Thursday, June 30, 2011

Spotlight on Astoria Artisans - AJ's Jam!

Something new I'd like to start doing on this blog is pay special homage to the Astoria Artisans who have a passion for food.  There are many fanatical food enthusiasts in our nabe, as we know, and they range from your urban farmer (more on that soon), your specialty desserts baker, to the handy diyer, who I'll talk about now.  AJ Simone is his name, and preserving, building and jarring is the name of his game.

Heading up a blog with a humorously provocative name, Handjobs for the Home, you'll find yourself drawn to AJ's creations, which include anything and everything from DIY microwave popcorn to bbq rubs, classic strawberry jam, red onion relish and much more.  I absolutely love his user friendly tips and the charming way he presents all his goodies - very Martha meets Colin Cowie!

I'm proud to say that I know this talented man personally, as we recently forged a friendship at the last Queens Swap I worked on with Meg and Charlene.  AJ totally brought it with his impressive canned goods such as the black onion relish, which I've used on practically anything that's edible and has a flat surface.  I recently saw him at Tuesday's launch party and he generously graced me with another one of his creations, Strawberry Lemon Preserves.

Strawberry Lemon Preserves - As you can see from the above pictures, this delectable spread was packaged in AJ's signature charming-as-can-be style.  I couldn't wait to dig in, tempted to eat them with a spoon right out of the jar, but I waited.  Only a little bit.

Using the spread on a dark, fluffly whole wheat bagel, it totally came to life.  The tart flavor of the strawberry and the zingy essence of the lemon raised these preserves to another level.  They tasted uncannily (pun intended) fresh and summery.  Each bite was a pleasure, as the chunky strawberries tingled your tastebuds in all the right places.  A pretty awesome handjob (or rather tastejob) indeed!

You can learn how to make this fantastic delicacy, as AJ uncovers his recipe for Strawberry Lemon Preserves.

1 comment:

  1. the new website looks great! and thanks for suggesting AJ's blog - I'm definitely going to add it to my reader :)



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