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Heathen's Kitchen Witches Compendium

How to Make Jams and Jellies

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Edited by Crimsonwolf

How to Make Jams and Jellies

Part 6 of "How to Can Fruits and Vegetables From Your Garden."

If you have an abundance of fruit, you can make jam, jelly, or fruit butter. All require sugar and pectin. All fruit has natural pectin already inside, but some have more than others. That is why some fruits require that you add additional pectin in order to get it to jell properly. Most fruits, however, will eventually gel if you cook it long enough, but you should be aware that you can over-cook it. The quickest way to make jelly is to buy pectin at the store and add it to the fruit and/or fruit juice.

There is a difference between jam, jelly, and fruit butter:

  • Jam: is made of chopped or crushed fruit and sugar and spreads easily.
  • Jelly: is made of fruit juice and sugar. It is stiffer than jam and will hold its shape if cut.
  • Fruit Butter: is made of fruit puree, sugar and spices. It is cooked down to a thick constistency, but can easily be spread.

Making jam, jelly and fruit butter is similar to canning fruit and vegetables in a boiling-water canner. If you need to read up on how to use a boiling-water canner, follow this link.How to Can Vegetables Using a Boiling Water Canner Page 3 of "How to Can and Freeze Fruits and Vegetables from Your Garden. This page talks about how to use a boiling-water canner.

 

Equipment You Will Need

  • Large Cooking Pot
  • Canning jars
  • Jar lids and bands
  • Colander or food mill
  • Boiling-water Canner

 

Jam and Jelly Methods

(With or Without Added Pectin.)

Without Added Pectin:


If you are making jam or jelly, and you do not want to add commercial pectin, you should use these pointers:

For Jelly:

  • Add peels and cores to the fruit while it is cooking. This will add pectin to the juice so it will gel better.
  • Only use fresh juice, not canned or frozen.
  • Don't overcook. Pectin breaks down after prolonged cooking.
  • Jelly is done when it hangs of the edge of a spoon. I also use this test for jam; it works for me.

For Jam:

  • Wash fruit, but don't soak it.
  • Crush fruit, but don't puree it.
  • To prevent scorching, you can bake your jam in the oven. Simply cook it on the stovetop until ingredients are well mixed and start to boil, then transfer it to the oven, stirring occasionally.
  • You will know when your jam is done if it quickly gels after placing a small amount of it in the freezer for a minute.

With Added Pectin:


This is the quickest way to make jams and jellies. Follow these pointers for a successful jelly or jam making experience:

For Jams and Jellies:

  • You may use canned or frozen fruits and juices, as well as fresh, to make jams and jellies with added pectin.
  • Simply time the cooking process according to the package directions, and your jams and jellies should gel to the right consistency.
  • To double check for doneness, use the "freezer test" or "spoon test" mentioned above.
  • Adding pectin may cause the jam or jelly to foam. This is unattractive, but can still be eaten. You may want to "scrape" the foam off before pouring the jam or jelly into jars.
  • Remember that old pectin may or may not gel. Use at your own risk!
  • No need to search for recipes when you are going to use commercially prepared pectin. Recipes are include in the box.

 

Jam Recipes

 

Apricot:Wash and pit apricots. Cut in half and cook in just enough water to keep from scorching. When soft,crush fruit. For every 4 1/2 cups of fruit, add 4 cups sugar and 2 T. lemon juice. Boil mixture until done, stirring constantly. (Use the freezer test.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars,leaving 1/4 inch headspace, and seal. Process 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

Apricot and Pineapple:Wash and slice apricots. For every 7 cups sliced apricots, add 5 cups sugar and 3 cups crushed, canned pineapple. Cook for 30 minutes and check for doneness. Seal in hot jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace, and process pints for 10 minutes in boiling-water canner.

