Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Making Jam: Watermelon Jelly

The theme for this month's tigress can jam was curcubits, which includes cucumbers, squash and melons. I couldn't decide between canning pickles or Watermelon Jelly so I decided to make both. I had a watermelon that was ripening very quickly so this seemed like a good use for it.  I submitted the pickles for the can jam, but I decided to continue the theme with this jelly.  I made this jelly during  Can-a-Rama 2010 this past weekend.  I had lot's of fun making jams and pickling.

This is a zesty watermelon jelly.  It calls for lemongrass which I didn't have so I left that ingredient out. 

Zesty Watermelon
Makes: about five 8-ounce jars
Recipe from Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving

6 cups chopped watermelon, rind removed
1/2 cup white balsamic, white wine or apple cider vinegar (I used white wine vinegar)
4 tbsp lemon juice
5 cups granulated sugar
1 stem lemongrass, chopped (I omitted this ingredient because I didn't have any)
2 pouches (each 3 oz/85 ml) liquid pectin

In a large stainless steel saucepan, crush watermelon with a potato masher.  Cover and heat gently over medium-low heat for 5 minutes.  Remove from heat and crush thoroughly.

Transfer to a dampened jelly bag or a strainer lined with several layers of dampened cheesecloth set over a deep bowl.  Let drip, undisturbed, for 2 hours.

Measure 2 cups watermelon juice.  If you do not have the required amount, crush more watermelon or add up to 1/4 cup unsweetened white grape juice.

In the meantime, prepare canner, jars and lids. For detailed instructions on water-bath canning, please refer to the instructions on this site: National Center for Home Preservation.

Transfer watermelon juice to a clean large, deep stainless steel saucepan.  Stir in the vinegar, lemon juice, sugar and lemongrass.

Over high heat, stirring constantly, bring to a full rolling boil that cannot be stirred down.

Stir in pectin.  I put the open liquid pectin pouch in a cup for easy access. 

Boil hard, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.

Remove from heat and quickly skim off foam.

Quickly pour hot jelly into hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace.  Wipe rim.  Center lid on jar.

Screw band down until resistance is met, then increase to fingertip-tight.

Place jars in canner, ensuring they are completely covered with water.  Bring to a boil and process 10 minutes. If you live in a higher altitude or need more detailed instructions on water-bath canning, please refer to the instructions on this site: National Center for Home Preservation.

Remove canner lid.  Wait 5 minutes, then remove jars, cool and store.  Then give some away.  No fair keeping all this deliciousness for yourself. 

Thanks for joining me in the bread-baking blog.  Remember, bread goes really well with jams and jellies.

Happy Canning and Baking!

Here are some of the references I use in my canning adventures. You might enjoy them as well:

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