The harvest has been over for several weeks, but today I enjoyed the sweetness of the last bundle of grapes that had been hiding in the fridge. I was reminded of the season of new growth through to harvest which is only 4 short months. The pink blossoms that erupt in spring are a foretaste of the rich purple fruit in the fall.
There is so much spiritual imagery in a vineyard, or in our yard just an arbor. In John 15 Jesus talked about the relationship we have in him as relating to grape vines.
"I am the Vine, you are the branches. When you're joined with me and I with you, the relation intimate and organic, the harvest is sure to be abundant. Separated, you can't produce a thing. When you make yourself at home with me and my words are at home in you, you can be sure that whatever you ask will be listened to and acted upon. This is how my Father shows who He is - when you produce grapes, when you mature as my disciples."
For years we have made grape juice, but this fall our crop was smaller so I got innovative and created a grape/plum sauce that is delicious with pork, chicken, and also stirred into plain yogurt. E.D. Smith only gets credit for the nice tall bottles that I purchase with no sugar syrup.
ASIAN SPICED GRAPE AND PLUM SAUCE
4 cups blue juice grapes
4 cups chopped prune plums
4 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cups sugar
12 tsp cornstarch
1 TBSP lemon juice
4 tsp Chinese Five Spice
Simmer fruit in water till tender.
Put the fruit through a food mill.
Return pulp and juice to a large saucepan.
Mix sugar, cornstarch and spice and
add with lemon juice to fruit,
Bring to boil and simmer 10 minutes.
Pour sauce into hot, sterile jars.
Seal with lids that have been boiled for 5 minutes
Place in water bath and bring to a boil.
Can for 15 minutes.
Remove from canner and cool.
Voila! A rich sauce to share with others, just like the spiritual lesson that the fruit of my life shared with those in my sphere of influence glorifies my heavenly Father.