 

 

Berries:Wash and stem berries. Start to crush the berries, then heat them and crush some more. For every 4 cups of fruit, add 4 cups of sugar. Boil until done, stirring constantly.(Use the freezer test to check for doneness.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars,leaving 1/4 inch headspace, and seal. Process 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

 

Blackberry and Apricot:Wash apricots,pit and slice. Wash berries,heat, and crush. For every cup of apricots,add 1/3 cup blackberry juice and 1 cup blackberries, and 1 1/2 cup sugar. Boil until done, stirring constantly.(Use the freezer test to check for doneness.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars,leaving 1/4 inch headspace, and seal. Process 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

Cranberry:Wash cranberries.Cook, mash, and put through strainer. For every 8 cups cranberries, add 1 c. water, 1 c. vinegar, 1 T. ground cinnamon, 1/2 T. ground cloves, 1/2 T. ground allspice, and 6 cups sugar. Boil until done, stirring constantly.(Use the freezer test to check for doneness.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars,leaving 1/4 inch headspace, and seal. Process 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

 

Grape:Wash grapes and heat with enough water to prevent scorching. When juicey, run the grapes through a colander, sqeezing the pulp through the holes. To every 2 quarts of grapes, add 6 cups sugar.Cook until done, stirring constantly.(Use the freezer test to check for doneness.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace, and seal. Process 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

 

Peach:Wash,peel, and pit peaches. Cut into small pieces, cook, and crush. For every 6 cups peaches, add 5 cups sugar, and 2 T. lemon juice. Cook until done, stirring constantly.(Use the freezer test to check for doneness.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars,leaving 1/4 inch headspace, and seal. Process 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

 

Plum:Wash and pit.For every 5 cups of plums, add 3/4 cups of water and cook until soft.Add 3 cups of sugar and boil until done,stirring constantly. (Use the freezer test to check for doneness.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars and,leaving 1/4 inch headspace, seal. Process 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

 

Plum-peach:Wash,peel, and pit peaches. Wash and pit plums. Cut fruit into small pieces.Using equal amounts of peaches and plums, cook and crush. For every 14 cups of peach-plum mixture, add 12 cups sugar and 1 thinly sliced lemon.Cook until done, stirring constantly.(Use the freezer test to check for doneness.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars,leaving 1/4 inch headspace, and seal. Process 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

Jelly Recipes

 

Apple:Wash apples and cut in quarters. Do not peel. You may also use peels and cores only. Cover with water and cook until done. Strain twice through cheesecloth or jelly bag. for every cup of boiling juice, add 3/4 cup sugar. Cook until done, stirring constantly.(Use the spoon test to check for doneness.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars,leaving 1/4 inch headspace, and seal.Process 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

 

Blackberry:Wash berries. For every pound of blackberries, add 1/4 cup of water and cook for 10 minutes. Press through a cheesecloth or jelly bag. For every cup of blackberry juice, add 1 cup of sugar.Cook until done, stirring constantly.(Use the spoon test to check for doneness.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars,leaving 1/4 inch headspace, and seal.Process 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

Dandelion:Pick and wash 1 quart dandelion blossoms (no stems.) Boil blossoms for 3 minutes and drain. Save the liquid for the jelly. Using 3 cups of the dandelion liquid, add 4 1/2 cups of sugar and 1 box pectin. You can add 1 tsp. lemon or orange extract for flavor.Boil until done, stirring constantly.(Use the freezer test to check for doneness.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars,leaving 1/4 inch headspace, and seal.

 

 

Grape:Wash and crush grapes. Add enough water to keep grapes from scorching and boil until soft (about 15 min.)Strain through cheesecloth or a jelly bag, pressing done to extract all juice.Let stand overnight so sediment can settle. The next morning pour juice off and discard the sediment. Then, for each cup of boiling juice, add 3/4 cup sugar.Cook until done, stirring constantly.(Use the spoon test to check for doneness.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars,leaving 1/4 inch headspace,and seal.Process 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

 

Peach:Wash peaches,pit and quarter. Cover with water and boil until juicey. You can also use peach peels only.You must add pectin to peaches because peaches do not have enough of their own to jell properly. Read the instructions on the pectin box for how much to add. You may also mix the peach juice with apple juice, because apple juice contains a lot of natural pectin. In this case, add 2 cups of apple juice, and the juice of half a lemon to every 2 cups of peach juice. Add 3/4 cup of sugar to every cup of juice.Cook until done, stirring constantly.(Use the spoon test to check for doneness.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars,leaving 1/4 inch headspace, and seal.Process 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

