Butter (my first in the commercial kitchen that homes V Smiley Preserves). I only got halfway through the lemon case before the final jam jars came out of the oven and it was time to clean up. I'd already filled my section of the cooler with boxes of apricots so I brought the half case of lemons home with me. Maybe lemonade later.
This is a time of serious logistical lessons. I don't own a car and for storage reasons must buy fruit in very small quantities. I am still establishing relationships with farmers and suppliers. Sometimes honey deliveries come 3 days later than planned and when the honey does not come the ordered fruit must be sent back. Sometimes, even when I remember everything on my list of items to bring to the kitchen from home, I forget my kitchen keys.
I laugh about these moments with Amy when I get home. I am lucky to get a chance at pursuing my little dream of a micro jam company. And I look forward to getting the routines down. Fruit comes in and jars of jam go out.
August is about making as much jam as possible, jam for wholesaling, jam for the subscriptions that start in September. Right now I am working on building a stock of Apricot Butter before the apricots are all gone. After that, in about a week, I start on Blackberry Plum Jam and fingers crossed, Strawberry Pluot. I played phone tag with Nate Youngquist from Youngquist Farms for a while there, but as of Tuesday, I have a source for the 150 pounds of blackberries I need. Hooray!