• Planning for Thanksgiving!

    Best ways to can up that Thanksgiving turkey!

  • Mustards are perfect for Off Season Canning

    Three great mustards to keep the water boiling through the off season!

  • Canning Dried Beans

    If you have not tasted home canned pinto beans you don't know what you are missing! So good... you will never buy store bought again! Make refried beans in a snap!

  • Canning Potatoes that are Picture Perfect!

    The safe process and tips for canning potatoes that are perfect for meals, potato salad, and so much more!

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Cran Cherry Relish

Melanie sent me a great recipe for some of your frozen fruit as a great relish or maybe a side dish for pork or turkey. This combination includes frozen sweet cherries which will add a great flavor opposite the tartness of the cranberries without using sugar. The recipe is using honey and apple juice to naturally sweeten and round out the flavor by adding the ginger! 

I recently did a cranberry pineapple ginger relish that is amazing. I will share the recipe at the bottom of this one!
Thank you again Melanie for the pictures and feedback on the recipe!

Cran Cherry Relish 


6 ounces frozen cranberries
6 ounces frozen sweet cherries
¾ cup apple juice
½ teaspoon minced ginger
Pinch of salt
1 to 2 tablespoons honey (optional)
1/4 cup bottled lemon juice

Preparation : Prepare 4 half pint jars, lids, and rings. Sterilize the jars and keep them in the hot water till its time for processing. Make sure to fill your water bath canner and get the water to a simmer.

Cooking: In a stainless steel or enameled dutch pot combine thawed cranberries and cherries. Add apple juice, ginger and honey if desired. Heat to a simmer. After about 10 minutes the cranberries will start to pop. Increase to medium heat.  Add lemon juice and continue to stir till the cranberries are opened and the mixture mounds on a spoon, about 15 minutes. Watch for the splatter. Remove from heat.

Filling the jars:  On a dishtowel place your hot jars and fill with the the mixture.  Using your funnel ladle into each of the jars leaving ½” headspace. Remove air bubbles and refill to the proper headspace if necessary. Taking a clean paper towel wet it with warm water and wipe the rims of the jars removing any food particles that would interfere with a good seal. Using your magic wand extract the lids from the hot water and place them on the now cleaned rims. Add your rings to the tops of each of the jars and turn to seal just "finger tight".


Processing: Make sure your rack is on the bottom of the canner and place the jars in the water bath making sure that the water covers each of the jars by 1 to 2 inches. Add hot water to the canner if it doesn't measure up. Cover the pot and turn up the heat under the canner and wait for the water to start boiling. Once the water has come to a boil start your timer for 10 minutes. When complete turn off the heat and remove the cover and let the jars sit for another few minutes. Remove the jars and place them back on the dishtowel in a place that they will sit overnight to cool. Do not touch or move them till the next morning.


Sealing: Some time in the next hour your jars will be making a "pinging" or "popping" noise. That is the glass cooling and the reaction of the lids being sucked into the jar for proper sealing. Some recipes may take overnight to seal. Check your lids and reprocess any jars that did not seal.


Basic Herb Jellies

I have done herb jelly in the past, Lavender chardonnayLavender champagne, but I really like the process that Vicky used in infusing the flavor by letting it sit overnight. With so many of us having such busy lives it's a great way to spread out the process over two days. 

Surprisingly there are many herbs that have such interesting and amazing tastes when they are boiled and then used in recipes. You may not know that there are several basils and a few other herbs that have a more "sweet" note to them; Cinnamon basil, pineapple sage, Lemon basil, Lime basil, Lemon verbena, and Chocolate Mint. I'm sure that you know of more! 

When Vicky posted these beautiful jars on my site I just had to share her process and the final recipe. 

