Friday, June 8, 2012

What do you do when your jelly doesn't jell?


What do you do when your jelly doesn't gel? First of all, wait 2 weeks. I've had jelly mysteriously gel overnight, on that 13th or 14th day. I have no idea why, at that moment, it gelled, but it did. So, wait 2 weeks. If after 2 weeks it still has not gelled, then you can remake it, following these instructions from Bernardin (a canning supply co. in Canada).




"How to Remake cooked jam/jelly using powdered fruit pectin

1) Measure unset jam/jelly to be remade.
2) For each 1 cup (250 ml) product, measure: 

  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) granulated sugar,
  • 1 tbsp (15 ml) water and
  • 1  tsp (7 ml) BERNARDIN® Fruit Pectin.
3) In a large, deep stainless steel saucepan, whisk fruit pectin into water. Stirring constantly to prevent scorching, bring to a boil. Stir in the measured jam and sugar.
4) Stirring constantly over high heat, bring to a full rolling boil; boil hard 30 seconds. Remove from heat; skim foam, if necessary.
5) Ladle into hot sterilized jars, leaving 1/4 inch (0.5 cm) headspace. Remove air bubbles. Wipe jar rim removing any stickiness. Centre new SNAP LIDS® on jars; apply screw bands securely until fingertip tight. Heat process 10 minutes in boiling water canner.


How to Remake cooked jam/jelly using liquid pectin

1) Measure unset product and place in a large, deep stainless steel saucepan.
2) For each 1 cup (250 ml) unset product, measure and set aside:
  • 3 tbsp (45 ml) granulated sugar,
  • 1 tsp (7 ml) lemon juice
  • 1 tsp (7 ml) BERNARDIN® Liquid Pectin
3) Stirring constantly over high heat, bring product to a boil. Add sugar, lemon juice and liquid pectin.
4) Stirring constantly, return mixture to a full rolling boil; boil hard 1 minute. Remove from heat; skim foam, if necessary.
5) Ladle into hot sterilized jars, leaving 1/4 inch (0.5 cm) headspace. Remove air bubbles. Wipe jar rim removing any stickiness. Centre new SNAP LID® on jar; apply screw band securely until fingertip tight. Process 10 minutes in boiling water canner."



You've probably already deduced that you can use Ball, M.P.C., Sure-Jell, or any other brand of pectin.  Just make sure, that if using a powdered pectin, use the recipe for the remake with powdered. And for a liquid pectin, use the recipe for the remake with liquid.

It's important to follow these instructions precisely, measuring and mixing as stated, boil hard for the alloted time, sterilize your jars again and process for 10 minutes following sealing.

I made a batch of crabapple-red currant jelly a little over 2 weeks ago, using fruit juice that I'd extracted and kept frozen since last summer.  I'm not sure if I overcooked the juice and killed off the pectin or had too large an amount of water in proportion to the fruit when extracting the juice. But in any case, the jelly didn't gel and needed recooking.

So, following these instructions, I remade the jelly with great success. I can see the gelling take place as the jars cool. Happy family at breakfast once again!

Just curious, what do you do with the foamy stuff from making jam or jelly? Most of the time, I use it on PBJ sandwiches. Sometimes I add it to the next fruit cobbler, crisp, or smoothie that I make. And with the pot that I cooked the jelly in, before washing it out, I either make jam milk for my kids (stir milk into the pot, scraping down the sides, to flavor the milk), or add water and swirl around to add to my current pot of hot or iced tea, or as in today, I made rhubarb sauce right in the pot, figuring the jelly left on the sides of the pot would add some flavor and sweetness. When I do these things I feel smugly thrifty. I know. . . I'm weird.

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