 

Plum:Wash and pit plums.Cook with just enough water to prevent scorching. Cook until soft and press through a jelly bag or cheesecloth. For every 5 1/2 cups of plum juice, add 1 package of powdered pectin to 7 !/2 cups sugar.Cook until done, stirring constantly.(Use the spoon test to check for doneness.)Pour into half-pint or pint jars,leaving 1/4 inch headspace, and seal.Process 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

Fruit Butter Recipes

 

Apple Butter:Wash and quarter apples. Add with enough water to keep from scorching and cook until soft. Push through a colander to make applesauce. For every 16 cups of applesauce, add 8 cups sugar, 3 t. cinnamon, 3/4 t. ground cloves, 1/2 t. allspice, and 1/2 c. red hot candy (The red hots are optional, but they do give the applebutter a pretty color and enhance the flavor.)Cook this mixture down. This could take 1 1/2-2 1/2 hours, depending on how much you are making. Stir frequently to prevent scorching. Pour into 1/2 pint or pint jars, leaving 1/4 headspace, and seal. Process 10 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

 

Apricot Butter:Wash, stem, and pit apricots. Cook until soft, adding enough water to prevent scorching. Press through a colander to extract pulp. For every 1 1/2 quart of apricot pulp, add 3 cups sugar and 2 T. lemon juice. Stirring frequently, cook mixture down until it rounds up on a spoon. Pour into 1/2 pint or pint jars, leaving 1/4 headspace, and seal. Process 10 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

 

Peach Butter:Wash,peel,pit and chop peaches. (You can blanch the peaches to aid in the peeling process.)Cook until soft and enough water to prevent scorching. Press through a colander to extract pulp. For every 2 quarts of pulp, add 4 cups sugar. Stirring frequently, cook mixture down until it rounds up on a spoon. Pour into 1/2 pint or pint jars, leaving 1/4 headspace, and seal. Process 10 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

 

Pear Butter:Wash, quarter and cook pears, adding enough water to prevent scorching.Press through a colander to extract pulp. For every 2 quarts of pulp, add 4 cups sugar, 1/3 cup orange juice, 1 t. grated orange peel, and 1/2 t. nutmeg.Stirring frequently, cook mixture down until it rounds up on a spoon. Pour into 1/2 pint or pint jars, leaving 1/4 headspace, and seal. Process 10 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

 

Strawberry Butter:Wash, crush and cook strawberries, adding enough water to prevent scorching. Press through a colander to extract pulp. For every 5 cups of strawberry pulp, add 2 cups sugar and 2 T. lemon juice. Let stand for 3 hours. Cook mixture down (stirring frequently) until it rounds up on a spoon. Pour into 1/2 pint or pint jars, leaving 1/4 headspace, and seal. Process 10 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

Marmalade Recipes

Lemon Marmalade: Juice lemons and peel off the thin, yellow skin. Simmer 1 3/4 C. peel, 1/2 C. lemon juice, and 1/2 C. water for 25 minutes. Add 1 1/2 C. more lemon juice and 6 C. sugar. Stir and bring to a rolling boil. Remove from heat and let stand overnight, in a covered bowl, in a cool place. Once again, boil mixture and add 3 ounces of liquid pectin. Boil until mixture sheets off of a spoon, skim off foam, pour into jars leaving 1/4 inch headspace, and seal. Process 10 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

 

Orange Marmalade: For every 4 C. thinly sliced oranges, add 2 thinly sliced lemons and 3 C. water. (Remember to discard the seeds.) Boil for 5 minutes and let stand overnight in a cool place. Boil 1 hour and let stand again for 4 hours. Add 6 C. sugar and boil until mixture sheets off of a spoon. Add 1/2 C. lemon juice, pour into jars and seal, leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Process 10 minutes in a boiling-water canner.

Crimsowolf

Heathen's Kitchen Compendium