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Preserving Summer


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#301 andiesenji

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Posted 14 September 2008 - 12:24 PM

This seems to be the appropriate thread to ask this question--I have two pear trees and a lot of unripe pears that had to be picked.  I want to make pear butter out of them but wondered if they have to be ripe.  I need to use the unripe pears right away for various reasons.  Does anyone have experience with unripe pears?  I know they'll ripen eventually but I don't want to wait.

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You can make "pear honey" Pear Honey recipe - old-fashioned type
This actually turns out better if the pears are just beginning to ripen - when they are still very firm.

You can also slice and dry some of the pears - after they are partly through the drying process you can put them into simple syrup and glacé them. This is only possible with unripe pears - as soon as there is a bit of "give" when you press into them, they are too ripe.

They do have to be at least beginning to ripen to have pear butter turn out well.

I also make pickled pears from the recipe on this site.
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#302 Terrasanct

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Posted 14 September 2008 - 05:58 PM

I've never heard of the pear honey before--it looks interesting. I may try that.

#303 JaneMC

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 08:43 AM

Hi Bubble,

For the fair showings only I use the topping name. When I give out my soft spreads (the name I use). That is because I wasn't using pectin and with showings you have to use the right name or you are out. I'm in Missouri and show in 2 fairs and wanting to do more. When I lived in CA I showed there also. I do candy (both took first place, breads 1 first, and cookies 2nd and 3rd.) It's fun but never take the comments too much. Take it as a place to do better....they can be very tough.

Jane


Congratulations on the blue ribbon for your cherry jam! What fairs do you enter, Jane? State? Regional? County? When you say "toppings," do you mean jam or do you mean something else?
-Bubbles
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#304 JaneMC

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Posted 16 September 2008 - 08:48 AM

Andiesenji,

Thank you for the technique. I love all the ideas I have gotten here and will apply them! My family never did this. Well my mom didn't like to cook at all. I've been getting back to the basics as much as I can. So much to learn....but I am having fun doing it.

Jane

My favorite "method" for preserves and jams, so as to avoid the "floating-fruit problem," is to use a slotted ladle and transfer just the fruit into the jars, using the wide-mouth funnel, until the jar is full of fruit.
THEN I ladle in the syrup until the fruit is covered.
I continue until all the fruit has been jarred. Usually I have some syrup left over and that gets jarred separately.
I learned this 60 years ago when watching my grandma prepare cherry preserves, as well as peach, pear, gooseberry, huckleberry, raspberry, strawberry and etc.

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#305 Darienne

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Posted 17 September 2008 - 04:23 AM

Hello all preserving types,

Would anyone know of a good recipe for Ginger Marmelade. I think I am seguing into a 'ginger' mode.

Thanks :smile:
Darienne


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#306 JaneMC

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 08:52 AM

Hi Everyone,

Anyone started canning yet? I have! I'm also started with pressure canning for the first time this year!

Has anyone done any Drunken Spreads? I read a little about it/heard about it last year and bought 175 best James, Jellies, Marmalades by Linda J. Amendt. I sure would like a few more. Anyone?

Jane

#307 PopsicleToze

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Posted 03 July 2009 - 06:28 AM

Just started this year's goodies and I've read this entire thread for inspiration. I have 5-gallons of figs that I'm doing next that the birds were kind enough to let me have, but this week I put up tomatoes and spiced pickled peaches. The peaches have strips of fresh ginger root and cinnamon sticks with sweet onions and red bell pepper strips thrown in for good measure. The one on top is not processed but it stays good for several weeks in the refrigerator; that's the sampling jar to see when they're good to give away.

The large jar in back is leftover pickling solution. It will show up somewhere in the next few weeks maybe on pound cake or something.

Posted Image

Rhonda

#308 JaneMC

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Posted 09 July 2009 - 05:26 PM

Popscile Toze,

Sounds like you are on your way! I have cucs in the fridge that I will be doing pickles tomorrow with. Also tomatoes that I'm going to crush and can. I'm trying to move out of jams and jellies and into other things.

One day I will figure out the picture thing. I'm still having problems with the blog!

What else is everyone doing. Oh someone gave me some really interesting jars! Quart size with a basket weave on the glass. They have the 2 piece lids.

Jane

#309 KarenDW

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Posted 17 July 2009 - 11:31 AM

This morning, I noticed that the label says that the canner should not be used on a glass cooktop. I have a glass cooktop.

So, I wonder what this limitation is really about. Am I going to damage the cooktop if I use  the canner? Is this a "CYA" move on the part of the manufacturer? Can I safely ignore this restriction?

I feel like this might be a silly question, but I don't want to damage the cooktop.  Does anyone have any thoughts or experience on this??

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Some ranges have an automatic shut-off or safety shut off, which could turn off your stove if the surface becomes too hot for an extended length of time. So, probably one or two short batches of canning would be fine, but several batches, plus long-cooking jams, might not be as practical on a ceram-top range. Or so I was told by the appliance salesman.
Karen Dar Woon

#310 JaneMC

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 12:15 PM

Karen, the Presto pressurer canner works great for glass top ranges. I'm happy over that. I asked someone who would know and that is what I got and I'm real happy with it! I've done tuna in it and that took 100 minutes (which I figure will be the longest time I will be doing) and it worked great! Done other things but at 20 minutes here and 30 there I knew it would work.

