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Category: Canning



Today I canned some whole berry cranberry sauce. I had some  Cranberry Sauce- jellied in the pantry. It is really easy to prepare and you make it using the water bath method so you do not do any pressure cooking a t all. It making jelly and preserves except you want the Cranberry Jelly thicker. The first recipe will take one and part of a second 12 oz bag. The Whole Berry Cranberry Sauce uses two 12 oz. bags. Sometimes when canning you do not get the amount in the recipe. This is usually the result of cooking the sauce beyond the minimal gel point. You can see I only got 4 canned pints. It ended up being 4 1/2 pints and I did not can the 1/2 jar.

This was not grown in my garden but someday I am going to try growing high bush cranberries. They are not a true cranberry  but are an excellent substitute for cranberries. Make sure you plant the true North American species,  Viburnum opulus var. americana because the European varieties are too bitter.


Cranberry Sauce Jellied

1 1/4 cups cranberries

1 3/4 cups water

2 cups sugar


Wash cranberries, drain. Combine cranberries and water in a saucepan. Boil until skins burst.Press mixture through a sieve or food mill. Add sugar to cranberry pulp and juice. Boil mixture almost to jelling point. Ladle hot sauce into hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch head space, Adjust two piece caps. Process 10 minutes in a boiling water canner.

Yield 2 pints


Cranberry Sauce- Whole Berry

8 cups cranberries

4 cups water

4 cups sugar

Wash cranberries, drain. Combine sugar and water in a large sauce pot. Boil 5 minutes. Add cranberries. Continue boiling without stirring until skins burst. Ladle hot sauce into hot jars. leaving 1/4 inch head space. Adjust two piece caps. Process 10 minutes in a boiling water canner

Yield: 6 pints.




How Pectins Work For Making Jams and Jellies


Reduced Sugar Strawberry Jam using Sure Jell (Pectin for low or no sugar jams and jellies)


I try to keep my diet within 21 grams of sugar per day.  To put that in perspective, a can of soda alone can have as many as 40 grams. That is twice as much as my goal. This low sugar amount is really hard for most people to do since we are used to having closer to 70 grams per day and I subsect many people ingest much more with drinks. .

Traditional jam is around 60% sugar. That make a sticky situation for those of use reducing our sugar content. You can’t use any type of pectin to make a low sugar jam and just reduce the sugar content. It does not work that way.

The best way is to change you life style and limit the usage of jam and jellies and become accustomed to the texture of no or very low sugar jams. The taste will be different since you will have a lot less sugar and it will not be as sweet but after just using these type of jellies and jams the traditional types will soon seem too sweet.


How Traditional Pectin Works:

To get the right jel consistency you must have:

Pectin: Pectin is a natural carbohydrate found in all fruit and it is most responsible for getting the gel in jams/jellies. You will find some fruits such as apples have a lot of pectin. There are others that have very little natural pectin.

Acid: Almost all fruit is high acid which is why they can be boiling bath canned. In some recipes with fruit with lower acid amounts  lemon juice is added.

Sugar: You will need a LOT of sugar with traditional pectin to get the correct radio. Do not try to reduce the sugar in a traditional recipe with traditional pectin.


How Low Sugar  Pectin Works:

These pectin products have been specially designed to make jams and jellies with less sugar.  They are labeled for making low or no sugar jelly and jams. Follow the manufacturer’s directions that come with the product. I used the Sure Jell premium Fruit Pectin to make a lower sugar Strawberry Jam. I had some problems with the fruit floating but I am hoping when opened we will be able to mix the contents.






How No Sugar Pectin Works:

These are Low Methoxyl Pectin Jams and Jellies (LMP). These pectins do not bind to the sugar but to calcium instead.  If you have a lot of calcium in your water it might become too firm.  You can try adding more juice to the mix or use filtered water lower in calcium. I am still working on using this type of pectin since I have high calicum water and it produced a jelly too thick the first time I tried. Pomona is the most well know product but there are others available.


Canning sometimes has interesting outcomes. I just canned two pints of my Chioggia Beets which are a very sweet pink skinned beet heirloom from Italy. These Beets have red and white circular rings in the interior and are normally very pretty. I was hoping canning them would keep the color but they seemed to have gotten washed out.

I am planning to make some pickled one later and hope that will make a difference but they will still make a good addition to meals.



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