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Lime, Basil, and Mandarin Salad

Monday, February 23, 2009

Package #1

One thing about receiving packages at home is our mailbox is not big enough to hold them so we have to go back to get them. For someone like me who absolutely loves to receive mail I can hardly take the suspense when there is a package slip and I know I can not get it until the post office opens the next day at 11 a.m.! Well, this is what happened Friday night. It usually says on the slip who the packages are from, but sometimes the sender really doesn't mean much, and it definitely doesn't help when one of the package slips goes missing somewhere between the mailbox and your house. Friday night David informed me that there had been two package slips, but could no longer find the second one. The one I had said Lote Tree which meant about as much to me as the one that was completely missing. There were a couple of things I was hoping for, but it seemed too soon for both of them. Well, apparently it was not too early because as soon as I saw that little red tag on my package I knew that it was the package I was hoping for. Eventually I figured out the second one, but we will save that for tomorrow. 
This package is from my friend Rebecca, I have mentioned her a few times on my blog and she has mentioned me a few times on hers. Through our mutual love of all things in a canning jar we have started up correspondence and agreed to swap a few winter items. 
Well, I must say that Rebecca has spoiled me once again. I don't even know where to start. I was really intrigued by her experience at The River Cottage. I checked out their website and all of their books and was really interested in their preserving handbook. Now, one of the things I love about living in Alaska is that we have a lot of great reference material on preserving the harvest. The problem is that a lot of the books are really overly complex and in the United States we get more wrapped up in sterilizing the jars than we do about the actual recipes. This book has everything in one place and all the recipes are very straightforward and not overly difficult. This isn't just jams and jellies, there are pickles, chutneys, relishes, cordials, liquors, sauces, ketchups, and vinegars. Many of them call for mustard powder so Rebecca included some in the package. Rebecca marked a few of her favorites for me including the candied orange sticks which she has posted about on her blog and also included in my surprise package. I love them and can't wait to try them with Meyer Lemon peel. I also want to make the Lemon Squash which is basically a simple lemon syrup that you can and then add to water (or vodka) later. The thing I love about this book is that it has all the basics, but also has some different ways of using ingredients I am sometimes challenged by like Rhubarb. I am determined to do something with that monstrosity that grows in our garden this year! 
Of course, there was some of that amazing Seville Orange Marmalade which was the whole reason for doing this swap in the first place.  It looks absolutely wonderful, I can't wait to open it up. I'm trying to think of a special occasion, maybe a leap year celebration so we can dig in soon! Tonight, I will be making Indian Food and Rebecca's Spiced Apple Chutney will be the star of the show! I will be posting a recipe I promised Rebecca as well in the next few days. Thanks again Rebecca for all the amazing goodies. 

Sneek Preview of tomorrow's post package #2:


  1. Wow, there's my preserves all the way across the world. It never fails to amaze me when they appear like that on your blog! I really hope that the chutney lives up to its promise. We're on our third jar though as N loves it in everything from sandwiches to mashed potato, so hopefully that bodes well.

    Oooh, marmalade on hot pancakes, I'm so doing that tonight!

  2. p.s. the suspense about that second package is killing me....


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