Laura Ann Masura cuts into a claret orange as she prepares one of her special… (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times )
Former Chicago indie bedrock bagman Laura Ann Masura has fabricated — and gotten into — an abominable lot of jams aback affective to Echo Park about seven years ago. But those aboriginal adulterated blueberry-Meyer auto abstracts and careful crystallized Clementines accept been almost accessible fixes compared with complications from a austere motorcycle blow in 2009. .
“These sorts of things absolutely aged you out, accomplish you access activity differently,” Masura says from her active allowance sofa. She has been briefly alone afresh by a additional reconstructive anaplasty afterwards about blow a bottom in the motorcycle accident. “Taking time, slowing bottomward and giving affliction and activity to anniversary accumulation of jam is actual therapeutic, actually.”
For Masura, authoritative jams beneath her Laura Ann’s Jams characterization has been as abundant about self-preservation as it has been about putting up melancholia bake-apple in anxious acidity combinations. Those jars of strawberry-Syrah and raspberry-habanero pepper accept additionally bigger affiliated her to an all-embracing mix of bounded restaurant and rocker accompany who accept kept a alert eye on her recovery. In turn, Masura’s adventure for abdomen accomplishment has brought her jam-obsessed association together.
With so abundant amoroso talk, it’s difficult to brainstorm that the animated Masura was already accepted in the underground Chicago bedrock arena as L.A. (Laura Ann) Beaver, the abrasive cofounder of the hard-edged changeable jailbait bandage Evil Beaver. Then again, the preserves maker confused to Los Angeles at the advancement of acquaintance and above bounded jailbait booking abettor Toast Boyd.
“People on the Chicago indie bedrock arena would beam if they heard I was authoritative jam,” says the 40-year-old. Her mother, Valerie Masura of Phoenix, interrupts to acclaim abuse her babe for not adorning that afflicted foot. She’s been in boondocks for the aftermost ages to advice out during her daughter’s recovery. About here, that agency authoritative the casual accumulation of jam. “I should allegation added for the mom batches,” jokes Masura.
Her aboriginal California start-up plan was a Chicago-style hot dog stand. That fizzled, but it did mark the alpha of what Masura calls her “general attention phase.” In amid her waitressing gigs, she began experimenting at home with authoritative condiments such as mustards and relishes and, later, jam. She fabricated jars of orange marmalade from backyard bake-apple by day and tucked it into affliction bales for accompany and ancestors aback home.
“For a Chicago girl, it acquainted like I was sending home bake-apple from a promised acreage in the winter,” she says, attached a active red accessory akin with binding blooming award about her waist. “To anticipate there is consistently some new amalgam bake-apple at the farmers markets — how can anyone in L.A. not appetite to accomplish jam?”
In fact, abounding of her accompany did appetite to advice accomplish those jams. On weekends, the Glitter Kitties, Masura’s all-female motorcycle club, hit the highways to aces up amoebic bake-apple and honey for her small-batch experiments. Kristen Thiele, the bass amateur in Masura’s aboriginal Chicago bandage Motorhome, drew the cartoon-like account of the jam maker that accompany generally advice hand-stamp on anniversary jar.
Recipes are generally a accumulation accomplishment too. A ambrosial angel adulate compound accustomed at Masura’s doorstep via the grandmother of a adherent who had been allowance aggregate fruit, and the guys beyond the artery at Origami Vinyl almanac boutique appropriate the blueberry-basil jam in the Laura Ann’s lineup. Added recently, Genevieve Ostrander, buyer of Echo Park’s Delilah Bakery, challenged Masura to actualize a compound with Jack Daniel’s. “I was cerebration Lynchburg lemonade goes Los Angeles,” Masura says of the final Meyer lemon-Tennessee whiskey combo.
Things were, as they say, jamming along. In August 2009, Masura abdicate her waitressing job at Silver Lake’s Gingergrass Vietnamese restaurant to allot abounding time to her business. Buyer John Himelstein had already been affairs up best of her account for his restaurants (he additionally owns Square One Dining in Hollywood). “He assuredly got me to booty my jamming seriously,” she says.
Less than a anniversary later, however, a Glitter Kitties ingredient-quest ride concluded in disaster. “We were headed to a birthmark acreage to ample our saddle accoutrements with fruit,” says Masura. “I don’t bethink abundant else.” She was hit by a car and actively injured.
Masura was bedfast best of that September and October. By November, she bare reconstructive anaplasty to save her larboard foot. “At that point, it was still capricious whether I would accumulate my bottom or they would amputate it,” recalls Masura. She had absolute through best of her savings.
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