I'm joining Mary at Little Red House for another fun Mosaic Monday. Please stop by Mary's house for some really fabulous mosaics!
I haven't made homemade preserves in some time but it's definitely time to start again. One of my favorites is Bing Cherry Jam. Almost hot cereal weather here and my favorite is a bowl of steaming Irish Oatmeal with a tablespoon or two of Bing Cherry Jam!
I've never used pectin or sure-jell, I prefer just the fruit. I cook it down a little longer and it usually gels and when it doesn't, it becomes a sauce! The vanilla extract is really easy to make and if you keep topping it off you have it for some time. I have mine a few years already and I just keep adding vodka and vanilla beans. You can use the beans as well, they don't dry out this way!
adapted from a SURE-Jell recipe
Yields about 6 (1-cup) jars
4 cups prepared fruit (about 3 lb. fully ripe sweet cherries)
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
4 cups sugar, measured into separate bowl
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
Bring boiling-water canner, half full with water, to simmer. Wash jars and screw bands in hot soapy water; rinse with warm water. Pour boiling water over flat lids in saucepan off the heat. Let stand in hot water until ready to use. Drain jars well before filling.
Stem and pit the cherries. Or do what I do and use pitted frozen ones! Finely chop or grind fruit. Measure 4 cups of the prepared cherries into 6- or 8-qt. pot. Stir in the lemon juice.
Bring to a boil, cook, uncovered 20 to 25 minutes or until a candy thermometer registers 221F, stirring often. Skim off foam with metal spoon. Remove from heat, stir in almond extract.
Ladle immediately into prepared jars, filling to within 1/8 inch of tops. Wipe jar rims and threads. Cover with two-piece lids. Screw bands tightly. Place jars on elevated rack in canner. Lower rack into canner. (Water must cover jars by 1 to 2 inches. Add boiling water, if necessary.) Cover; bring water to gentle boil. Process 10 min. Remove jars and place upright on a towel to cool completely. After jars cool, check seals by pressing middles of lids with finger. (If lids spring back, lids are not sealed and refrigeration is necessary.)
Raspberry, Peach and Frangelico Jam
Source: Annie and LPinkmountain @ Harvest Forum, CF
2 cups raspberries (original recipe had blueberries)
1 cup sugar
2 peaches, peeled and diced
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
2 tablespoons Frangelico
Put all ingredients in a pan except Frangelico. Cook on high until it boils, then simmer 25 minutes or until thick. Add Frangelico, cook 5 more minutes, ladle into jars, leave 1/4 inch headspace in jars. Process in boiling water bath for 10 minutes to seal.
Homemade Vanilla Extract
source: Martha Stewart.com
Makes 1 cup
2 vanilla beans, split lengthwise
1 cup unflavored vodka
Place vanilla beans in a clean jar with lid. Pour vodka over beans, and place lid on jar. Allow to sit in a cool dark place for 3 to 5 months, shaking jar occasionally. Keep topping off the jar with more vodka and add more beans to have a continued supply.