Anyone doing anything? I'm in full swing and doing 2 projects (canning and baking plus everything else!). Then I'm getting ready for fairs. Lets not forget I've been working 6 days a week! Life has been crazy right now.

Any have new or older canning books they love I'm always looking for some new ones.

What I've done: tuna, green beans, tomatoes, and some jams. More to come.

Jane

#311 Rover

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Posted 25 July 2009 - 06:54 AM

I have a large and very prolific golden plum tree in my garden so I made Golden Plum Jam with Vanilla Bean & Black Pepper last year. These plums are delicate and seem to suddenly ripen all at once becoming quickly over-ripe. They aren't suitable for the kinds of pies and tarts in which Italian plums star and I've struggled to know what to do with them.

I produced a smallish batch, tasted it at the time and was quite disappointed that it didn't seem to have the oomph I was hoping for. I stashed the jars away and forgot about them.

I recently noticed those jars of jam again, was about to discard them but decided to do another taste test - it was terrific! It was a little on the tart side (my preference; I don't much care for very sugary jams) with a fresh, fruity, yet sophisticated flavour and a lovely fragrance. The pepper was very subtle - I think I might even increase it for this year's batch.

I guess it needed time to grow its flavours and mature because this jam bore no resemblance to that which I tasted on the day it was made.

Rover

#312 snowangel

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Posted 28 July 2009 - 08:24 PM

A very easy hint with extra ripe fruit. Make pie filling. Line a pie pan with foil, insert filling, fold foil over the top. When frozen, just remove from the pie pan.

When you need a fruit pie (baked), make pie crust. insert the frozen pie filling (after peeling the foil off), insert firozen filling into crust, top with crust (or not) and bake, allowing an extra 10 minutes or so to normal baking time.

This works wonders, and you don't have to stand over a hot stove, processing fruit into jars on a hot day.

A peach pie in January...priceless.
Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

#313 Darienne

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Posted 29 July 2009 - 04:46 AM

A very easy hint with extra ripe fruit.  Make pie filling.  Line a pie pan with foil, insert filling, fold foil over the top.  When frozen, just remove from the pie pan.

When you need a fruit pie (baked), make pie crust. insert the frozen pie filling (after peeling the foil off), insert firozen filling into crust, top with crust (or not) and bake, allowing an extra 10 minutes or so to normal baking time.

This works wonders, and you don't have to stand over a hot stove, processing fruit into jars on a hot day.

A peach pie in January...priceless.

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Now that is brilliant!!!! :wub:
Darienne


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#314 deensiebat

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Posted 04 August 2009 - 09:24 PM

Some friends and I had a preserving party a few weeks ago, and turned 80 lbs of Robada apricots from this:

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to this:

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We had the stove going for about 10 hours. Whew! Details on bulk canning extravaganza here.

#315 JaneMC

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Posted 11 August 2009 - 07:26 AM

Now those are some beautiful jars you have!

Is there anyone else canning? I've read that this is what they call "in".

I've made hot dilly pickles, tons of tomatoes, green beans, tuna, apricot spead, peach butter, blueberry jam, and so many more. Also have entered in a few contasts and won! Did a fair here and got best of show for my blueberry jam. My goal is to can all year. I do have a pressure canner so it can be done. I have chili and stocks that I want to do!

Well I have a lot to do and working 6 days a week right now is really getting in the way of things.

Jane

#316 vinelady

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Posted 19 August 2009 - 11:45 AM

I have been making BBQ sauce, pickled carrot and zucchini strips, carrot and zuc relish, onion relish, and pickled jalapenos this week. earlier this year I did rhubarb-ginger preserves, blueberry rhubarb and raspberry jam. Off to pick plums and blackberries.

#317 JaneMC

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Posted 19 August 2009 - 08:25 PM

Nice work Vinelady! I've canned chili, peach pie filling, tomatoes this week. I'm tried. I'm still working a lot also.

I did get "Best of Show" at our fair. I was floored! It was my blueberry jam. My strawberry jelly took first.

Still have a lot more that I'm wanting to do. My goal is to can something every month of the year. I can do it, I have a pressure canner.

Have about 300 jars/cans done.

Jane

#318 deensiebat

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Posted 24 August 2009 - 08:07 AM

Canned plums in syrup:

Posted Image

(although I kept jokingly telling people that they're pickled eggs). The skins all burst, despite being pierced multiple times -- I guess they were just pretty thin-skinned (it was a backyard tree of unknown variety). Can't wait to taste them after they've sat in the syrup for a few months...

#319 CaliPoutine

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Posted 24 August 2009 - 01:39 PM

A very easy hint with extra ripe fruit.  Make pie filling.  Line a pie pan with foil, insert filling, fold foil over the top.  When frozen, just remove from the pie pan.

