18-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today:
Thursday, September 11, 1913: Nothing much.
Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:
Grandma, you must have done something. Were you too tired to write much because you spent the day in the kitchen helping your mother with the canning?
I made Crab Apple Jelly last week-end. It’s the season for crab apples—maybe you also made some a hundred years ago.
Crab Apple Jelly
5 pounds (approximately 10 cups) crab apples
8 cups water
Remove stem and blossom ends from washed crab apples, cut in halves and place in large pan. Add water and cook until fruit is very soft, about 10 minutes.
Strain the mixture through a jelly bag. Do not squeeze or force just through bag.
Measure juice. There should be approximately 7 cups. Pour into a large pan. Stir in 3/4 cups of sugar for each cup of juice. Bring to a boil quickly and cook rapidly until the jellying point* is reached.
Skim off foam and pour into hot one-half pint jars to within 1/4 inch of the top. Wipe jar rim and adjust lids. Process in boiling water bath for 5 minutes.
Makes about 5 – 6 half pints.
*The Portland Preserve website has a nice description of how to tell when the jellying point has been reached.