Stirring Things Up After Letting Things Sit

Jam-and-Jelly-Preserving-Pectins-101A long-time canner and blog reader, Ramona, wrote in the other day with a good question about why jams tend to separate – meaning the fruit goes to the top of the jam rather than being evenly distributed through the jell.

Here’s her question:

I noticed on the mixed berry and rhubarb jam recipe you suggested letting the jam set before putting into jars and the water bath canner. You said this will help keep the fruit mixed. Does this help with other jam recipes?  I have done canning for years, I am 76 years old and started canning with my Grandmother when I was a child. I have had several different jams to separate after the canning process. Would it help to let it set a few minutes before putting into jars? Pepper jelly especially separates.

Here’s something to consider … Continue reading

An Interesting Apple Butter Question

Gina, one of our blog readers, sent in an interesting question about our apple butter recipe and using apples fresh from the orchard …

I am thinking about using your apple butter recipe that uses 10 1/2 lbs apples, 2 cups cider, 2 cups apple vinegar and 5 cups of sugar (I know I left out some of the spice ingredients).  I have a couple of questions.  I am using apples from our unsprayed trees, so I’ll need to cut out any bad parts.  Can I weigh them after I’ve cut out the damaged parts?

Gina also had a second question about the recipe …

I would like to cut down the amount of sugar in the recipe — any issues with decreasing the amount of sugar by 2 cups or so?

Here are some things to keep in mind:

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