I got a bit carried away over the Christmas period and bought a lot of fruit. We didn't really have enough people here to eat it all so I decided that I either preserve it some how or wait until it goes off and compost it! I was VERY fortunate to get a Thermomix from my fantastic family (it will be my Christmas and birthday present for the next 5 years!!!) Anyway, so what have I done.......
Pineapples - we've been buying some lovely little rough leaf pines for a while now - grown locally at Yeppoon and to me, they are the best pineapples you can get. They are sweet and juicy and I've never seen them in the shop for as long as they have been this year (well last year really!). I had about 8 that I didn't think would last much longer, so I got the Fowlers Vacolla gear out. I made a sugar syrup and managed to fill 4 jars with chopped pinapple and because I had enough syrup and jars, I did one with sliced mango. I didn't cook the fruit at all, just sliced it and put it into the jars and then poured the hot syrup over. Into the pot and boiled for about 20 minutes. The jars all appear to have sealed well and they look really pretty!
I had some strawberries in the freezer - these were homegrown and just the odd shaped ones that no one wanted to eat. I only had 250g so had put off doing anything with them - I had planned on making jam, but it was a bit of a pain for such a small amount. Not when you have a thermomix though! I just put in the fruit and sugar, set the temperature, time and speed and went and did other things while it cooked. I only got about 1/2 a jar, but it was easy and so yummy - especially on fresh homemade bread with my own fresh raw cream!!!
Then because I had left over plums and cherries that were getting passed their useby, it was straight into the thermomix - this time I got two jars of jam - it's also good with bread and cream!
Bananas - we had another bunch recently and in this heat they all seemed to ripen at once, so they too have gone into the freezer - just freeze as they are, skin on. For smoothies or banana cake, just need to defrost enough so that they can be peeled easily.