Basic Herb Jelly recipe - Cinnamon Basil

Makes 4 half pint jars
2 cups of your favorite fresh herb leaves or flowers (if using dry herbs, use 1 cup)( I use cinnamon basil included flowers)
2 cups water, apple juice or white wine ( I used white wine)
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice or white wine vinegar ( I used white wine vinegar) 5% acidity
4 cups sugar 
3 ounces liquid fruit pectin
pinch of salt
Preparation:  Coarsely chop your chosen herbs and put in a medium saucepan. Add 2 cups of water, juice or wine and bring to a constant boil for about 10 seconds. Remove from heat, cool, pour into a quart size jar and cover container and keep in darkness 24 hours. Strain through three layers of cheesecloth discarding herbs, so that you have
1 1/2 cups of the liquid.

Cooking:  Pour the herbal infusion (liquid) into a large cooking pot and add lemon juice or vinegar and the sugar. Bring to a hard boil, then add the liquid pectin and continue to boil for exactly one minute. Remove from heat and skim off any foam and discard it.

Filling the jars:  On a dishtowel place hot jars and ladle into hot jars to 1/4" headspace in the jar.  Remove air bubbles and adjust head-space, if necessary, by adding more jelly. Wipe rim with clean cloth or paper-towel, center lid on jar, screw band down till resistance is met, then increase to fingertip-tight.

Processing: Make sure your rack is on the bottom of the canner and place the jars in the water bath making sure that the water covers each of the jars by 1 to 2 inches. Add hot water to the canner if it doesn't measure up. Cover the pot and turn up the heat under the canner and wait for the water to start boiling. Once the water has come to a boil start your timer for 10 minutes. When complete turn off the heat and remove the cover and let the jars sit for another few minutes. Remove the jars and place them back on the dishtowel in a place that they will sit overnight to cool. Do not touch or move them till the next morning.

Sealing: Sometime in the next hour your jars will be making a "pinging" or "popping" noise. That is the glass cooling and the reaction of the lids being sucked into the jar for proper sealing. Some recipes may take overnight to seal. Check your lids and reprocess any jars that did not seal after waiting several hours.

Labeling:  Make sure to label your jars after they have cooled with the name of the recipe and the date canned.

canning jelly
Vicky's Cinnamon Basil Jelly


Sunday, October 19, 2014

Red Jalapeno Jelly

The basics for pepper jelly is the combination of some kind of hot peppers such as jalapenos, habaneros, or serranos, depending on your level of heat, and the mixture of vinegar to bring up the pH. The only way to get this to gel is a lot of sugar and pectin. The sugar helps to cut the tanginess of the vinegar and at the same time work towards making the mixture gel. You could cook this mixture to 220 degrees, which is the point at which sugar turns to a soft ball, but to ensure the gel using the liquid pectin will perfect in getting the texture of jelly. 

Paula shared with me her gorgeous version of the classic recipe from the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving. Paula has been in the middle of making Holiday gifts and used red jalapenos and green peppers to come up with the 12 oz of peppers. You can interchange the peppers as long as you only use the measurement called out for in the recipe.
Below is the pictures of her amazing jars. Thank you Paula for letting me share them with my readers. 

Jalapeno Jelly

12 oz  jalapeƱo peppers
2 cups cider vinegar, divided
6 cups granulated sugar
2 pouches liquid pectin

Preparation : Prepare 5 half pint jars, lids, and rings. Sterilize the jars and keep them in the hot water till its time for processing. Make sure to fill your water bath canner and get the water to a simmer. In a blender or food processor puree peppers and 1 cup of vinegar until smooth. 

Cooking: In a large stainless steel pot combine pepper puree and the remaining 1 cup vinegar and sugar. Bring to a boil over high heat and boil, stirring constantly for 10 minutes. Stir in pectin. Boil hard, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Remove from heat.

Filling the jars:  On a dishtowel place your hot jars and using your funnel in each jar using a ladle then fill the jars leaving 1/4 ” headspace.  Taking a clean papertowel wet it with warm water and wipe the rims of the jars removing any food particles that would interfere with a good seal. Using your magic wand extract the lids from the hot water and place them on the now cleaned rims. Add your rings to the tops of each of the jars and turn to seal just "finger tight". 

