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After making the fleur de sel caramels last week, I have been eager to try another candy. I wanted to start with something simple, so I found a (very) simple recipe for glacĂ© fruit (also called crystallized fruit or candied fruit). These are surprisingly wonderful. Each piece is sweet and bright, with a burst of lovely tangerine flavor when you bite into them. I plan to candy lots of other fruits – I’m especially looking forward to cherries and pineapple.

Candied Tangerine Slices

Combine 1/2 c. sugar and 1-1/2 c. water in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. While you are waiting for the boil, slice 4 or 5 small tangerines in half and then into 1/4″ slices. I placed my tangerines in the refrigerator in the morning so they would be more firm for slicing, it helps the slices keep their shape.

Reduce heat to medium-low and drop fruit slices into the sugar syrup. Allow to simmer lightly for 40-50 minutes, flipping once or twice, until the slices are translucent but still hold their shape.

Remove fruit with a slotted spoon onto a drying rack with a baking sheet underneath (to catch sugary drips) and allow to cool and set overnight.

Dredge in sugar, and enjoy!

These will keep for a couple of weeks if sealed tightly.

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Letterpress note cards, printed as a gift for a dear friend using vintage blocks and type.

I made these salty-sweet bites of wonderful as holiday gifts.
These were so fun to make. You guys, I think I’m getting into candy.

Cranberry Citrus Jam

Makes 2 and a half pints

All fruit juice in this recipe should be squeezed fresh. I used about 3 tangerines, one large orange, and one lemon.

12 oz. fresh cranberries
1/2 c. tangerine juice
1/4 c. orange juice
1/4 c. lemon juice
1-3/4 c. sugar or 2 c. honey
1-1/2 c. water
1/2 box Pomona Pectin *

Add water and cranberries to a large sauce pot and bring to a boil. Simmer over low-medium heat for about 10 minutes.

Drain berries and preserve water. Process cranberries in blender or food processor. Add the cranberry water to the cranberry pulp until you have 4 cups, and put back in the sauce pot.

Add freshly-squeezed juices to the cranberry pulp.

Combine sugar and pectin. Add mixture to cranberry pulp and juice. Boil for 15-20 minutes, skimming foam from the top.

Check set of the jam by dropping a small teaspoon of hot liquid on a frozen plate. It it sets, it’s done! Otherwise, keep boiling and re-check every couple minutes.

Ladle into clean jars, secure tops, and process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes.

* Note:

You can make this recipe without the pectin to make a delicious syrup. Combined with a little maple syrup and pancakes, it’s potentially the best breakfast ever.

My gift to the bride, a set of hand printed letterpress stationery cards with her new married name. I’m so happy with how they turned out – classic, natural, and simply beautiful, just like the bride herself.

E&B were married on Saturday at the Botanical Gardens in Buffalo. It was positively gorgeous. And what a beautiful bride! I’m so happy I could be a part of their day.

To Erin & Ben I wish all love, all happiness, all the best.

I’m not generally a fan of Fendi, but these looks I can get behind.

Sunday we had a reservation to go to the Barnes Foundation outside of Philadelphia. We rented a car, woke up at 4 am, and hit the road. We had packed a lunch of gluten-free pasta salad with peppers, scallions, and parmesan and a couple of pesto, mayonnaise, and veggie sandwiches. We listened to our favorite albums and enjoyed being on the road, talking about towns we passed, observing changes of scenery.

About 4 hours into our trip, after we had crossed the Pennsylvania border, something seemed wrong. I assumed we had passed our exit or missed a turn, but upon further investigation it looked as if we had taken the wrong end of a fork about 45 minutes back. We were now faced with being very late for our reservation, spending more money on gas than anticipated, and pushing our arrival back home to Buffalo back by a couple of hours that night.

At this point, we had just passed through my hometown. I love my hometown. As we passed through, I talked about all the things I would want to do if we stopped there and made plans for the next trip home.

So now we are stopped at a gas station, faced with a decision. Continue to the Barnes Foundation and see the collection in its original location before it is moved to center city Philly, or choose to change the plan.

We changed the plan.

Instead of going the museum, we went back to Vestal. We went to the nature preserve and took the most invigorating and peaceful hike through the woods to the pond. It was wet, cold, windy, and muddy. It was perfect.

Snowflakes blew around in the sun like tiny pieces of glass, reflecting the light and putting us inside a real-life nature snow globe. The colors everywhere were lovely – warm browns, evergreen green, bright white snow, and the black, grey, and rusty brown of the black-capped chickadees chirping and flitting around the trees.

After the walk, we warmed up with some delicious Mexican food and got on the road back to Buffalo. We took the leisurely road home, passing through Ithaca and stopping at the original gimme! coffee for a fresh-brewed treat (their Panama Hartmann Honey is my all-time favorite) to get us through the rest of the ride. We drove along Seneca Lake and through Geneva, my old college town, and west from there.

We may have spent most of our trip in the car, but I think we made the right choice.

On Friday night Erin came over for an evening of holiday decorating. We made simple holiday wreaths with natural materials including grapevines, mountain roses, and fresh rosemary. Mine is now hanging on the mantle, adding just a little extra holiday warmth.