Monday, January 23, 2012

The Gift of Jam

Week Two at the Vancouver Farmers Market was lovely. How satisfying to witness people's smile after sampling your jam. We ran out of sampling spoons so quickly. Luckily, other vendors were kind enough to (save our asses) give us some of their own spoons and everyone who wanted to try some jam was able to do so.

A man came to our stall and said he was happy to see us at the market because he has already finished the jar he bought last week and was desperate for more quince jelly. We love that man, wherever he is. And, if you can believe it, another gentleman with a similar story showed up not too long after, in the hopes that we still had some of our pear and vanilla jam for him. Friends, we have return customers !! And we don't mean our mothers, best friends and husbands either. How rewarding the jam making business. It's finally working; our evil plan is to make you all addicted to Sticky Spoon, moohahahahaha!

When one is slightly obsessed with making jam, it is easy to find oneself with more jars than one can possibly eat. Over the past few years, we have given away as much jam as we have consumed ourselves and it is safe to say that, based on our friends' and families' reactions, a jar of jam makes a great gift. Now, we get to watch other people buy Sticky Spoon jam and give it to their loved ones. The fact that we sold more than half of our inventory before Christmas and that so many of those little jars went into baskets and stockings for friends makes us really happy. We are even more honored that the tradition continues in the new year. Many of you have come to our market stall and purchased something for a friend who loves peach jam, a father who is particularly fond of anything tomato, or as a hostess gift for a dinner party. Because we love to see you sharing the jam love, we work on the details that make each jar extra special to give away.

Now included with every jar of Sticky Spoon jam is a tag with suggestions pairings. These are just a few ideas of what to do with each flavour if, like us, you think that jam can be delicious with so much more than just toast. At home, we regularly serve jam with eggs, prawns, chicken wings, pork loins, duck breast and, if you have read any of our blog posts, you know that we are very fond of adding a spoonful to our cocktails.

We have also taken advantage of our men's carpentry skills and tools and, with the purchase of three jars, you may now take your jam home in a lovely wooden gift box. We think they are so cute, thanks Andrew!

In the past few months, we have had some interest in Sticky Spoon gift baskets for corporate and family events and we will soon be producing several dozens of jars for a friend who plans on handing out jam to each of her guests as a wedding favour this Summer. We love it when you come to us with such ideas and can't wait to collaborate on those projects.

For now, our inventory is dangerously low right now so back to the kitchen we go. We have purchased hundreds of pounds of onions, carrots and kiwi and we are ready to make more. Next time you take a look at our blog, you will actually see photos of fruit and vegetables boiling up in gigantic pots... our favourite! As always, we look forward to sharing the process with you. See you soon.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Sticky Spoon at the Market

Last Saturday, on a particularly stormy morning, we got out of bed way before the sun, when the air is at its coldest, and braved both snow and then pouring rain to head to the Vancouver Winter Farmers Market. We packed up the Mini Cooper until it was about to burst with tent weights, tablecloths, plates, banners, spoons and of course, jam.

Considering the fact that if there is so much as a single snowflake in the air, Vancourites don't leave the comfort of their own homes, we were grateful to see that the market was still fairly busy. We got soaking wet, froze our toes and fingers off but the sun finally came out and we had a great time. We got to do something really satisfying and that is talk to farmers and market customers, offer samples of our jams and discuss our product ideas with local people who really care about where their food comes from and how it is produced.

It made for a long day (especially for one of us who had to run from the market, frozen toes and all, to work a full shift at the restaurant, at a particularly crazy busy time of year... ) but we enjoyed the atmosphere and appreciate that some of you came to visit us.

For those of you who preferred to wait for a more pleasant day to leave your house, we will be at the Farmers Market at Nat Bailey Stadium from 10am to 2pm next Saturday, January 21st, as well as February 11th and 25th. March and april dates have yet to be decided. We would love to see you! If the time or place does not suit your schedule, keep in mind that we will deliver our jams to you if you live in or near Vancouver. We have even shipped those little jars to different cities across Canada so no need to worry, there are many ways to get Sticky Spoon to you.

We are also currently working on three new flavours of jams for Sticky Spoon. We are doing research, testing batches of preserves and contacting farms for very large quantities of fruit and vegetables. The new flavours should be available in the next month so keep in touch!