Can I still say Happy New Year?!

By now you may have noticed that we pretty much took a hard break from social media at the end of the year. We? I mean ME. All these 12 years the social media has been done by me (except two projects).  I love the creation & sharing of beautiful or interesting things but honestly just being present with my family took more of me this season.

In the quiet of the past year Potlicker has shape shifted a few times over and seems to be nestling into its roots. I again find pleasure in canning and otherwise experimenting in the local to me landscape. Landscapes themselves are ever shifting and fluid environment. We cannot help but be impacted by the environment around us. It forces us to adapt.

Over the past two years I outsourced and experimented with co-packers. While not a popular option (it never goes well), I have developed a food allergy that prevents me from even being in the room when my recipe for Pineapple Habanero is made. This jam will never be made by me in person again but instead will be made with the help of copackers, employees, or family. While this detail allows “me” to continue to make everyone’s favorite jam, it is problematic for others. I was recently told I was “too commercial” for a makers market and I guess I will take it as a compliment in this instance because all the recipes and artwork have always been all me. 

These days, to get my jamming done, I make use of licensed commercial kitchens in both Florida and Vermont. Occasionally I do events in either area of the country or where ever else I might want to work-cation. 

You can find my top 6 jams in select stores across the country or you can order online. At this time, I do not plan to expand wholesale flavor offerings but will focus on bringing them back to perfection and creating a new workspace I love. Something that is hard to explain is how jam changes from one kitchen to another. The pot, the stove, the local fruit, all of the minutia creates the end flavor & color of the jam. Somewhat notable is I use a jelly pot to make my jam. This means the pot is taller than it is wide. Tall pots are ideal for jelly because they allow for the rise of the boil, wider pans are generally considered best for jam because they help in evaporation.

As the year progresses, I would like to spend more time with my non-jam recipes. Yes, there will still be a steady stream of jams and canning available for sale. But I am looking forward to refining my favorite condiments (adapted for my pepper allergy), learning new techniques, and adding new bake mixes to the line up. 

Not long ago I was asked by another food producer how I came up with so many ideas to use jams and jellies. I confessed that I has started the business as a food blogger, a recipe creator. Oh so many years ago I was a blogger that loved food photography and was nominated for awards. Years after that I did win awards for my jam and nods for my canning, not for my photography. 

If you have gotten this far I just want to say thank you. If you’ve been here since the beginning of blogging I want to doubly thank you. Over the past 12 years it’s been a wild ride and we have seen incredible success that kept me running full out at over 3,000 jars a week for 6 years. Now we are a little slower, a lot wiser, and more appreciative of our time. 

This being said, I want to share a recipe for with Jam Pan Sauce over Pork Chops. 

It isn’t so much a recipe as a technique. The key part in this recipe is the pan drippings, the fond, that will be scraped up and simmered with the jam. You don’t have to use pork, you could use any protein you want. If you love tofu (I do!) then marinate and press a block; be sure to coat with starch to create the caramelization in the pan.

I like to start with hearty bone in pork chops & a hot skillet. Heat an oven to 350.

In a hot skillet, sear the chops on both sides until golden brown. Remove from the pan and place into an oven safe dish. Continue cooking protein to desired temperature in the oven. Set aside to rest.

Start the sauce by adding 2 Tablespoons of diced onions and 2 mashed cloves of garlic. cook until brown. Stir in 2-3 Tablespoons of mustard and 1/2 cup jam. Cook until bubbly and then add liquid (1/4c broth, whisky, wine). Add more liquid to make more sauce, boil longer to thicken.

When ready to serve, pour jam sauce over rested meat before presentation. This particular blueberry bourbon and pork combo is often served with roasted sweet potatoes & broccoli.


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