Food & Drink Magazine

Preserve Us

By Patinoz

One of the casualties of my shift to Australia was my preserving pan. There was always some discussion in the family as to whose preserving pan it actually was. My mother couldn’t find hers, so she assumed I had  “borrowed” it.

I do recall in my single days taking it into work for our newspaper’s annual reporters’ room Christmas party. During December various grateful politicians, councillors and contacts used to drop off cartons of beer and the occasional bottle of spirits and these were stashed in the chief reporter’s office for the big bash.

Being a responsible young woman, it was my job to make a batch of fruit punch for the non-drinkers. And what better vessel to use that Mum’s preserving pan with its mega-capacity.

I used to whip up a fairly palatable concoction of cold tea, fruit juice, lemonade and gingerale, float in some strawberries, lemon slices, mint and ice and voila! – a very harmless beverage to dispense on a warm day.

This particular afternoon the desk has been pushed back, the beer was flowing, the pies and sausage rolls were vanishing in a crumble of pastry laced with tomato sauce, the music was blaring and spirits were generally high. I think that was the party where a couple of the lads decided to do a streak through the centre of festivities and someone – I’m sure it couldn’t possibly have been me – locked the office where their clothes had been abandoned.

The clock ticked on, the beer was cut, and we refreshed ourselves with the remaining punch. It went down easily. Like nectar.

preserving pan

A brisk clean and it will be all set for summer preserving

It was time to clean up. The bottles were consigned to a bin, paper plates and cups were gathered up and I started sweeping the floor while the chaps began to put the desks back into place – no computer cords to worry about in those days of Imperial 66 typewriters.

I suddenly felt extremely weary, almost tired and emotional. The broom was getting harder to push and the room was starting to feel like a merry-go-round. I couldn’t understand it as I had stuck largely to my innocuous punch.

Others around me started wilting like lettuce leaves on a compost heap. Eventually the nasty truth struck us – someone had spiked the punch.

An instant witch-hunt soon identified the culprit. It was the police roundsman who should have known better. Seems he had emptied at least one whole bottle of vodka into the residual punch an hour or so earlier. He stopped grinning when we left him to wash the floors and finish the cleaning up.

When I departed New Zealand I gave “my” preserving pan to my mother. I missed it sorely but it was too bulky to bring back in my hand-luggage after she died. In the meantime I have been using a Le Creuset casserole or my pasta pot – neither perfect for the job as they don’t allow the preserves the same surface area for rapid boiling when it’s called for.

I was surprised it was so hard to track down a real preserving pan in Australia – there wasn’t even one on eBay. However, on a recent wander round my local shops, I called in on an antiques place to see if there were any interesting old bits of kitchen equipment and couldn’t believe my luck when I spied a 12 quart preserving pan, very similar to my old one, sitting near the front counter. I immediately made it mine.

It’s waiting for a good polish and it will soon be pressed into service as I make my seasonal preserves and sauces. Stay tuned…

You Might Also Like :

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog

These articles might interest you :

  • Chocolate and Banana Swirled Pancakes

    Chocolate Banana Swirled Pancakes

    It’s Pancake Day again. Or Shrove Tuesday to give it its proper name.It’s quite late this year, I usually always think of Pancake Day as being around the time o... Read more

    By  Cakeyboi
  • Fruited Scones

    Fruited Scones

    One of my favorite experiences over here is the Cream Tea, and you will find them all over the country. Hot pots of tea (and they can be herbal teas if you... Read more

    By  Mariealicerayner
  • 35 Low-Carb Keto Side Dishes

    Low-Carb Keto Side Dishes

    Low-carb side dishes can be a challenge for beginners. Maybe because we are all so used to carb-fest sides like potatoes, rice and noodles. Vegetables to the... Read more

    By  Carbophobic
  • Braided Bread Rings Recipe

    Braided Bread Rings Recipe

    These rolls are made with sweet bread dough, shape into 2 long ropes of 12 in and braided,After browsing You Tube, I came across a bunch of gorgeous rolls with... Read more

    By  Treatntrick
  • Dosa Attack – A Honest Review

    Dosa Attack Honest Review

    Dosa Attack- Kharghar, which is a part of the Dosa attack chain has a lot of variety of Dosa to show on the Menu. Almost all who have visited the Dosa Attack... Read more

    By  Ukfashionablefoodz
  • Today's Review: KFC Dirty Louisiana Burger

    Today's Review: Dirty Louisiana Burger

    I look forward to the KFC promo burgers, and while the Christmas offering wasn't their best, it was a pretty bold idea. I would expect them to turn to... Read more

    By  Areviewaday
  • Today's Review: Kit Kat Peanut Butter Bites

    Today's Review: Peanut Butter Bites

    Oh my, oh my. I try not to make assumptions, but I had an idea that these would be great as soon as I saw them. The peanut butter Kit Kat Chunky came out so lon... Read more

    By  Areviewaday