Monday, April 6, 2009

people used to say he was a mean ugly feller and called him a dirty skunk and an ornery pig stealer

Today I've been retrofitting the chicken run with chicken wire on the dirt floor. We only have three chickens left (the darkest-colored ones--they have disappeared in order of lightest to darkest plumage--theory: this is because the lighter ones are easier to see, and therefore catch), and I don't want to lose the last three and go a whole summer with no fresh eggs until the new babies start laying. Which they probably won't even do until next spring, because they've been pushed back so far.

I've also called every feed store along the Wasatch Front to discover that they are all out of chicks. There are a few that will be getting more, and one guy in Lehi who has a bunch, but he's the only one. Crazy! So I'll head down there this week and buy some, since the skunk has depleted our reserves. Stupid skunk. I'm glad he's dead. I spit on his grave.

I also bought some kooky "modified corn starch," which normally would make me say BOO! But this is supposed to make it so I can add whatever amount of sweetener I want to my jam, so it will taste like strawberries instead of sugar. I'm going to just try a tiny batch and see what I think, if it crystallizes in the freezer or anything. I'm guessing prevention of crystallization is what the corn syrup is for. So, for those of you who have the know-how, would either honey or agave nectar be an option here?


tipsybaker said...

I made strawberry jam yesterday. If your cornstarch experiment works, I will be interested because otherwise I am done with strawberry jam. All that work and it just tastes like Smuckers. It's one of the rare homemade things that tastes completely sugary and artificial no matter what I do.
I have not looked into chicks, but I suspect the situation is similar out here.

highdeekay said...

Oooh, let me know. I said to Phil just yesterday, "Phil, my goal this summer is to find a way to make freezer jam without all that sugar!" (I have always been a person who sets my goals high! high, I tell ya!)

Matt and Emily said...

Did you get cleargel of suregel? I use cleargel in my freezer jam recipe that I really, really love. It still has sugar & corn syrup in it but more than twice as many berries as sugar- which compared to many recipes is a good ratio. It tastes like fruit. Anyways, if your substituting with different sugars doesn't work out, let me know and you can try this recipe if you want- it really is good stuff.