Fruits and vegetables which have been prepared and canned for a long-term shelf life are called Fruit preserve. For making a fruit preserve we have to use a gelling agent or sugar and honey can also be used. Depending on the procedure and type of ingredients used, the fruit preserve can be subdivided as jams, jellies and marmalades. There are different types of fruit preserves made from sweet or savory ingredients with jam and jellies being the most popular ones.
A jelly is defined as a clear fruit spread having sweetened fruits or vegetable juices. Pectin can be added if the fruit does not give enough juice. Jelly is even defined as a sweet set of dessert made by adding gelatin to the fruit juice. For making the jelly after initial heating of the fruit pulp it is filtered by suspending it on a jelly bag (made from muslin or stockinet) and allowing the straining to occur under gravity for draining out the excess water. The suspension should be allowed in a smooth manner and any compression or squeezing of the jelly bag should not be done.
The fruit jam is produced in a similar way. For making the jam the fruit is first heated with water and sugar and then stored in cans and containers for a long life. Normally a single fruit is used rather than a combination of fruits for making the jam. A good jam should be soft, good colored, a good fruit flavor and a semi-jellied texture which is soft and can be easily spread.
You have to follow a certain procedure and recipe for canning the jellies and jams. First is to wash the glass or the jar and then rinse it with the hot water. Make the jelly and jam as per the direction given in the recipe and then pour it in the jar leaving the top ½ inch open. Cover it with hot paraffin immediately, remove the air bubbles, clean the top surface and cover it with the lid. Seal the jar immediately and screw the metal bands on the lid down tightly. Let the canned jelly cool with a thick cloth overnight. Store it in a cool dry place. The modern day homemade canning are the best as they save a lot of time, money and can be a wonderful part of food for your family. The procedure adopted for canning jelly keeps it totally healthy and hygienic forever. They can be easily stored for many years adding to the family fun at times.
When you can jelly and jams using the right method, you will never have to worry about the canned food go bad despite of any power cuts or any mechanical failures. This makes Homemade canning an essential part of kitchen duties to get a self reliance in your lifestyle. Homemade canning can allow you and your family to eat chemical free, jellies and jams already cooked just waiting for a meal.
Along with the method mentioned above there are many other methods of canning jelly and jams. Canning jelly can be done using different techniques, utensils, ingredients and procedures depending on the fruit, colour and taste you are looking for. Try and select the best recipe and procedure for canning jelly and jams to get the best taste and give it a long shelf life.
Homemade canning is the best way to go for canning jelly and jam if you desire to have a wholesome, chemical free food and establishing a storage method that gives you an easy and tasty jellies and jams down the years without having to store in the refrigerator is an added advantage.