Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Jewel Tones

Home canning is becoming a lost art. I think it's really sad, because there's nothing quite like the feeling of looking at something you've created with your own hands--particularly something that will provide for the physical well being of your family.

I was asked to teach the teenage girls in our congregation how to can homemade jelly tonight. I've never actually done this (unless you count canning apricot jam at my grandma's house when I was 12) but as I said--lost art--they were unable to find anyone who did have experience except for ladies who claimed they hadn't canned "in 20 years!"

So I decided I needed a test run so I would have a better idea of what I was "teaching" the girls. The girls meet for only an hour so I used a shortcut method for making jelly by purchasing bottled juice. Super easy!

So you need only 100% grape juice (Concord--purple-- is what I saw was recommended, but it might be fun to try a white grape sometime as well), sugar, and pectin.

Pectin is a substance that occurs naturally in many fruits and is what makes the jelly "jell". Powdered pectin is a natural product made from apples and provides enough pectin to help homemade jellies reach the desired consistency.

Follow the recipe in the pectin you buy to measure juice, then add pectin and bring to a boil.

Add sugar and bring back to a hard boil.

Boil 1 minute stirring constantly.

Ladle in to clean jars. Wipe the rims and top with lids and rings.

Submerge in waterbath canner and process for time alloted by your altitude in the instructions.

Remove to a towel to cool. Let sit undisturbed overnight. Mark contents and date on lid (Lids aren't reusable, the rings are. )

Then sit back and admire your beautiful jewel-toned jelly jars!


Brian's Wife said...

Your jars look so pretty. Sometimes when I can things I have a hard time letting my family eat the things I have canned...I think I would rather have the jars decorate my pantry with their prettiness.However, in the end I usually give in...but it usually has to be for something I feel is "justified" making a yummy treat out of my peaches.

Mama said...

Very cool and much more tasty than what you buy! Good job. Make certain to post after young women's.

Anonymous said...

Looks like your 'test run' was very successful! Beautiful results! I must confess you don't look too pregnant in your picture, but I guess there's still a long way to go. Good luck with Young Women!


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