November 14, 2011 by Scooter
With the abundance of tomatoes and basil we had in the garden this year, I started to do some research as to what to do with it all. This summer, we picked up a pressure canner at the thrift store and suddenly a new hobby was born. Spending time clicking through search engines for different and unique jam recipes, I came across a Yellow Tomato Basil Jam recipe over at Food In Jars… This is a great blog on canning with many recipes!
Yellow Tomato and Basil Jam
makes 3.5 pints or 7 half pints
4 pounds Sungold or other yellow tomatoes
3 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup lemon juice
zest of two lemons, divided
1/4 cup roughly chopped basil
Cut Sungold tomatoes in half, or, if using larger yellow tomatoes, chop them into smallish pieces.
Combine chopped tomatoes with sugar in a large, non-reactive pot and stir. Let sit for at least one hour, or until the tomatoes release their juice.
When ready to cook, prep canning pot and jars and place jam pot over high heat. Add lemon juice and bring to a boil.
Cook at a boil for 30-35, stirring frequently, until the tomatoes have softened and the syrup has gotten thick. Check set with plate test. Once you’re satisfied with the set, remove the pot from the heat and stir in half the lemon zest and chopped basil. Taste and add remaining lemon zest only if you feel the jam requires it.
Pour jam into prepared jars. Wipe rims, apply lids and rings. Process jars in a boiling water bath canner for 10 minutes.
When time is up, remove jars from pot and let them cool on a kitchen towel. When jars are cool enough to handle, remove rings and test seals. Place any unsealed jars in the refrigerator and use promptly. All sealed jars can be stored in a cool, dark place for up to 1 year.
Category Canning and Preserving | Tags: basil,canning,DIY,garden,heirloom,jam,jars,kitchen,preserving,storage,tomato,tomatoes,yellow | Comments Off on Yellow Tomato Basil Jam
November 7, 2011 by Scooter
This summer, we picked up a pressure canner at the thrift store and suddenly a new hobby was born. Spending time clicking through search engines for different and unique jam recipes, I came across a Chocolate Raspberry Jam recipe over at Epicurious. This jam has been by far our favorite!
Chocolate Raspberry Jam
makes 6 pints
6 Cups frozen raspberries or 7 pints of fresh raspberries
3 (1 ounce) unsweetened chocolate squares
4 cups granulated sugar
1 (1 3/4 ounce) box dry pectin for lower sugar recipes
1/2 teaspoon margarine or butter
1. Crush berries thoroughly, 1 cup at a time. If using frozen berries, use both liquid and solids; they were all part of the orginal fresh berry. (sieve 1/2 of the pulp to remove some of the seeds if desired)
2. Make sure your canning equipment is scrupulously clean, and place 7 pint or half pint jars on a rack in a boiling water canner. Fill the canner with water, adding a shot of vinegar to prevent mineral buildup, and bring to a boil while you prepare the jam. Allow it to boil for 10 minutes to sterilize the jars, then turn heat down to keep the jars hot. Remember to keep a kettle of water handy, and a saucepan of boiling water for your lids and rings.
3. Measure 6 cups of crushed fruit into a 6-8 quart heavy non-reactive saucepan. Break the chocolate squares into smaller pieces and add them to the saucepan.
4. Measure sugar into a seperate bowl. Mix 1/4 cup of the measured sugar with the pectin powder in another small bowl. Stir pectin-sugar mixture into fruit in a saucepan. Add Butter. Bring quickly to a full rolling boil. Boil for EXACTLY 1 MINUTE, stirring constantly.
5. Remove pan from heat. Skim off any foam and ladle the jam into hot sterilized pint or half-pint canning jars, leaving 1/4 inch head space.
6. Process for 10 minutes in a boiling water canner.
7. Remove the jars to a towel, newspaper lined surface, invert for 10 minutes, and allow to cool. Label the jars and store in a coll dry place for up to 1 year.
Category Canning and Preserving | Tags: canning,chocolate,jam,jars,kitchen,preserving,raspberry,storage | Comments Off on Chocolate Raspberry Jam
October 18, 2011 by Scooter
This weekend I decided that I wanted to make Concord Grape Jam after reading the tutorial on it over at The Hungry Moose Blog. As detailed as their recipe was with all the visuals… I still managed to mess this one up. Mine came out way too runny and only managed to make half the amount :(… Though it was still delicious, I may need to invest in a better strainer (this was the part I found to be the most difficult)… or possibly a food mill.
Concord Grape Jam
makes 4 pints
3 lbs. concord grapes
3 cups sugar
2 Tbls. lemon juice
1. Skin the Grapes
2. Puree the Grape Skins
Put skins and 1 cup of sugar in the food processor and process them on high for a minute or two.
3. Cook the Concord Grape Jam
Put the pureed skins, peeled grapes, lemon juice and the remaining 2 cups of sugar in a medium pot over high heat and bring it to a boil. Stir occasionally.
Once it reaches boiling, reduce to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes, stirring frequently.
After 20 minutes, your jam will have thickened and reduced.
4. Strain the Jam
Before you start, grab a plate and put it in the freezer. You’ll need it to test the jam in a few minutes.
With a spatula, push the jam through a strainer in a large, heat-proof bowl. You should be left with seedy pulp…
5. Run the Plate Test
6. Jar your Jam!
Ladle your warm jam into clean, sterilized jars. Let them cool to room temperature, then cover them and pop them in the fridge.
Category Canning and Preserving | Tags: canning,Fall,grapes,jars,kitchen,preserving | Comments Off on Concord Grape Jam
October 3, 2011 by Scooter
This project was inspired by the Snug Mug Spoon Wall over at ReadyMade!
$$ – (Under $45)
scrap cabinet grade plywood – found in alleyway… (free)
assortment of spoons – thrift store… (under $4)
Nuts, Bolts, and Washers – price depends on size. we wanted large, so spent a bit more… (under $10)
2 36″ square steel tubing – $5.57 each… (under $12)
2 Flat Brackets – depends on size of your board. We went with 48″ brackets @ 6.51 each.. ($13)
Steel Adhesive – we went with SteelStik… (under $6)
Burlap Coffee Sack (optional) – had around the house…(free)
First we arranged the spoons and the steel bars on the board…
Now, take a hacksaw and score the spoons and the steel tubing where they will attach. Next we took SteelStik and adhered the spoons.
Set up the brackets and mark where you would like the bolts to go… We did 4 on each side between each bar.
Next, drill the holes…
We then set it up and trimmed the brackets. We had a coffee sack lying around that we thought would make for a nice cover to the board.
Last we added some mounting wire onto the back and the spoon mug wall has been created!
Category DIY Projects | Tags: coffee,DIY,kitchen,mugs,spoons,storage | Comments Off on Spoon Mug Wall