Processing: Make sure your rack is on the bottom of the canner and place the jars in the water bath making sure that the water covers each of the jars by 1 to 2 inches. Add hot water to the canner if it doesn't measure up. Cover the pot and turn up the heat under the canner and wait for the water to start boiling. Once the water has come to a boil start your timer for 10 minutes. When complete turn off the heat and remove the cover and let the jars sit for another few minutes. Remove the jars and place them back on the dishtowel in a place that they will sit overnight to cool. Do not touch or move them till the next morning.

Sealing: Some time in the next hour your jars will be making a "pinging" or "popping" noise. That is the glass cooling and the reaction of the lids being sucked into the jar for proper sealing. Some recipes may take overnight to seal. check your lids and reprocess any jars that did not seal.

Jalapeno Pepper jelly
Paula's Red Jalapeno with Green Pepper Jelly




Mary B. allowed me to share her beautiful jars of green jalapeno jelly!
These are so well done! Thanks again Mary!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Cranberry Salad - A Combination of Cranberries, Pineapple,and Manadrins

A few times over the years I remember my mom making cranberry salad. It was a mix of jello and cranberries and other tidbits of fruit with a dollop of whip cream on the top. It was more of a dessert for me and my sisters, but I'm always looking for a reinvention of the cranberry sauce we serve every year at Thanksgiving. 

I have made about 4 different cranberry sauces, one from Sherrie and another from Leslie which over the last two years have been major hits with my followers. (I will post the link to those recipes at the bottom of this page.) 

I have recreated the cranberry salad recipe for canning and it's very close to the original. I omitted the jello and used Clear Jel as my thickener. The consistency is less "jiggly" but the flavor is awesome. 


It can be a side dish or used for other purposes like a topping on pastries, pancakes and waffles, or a yogurt or ice cream topping. I left the fruit somewhat chunky since I like that texture rather than everything being so creamy like a sauce. You can also add nuts at the end just before ladeling into the jars.  It's not sweet like a pie filling but just enough sugar to cut the tartness of the cranberries and pineapple.
Clear Jel is available at the SB Canning store! 


Cranberry Salad
Yields: about 7 half pints

Ingredients:
3 1/2 cups (approximately 2 - 12oz bags) fresh cranberries, chopped
1 large can (20 oz) pineapple (crushed or tidbits - reserve the liquid)
1 small can (11oz) mandarin oranges 
1/4 C. bottled lemon juice
2 C. sugar
1 1/2 C. cranberry juice
1/3 C. clear jel & 1/3 C. sugar & 1/3 cup pineapple or cranberry juice

1 C. chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)

Directions:

Cooking: Cook cranberries with 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 cup cranberry juice in saucepan till boiling. Add pineapples, oranges, lemon juice, remainder of cranberry juice and sugar. Cook about 15 minutes more till the mixture comes back to a boil. Meanwhile in a separate bowl mix with a whisk Clear jel and sugar and 1/3 cup of the reserved pineapple juice. If there isn't enough pineapple juice you can add either cranberry juice or water to get to the 1/3 cup. Once the fruit in the pot comes to a boil add the Clear Jel mixture while stirring. Cook until slightly thicken. Remove from heat. At this point if you are using the nuts you will add them now, stirring them in gently to incorporate. 

Filling the jars:  On a dishtowel place hot jars and ladle into hot jars to 1/2" headspace in the jar.  Remove air bubbles and adjust head-space , if necessary, by adding more sauce. Wipe rim with clean cloth or paper-towel, center lid on jar, screw band down till resistance is met, then increase to fingertip-tight.

Processing: Make sure your rack is on the bottom of the canner and place the jars in the water bath making sure that the water covers each of the jars by 1 to 2 inches. Add hot water to the canner if it doesn't measure up. Cover the pot and turn up the heat under the canner and wait for the water to start boiling. Once the water has come to a boil start your timer for 10 minutes. When complete turn off the heat and remove the cover and let the jars sit for another few minutes. Remove the jars and place them back on the dishtowel in a place that they will sit overnight to cool. Do not touch or move them till the next morning.

