Sunday, September 13, 2009

Mosaic Monday: Jammin'

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!

Cherry Jam
adapted from a SURE-Jell recipe
Printable 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
Printable Recipe

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
Printable Recipe

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.


  1. Great mosaic and thanks for the recipes. Sharon

  2. Cool mosaic - quite the Suzy Homemaker with all those jams. I didn;t know you made your own vanilla...I bet you use alot of it!! :)

  3. Wow, you really do have Thyme to cook. Hahaha. Your mosaic is great and the recipes sound divine.

  4. Oh, my mouth is watering! I LOVE homemade jam, but have never tried to make it myself... Thanks so much for sharing your talents at Mosaic Monday. :)

  5. Love your mosaic!
    Years ago I used to make jams and jellies all the time. Your recipes sound wonderful and you can bet that I definitely will be trying them! There is nothing better in the dead of winter than to open up a jar of jam and be reminded that spring and summer are just around the corner!
    I will also be making a stop at the liqour store as well! Love the homemade vanilla extract!
    Thanks for stopping by!

  6. Your homemade preserves sound amazing! ~Jeanne

  7. Good for you for making jam. Bing cherries never last long enough in this house.

  8. Carol, you are really starting to make me jealous with all your wonderful jams :-) I've wanted to make the vanilla extract. Thanks for sharing!

  9. Wonderful recipes - especially the vanilla. I haven't done any "preserving" for a few years. Good mosaic.


  10. I keep saying I'm going to try making jam and I still haven't done it! I guess it's because I know I'd be the only one eating it. I love the sound of the raspberry and peach jam - oh my!

  11. You mean to tell me I've been having oatmeal for breakfast, everyday for the last 23 years, and you never bothered to mention the cherry jam topping?
    Well, now that you've posted the recipe, I suppose I should start to get over it. But this may take some time.

    Great mosaic, and recipes, my friend.

  12. Love those cute little jam jars! It's been quite a while since I've engaged in this activity, but I do enjoy sharing the fruits of my labor when I do. Tasty recipes and wonderful mosaics. Thanks for your visit to Small Reflections. I'm playing catch up this morning after a way too busy Monday!
    Hugs and blessings,

  13. What a fun mosaic, Carol. I love seeing the little jars all lined up filled with your tasty jam. I'd imagine that's there's a real since of accomplishment seeing and tasting the end results of your work.

  14. You are always good from some great canning recipes. I'd love to try the cherry jam..I've been looking for a cherry pitter locally this summer. You'd think I'd have come across one given the amount of cherries grown here. I'll have to break down and buy one offline I guess.

  15. Your jams sound wonderful! I wish we lived closer so we could have a jam session...making jams and laughing all day long...couple shots of your vanilla and we might be laughing half the night away too :)


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