When you need a fruit pie (baked), make pie crust. insert the frozen pie filling (after peeling the foil off), insert firozen filling into crust, top with crust (or not) and bake, allowing an extra 10 minutes or so to normal baking time.

This works wonders, and you don't have to stand over a hot stove, processing fruit into jars on a hot day.

A peach pie in January...priceless.

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Now that is brilliant!!!! :wub:

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I did this last year. Amazing!!

#320 PopsicleToze

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Posted 02 September 2011 - 04:26 AM

Muscadines are wild grapes that grow in the Southeastern US. A friend gave me 25 lbs of them. It takes about 4 lbs to make 5 cups of jelly stock, which is bumped up to 8 cups of actual jelly after sugar is added.

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The skin is really tough, and it has to be separated from the pulp before cooking. Some people cut them in half; some people hand-squeeze every one. That's very time-consuming. I smash them with the bottom of a heavy jar.

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After they are smashed, they are cooked until the skins are softened, then they are strained overnight being careful not to squeeze them or the jelly will be cloudy.

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After the jelly stock strains overnight in a cool place, strain it again to remove the tartaric acid crystals before making the jelly.

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There is only 8 cups liquid in the pot, but I used an 8-qt pot because it bubbles up.

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And jelly :biggrin:

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#321 judiu

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Posted 02 September 2011 - 11:03 AM

Ohhhh, pretty! Thanks, Popsicle Toze! Shame there's not something like a cherry pitter to do the labor for you. Maybe you could invent something? :cool:
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#322 Genkinaonna

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Posted 02 September 2011 - 11:37 AM

Popsicle-Wow that stuff is GORGEOUS! I'm in preservation mode right now too, but it's becoming a little bit of an obsession. Normal people don't buy 15 lbs of sour cherries and make jam in a friend's kitchen when they're on vacation! :laugh:


What else is everyone making this year?
If you ate pasta and antipasto, would you still be hungry? ~Author Unknown

#323 janeer

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Posted 02 September 2011 - 04:10 PM

Muscadines are wild grapes that grow in the Southeastern US. A friend gave me 25 lbs of them. It takes about 4 lbs to make 5 cups of jelly stock, which is bumped up to 8 cups of actual jelly after sugar is added.


this reminded me of last year's adventure with muscadines--see here. I was so enamored of leaving the cute little green blobs in the purple syrup that i decided not to strain it (i.e., to leave the fruits whole, seeds and all). Big mistake, I later decided. Was able to strain some, but tons of waste, and threw a lot of it out.

#324 PopsicleToze

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Posted 03 September 2011 - 10:09 AM

Judiu, Thank you! I wish someone would invent something to do it, but I doubt I could do it. I'd sure buy one, though... if anyone out there has any ideas.

Genkinaonna, I know about the obsession! Sounds like a perfect way to spend the day to me. Do you still have any pictures of it? Would love to see it. It sounds incredible.

Janer, :laugh: Those seeds are dreadful. Did you cry when you threw it out?

#325 PopsicleToze

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Posted 03 September 2011 - 10:40 AM

Dreadful weather today. I'm not leaving the house, so I'm glad I had already planned to can this weekend. Today we have Miss Irene's Sweet and Sour Pickles from Saveur Cooks Authentic American.

Here is the recipe.

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The handwritten "4" on the page is a rating system. When I first get a new cookbook I'm excited about, I can't cook everything at once, so I read every recipe and rate them. A "4" is at the top of the list and means "must make this." Note that there is no time limit. I have had that cookbook at least 10 years, and this is the 1st time I am making that recipe, but I've looked at it a lot over the years! :wink:

I found some dill and Persian cucumbers a few days ago. I had never even heard of Persian cucumbers before, but they looked like they would make really good pickles.

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Here are the halved cucumbers after they had brined 24 hours.

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Added cast of characters...

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I tried to follow the simple recipe, but it just cried out for a pop of red color. I added a Thai chili to every jar.

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I'm pretty happy with them.

#326 heidih

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Posted 03 September 2011 - 12:35 PM

Beautiful jars Rhonda. I find the Persian cukes have just a bit less snap than the Kirby. The dill is so lush. How long should they sit before sampling?

#327 PopsicleToze

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Posted 03 September 2011 - 06:52 PM

Heidi, I don't know. The recipe didn't state how long they should sit before eating. I googled, and some sites say they're good in about a week. I'm going to give 2 weeks for good measure, and then I'll open them.

#328 PopsicleToze

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Posted 04 September 2011 - 07:22 PM

I find the Persian cukes have just a bit less snap than the Kirby.


And that might be a tad understated... I'm so heart-broken. Look at my little shriveled up pickles today. :sad: I can't imagine how bad they will look in a few weeks. So totally my fault for being ignorant and using the Persians.

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The only pickles I've ever done were bread and butter pickles and wanted to branch out this year. That might not successfully happen.

Does anyone have a tried and true dill pickle recipe they would be willing to share? I was hoping for something with a little bite and crunch to it.