Sealing: Sometime in the next hour your jars will be making a "pinging" or "popping" noise. That is the glass cooling and the reaction of the lids being sucked into the jar for proper sealing. Some recipes may take overnight to seal. Check your lids and reprocess any jars that did not seal after waiting several hours.

Labeling:  Make sure to label your jars after they have cooled with the name of the recipe and the date canned.































Other Cranberry Sauce Recipes: 
Leslie's Cranberry Orange Sauce

Sherrie's Whole Cranberry Sauce

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Apple Pie Jam - Another inspiration for apples!

If you haven't tried to make jam with Clear Jel you don't know what you're missing. Chris, a follower on my Facebook page, took a classic flavor of apple pie and created a jam that looks amazing.  
The sweetness of the apples, with essence of cinnamon and vanilla make a jam that not only taste great on your morning toast but can be used for apple tartlets, perfect for filling of homemade poptarts and handpies, and is a great topping for waffles and pancakes.  The apples are diced and work better in these more delicate pastry recipes. 

Thank you Chris for letting me share your adaptation and your mouth watering picture! 

Apple Pie Jam made with Clear Jel
(note: this is a small batch and yielded 3 -4 half pints depending on your sugar)
4 cups diced apples
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup Clear Jel
1/4 cup sugar + 1 cup
3/4 t.  ground cinnamon
1 t. vanilla extract
2 T.  bottled lemon juice

Clear Jel is available at the SB Canning Store! 

Preparation: Prepare 3-4 half pints , lids, and rings. Sterilize the jars and keep them in the hot water till it’s time for processing. Make sure to fill your water bath canner and get the water to a simmer. 

Cooking:
  •  In a stainless steel saucepan, combine diced apples and 1/3 cup sugar . 
  •  Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes longer. Add the cinnamon and vanilla. 
  • Add additional 1/3 cup of sugar and stir in for 5 minutes. With a spoon taste the mixture to see if it's sweet enough. Remember it will be hot so let it cool on the spoon for a minute.  If you add more sugar only add in 1/4 cup increments. Note: you are going to add 1/4 cup more sugar with the Clear Jel. 
  • In a separate bowl add 1/4 cup of Clear Jel and 1/4 cup of sugar. Mix together the powders with a wire whisk. 
  • Using your ladle scoop out about 1/4 cup of the hot liquid from the pot. You can instead use an additional 1/4 cup of water or other liquid if you want to add additional flavor. Some suggestions would be apple juice, grape juice, or orange juice. 
  • Use the whisk to completely stir the mixture until it looks smooth like milk.  
  • Add 2T. of bottled lemon juice to the fruit in the pot and while stirring increase the heat under the pot to medium. 
  • Pour your Clear Jel mixture into the pot and stir for about a minute until the jam is thick. This will be like adding a thickener to make gravy. Turn off heat and remove pan from stove.  
Chris's Apple Pie Jam
 Filling the jars:  On a dishtowel place hot jars and ladle jam into hot jars to 1/4" headspace in the jar.  Remove air bubbles and adjust head-space , if necessary, by adding more jam. Wipe rim with clean cloth or paper-towel, center lid on jar, screw band down till resistance is met, then increase to fingertip-tight.

Processing: Make sure your rack is on the bottom of the canner and place the jars in the water bath making sure that the water covers each of the jars by 1 to 2 inches. Add hot water to the canner if it doesn't measure up. Cover the pot and turn up the heat under the canner and wait for the water to start boiling. Once the water has come to a boil start your timer for 10 minutes. When complete turn off the heat and remove the cover and let the jars sit for another few minutes. Remove the jars and place them back on the dishtowel in a place that they will sit overnight to cool. Do not touch or move them till the next morning.

Sealing: Sometime in the next hour your jars will be making a "pinging" or "popping" noise. That is the glass cooling and the reaction of the lids being sucked into the jar for proper sealing. Some recipes may take overnight to seal. Check your lids and reprocess any jars that did not seal after waiting several hours.


Labeling:  
Make sure to label your jars after they have cooled with the name of the recipe and the date canned.