What do you do when a friend texts you and says she has a bunch of Concord grapes she needs to get rid of from her yard, and wants to know if you want them for your chickens? You say YES!
Last Sunday, I went to my friend’s house to pick up the grapes. When I arrived, I was shocked at how full her vines were. We grabbed bags and started picking. 4 full grocery bags later, I knew I needed to come up with some uses for these juicy beauties in addition to treating the feathered ladies.
Out of curiosity, I weighed my bounty when I got home: 14 lbs!!!!! Time for juice and jelly! After setting aside 4 lbs for the chickens, removing the stems and leaves from the rest of grapes, and giving them a good wash, I set apart the grapes for juice and jelly, and got to work mashing and simmering.
Here are the recipes I used:
Grape Jelly: http://www.pickyourown.org/grapejelly.htm *Note: I also used the no sugar pectin and the lesser amount of sugar.
Grape Juice: http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/making_grape_juice/
I admit that I got a little impatient with the juice straining through the cheese cloth, so I busted out my juicer. This resulted in A walking into the kitchen as I’m trying to hold an unbalanced juicer on the counter as grape seeds were shooting out of the port on the lid. It was a pretty hilarious reminder to be patient and trust in the process!
Remember, even if you don’t grow something yourself, there are still lots of ways to make your own delicious eats from the gardens of family and friends, or from your local farmers markets.
P.S. The chickens were so thrilled with their grapes!