Saturday, May 7, 2011

mulberries: 1st harvest & 1st canning

Jamming is not hard and what an awesome way to use fallen fruit!
We just bought a house and we have not had time to plant a garden yet (we're working hard on the house - a fixer) but thankfully we have many fruit trees! So today I made jam with a friend of mine with some experience under her belt.  Here's our basic recipe:

First we boiled our ball jars and lids (separately) for 10 minutes and left them to sit in the hot water.

6 generous cups lightly smashed mulberries
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (also locally harvested)
1/4 cup good balsamic vinegar (next time I'll add another tablespoon - thank you for the suggestion Galen!)
4 cups evaporated cane juice (next time I'll use sage honey)
1 tablespoon pectin (next time I'll use apples)
1 tablespoon calcium water (it came with the pectin so we used it)

We mixed the sugar in with the pectin and set aside.

We brought the fruit with the lemon juice, vinegar & calcium water to a boil, added the sugar-pectin and simmered, stirring for 1-2 minutes.  We brought it back up to a boil and turned off the heat.

One at a time, we filled up the jars to 1/4 inch from the top, wiped off the rim, screwed the lids on fairly tight and returned the hot jars to the boiling water for 5 or so minutes.  it was so easy that we made another recipe:

3 1/2 cups minced local citrus, seeds & white pith removed (many kumquats, 3 tangerines, 2 oranges & a lemon)
zest from 2 oranges and a lemon
3 1/2 cups minced loquat, peeled & seeded
2 cups fresh local orange juice
2 cups evaporated cane juice
1 1/2 tablespoons pectin (mixed into the sugar)
1 tablespoon calcium water

We brought the fruit & juice to a boil and simmered for 20 minutes, added in the calcium water, brought back to a boil, stirred in the sugar-pectin for 2 minutes and then filled the jars in the same manner as above.

We got 3 pints of mulberry jam and 4 1/2 pints of loquat marmalade resting undisturbed for the night.  Can't wait to try them on fresh baked biscuits!

Thanks Celeste!

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