Canning with Ross by Julia Kudla

Oct 07


‘Hey, Kid, do you have some time to can peaches next week?’ Such an innocent sounding request, don’t you think? I’ve known Ross for going on 25 years, and I still said yes! This is what showed up at my house…

That looks like about 25 pounds of peaches, doesn’t it? It was. Now, I can a LOT. But I usually can small quantities. Six or eight jars at a time and if I’m in the kitchen for more than two hours, I’m no longer a happy girl having fun. I want it to be over! Calm down, I thought, just breathe and assess the situation. Put jars in the dishwasher, counted my lids, checked in the cupboard to see how much sugar I had and called Ross to let him know what else we needed.

Our canning day came and we set up our mise en place. It looked liked this…Those bowls might not look very big, but remember, I’m a small time canner. There were still almost 25 pounds of peaches to peal and chop. Thank God Ross is a true master with the knife. I never could have gotten all that prepped as fast as he did! We tossed half of everything in my canning pot and got cooking. Well, I got cooking. This is what Ross did…Kept my dog, Abby, out from under foot and…Chatted on the phone! Lucky for him that wasn’t all he did. We’re both Geminis and we rambled on like the girls (who I think you’ve all met). I’ve never known anyone who was so capable at keeping up his end of the conversation. Which pretty much means he never stops talking. Having Ross there when it was time to start spooning all that chutney into jars, though, was the saving grace. He was a true professional when it came to listening to the expert and being there to assist. Thanks, Buddy! Note: The ‘girls’ are the six hens of The Advisory Committee !)

Here’s what we ended up with…And, even though I’ve never been much of a chutney fan, I love this chutney! Those of you who are on Santa’s list to receive it for the holidays, you’re in for a treat!

The best part for me was the leftover syrup from the Spiced Whole Peaches (yup! not just chutney for us!). We named it Ginny Ginny Ginny Syrup. And for the life of me, I can’t remember the reference…Ross? I’m looking forward to taking it to our neighbors next time my husband go over for dinner to try mixing it up with all kinds of booze! I’ll serve it with soda water for their daughter, Gigi. Maybe gin for us adults! 

Did I mention this is my first blog post ever? And I’m short on time? And there’ve been a few glasses wine involved? And that Ross is one of my very best friends and I’d do just about anything for him? And I get to cook in the kitchen with him and boss him around! Ha!

ROSS’ EDITORIAl: This woman is too kind ! She is a hard worker , a trooper , a wonderful inventive cook , and often  up for my crazy ideas . I’m so very lucky to know her , her hubby Matt and of course…Abby.

CHUTNEY RECIPE:  Not printed here , but send an email request and we’ll get it to you .


  1. Ginny,Ginny,Ginny ! Remember ? That is a reference to Little Richard’s song- which I think is really Jennie , Jennie,….. We said it would go well with Gin for a neat cocktail like all the mixologists concoct these days . RP

  2. As Maggie would say, sounds like “latsa fun!”

  3. …and we all know , Maggie knows best !”

  4. Chantal /

    Oh boy, can I be on Santa’s list. I’ve been good all this year. Promise.

    • Now we all know it’s over 2 months until then…but I’m sure Santa has a “big check ” in the GOOD COLUMN beside Chantal’s name.

Leave a Reply