Concord Grape Jelly
When I discovered that Concord grapes are native to Ontario, I decided that I had to add them to my edible landscape. I also wanted to add a privacy lattice in a corner of my yard. So, I trained three vines to grow up 10 feet, and within three years, I was picking grapes. Each year I get about 40 lbs of grapes out of these vines, which means my family gets to enjoy grape jelly and grape juice from organically grown grapes all winter long.
YIELD : 6-250 ml jars
WATER BATH PROCESSING TIME: 10 minutes for altitudes of 1000 feet or below. Adjust processing time for other altitudes.
- 16-litre stainless steel pot
- 12-litre stainless steel pot
- canning pot
- wire basket or tray for the bottom of the canning pot
- jar lift
- magnetic wand for lid placement
- 6-250 ml sterilized jars with lids and rings
- large fine mesh strainer
- 10 cups Concord grapes removed from stems and then rinsed (about 1½ cups of these should be under ripe or even green; the under ripe grapes are higher in pectin, and this ensures that your jelly will set properly).
- 3 cups water
- 3 tbsp lemon juice bottled
- 5 cups sugar final amount of sugar ratio will be ¾ cup sugar to every 1 cup of grape juice
The first day:
- To the 16-litre stainless steel heavy bottomed pot, add the rinsed grapes and the 3 cups of water. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook on high for 3 minutes. Turn the heat down to low and simmer with the lid ajar for an additional 30 minutes. Watch carefully and stir down frequently. The mixture may boil over if not stirred down frequently.
- Line the large strainer with dampened cheesecloth and set over a large pot. Pour the cooked grapes into the strainer and let drip for at least 45 minutes.
- Let cool and then pour the juice into a tall glass pitcher. Cover with cellophane and put in the fridge overnight.
- Note: It is important to refrigerate the grape juice overnight because otherwise you may end up with crystals in your jelly.
The second day:
- Line the strainer with dampened cheesecloth and ladle the grape juice into the the strainer. Watch for crystals and sediment at the bottom and sides of the container. Do not ladle the juice that has crystals into the strainer. Measure the juice.
- Preheat the oven to 225°F.
- Measure out ¾ cup sugar for every cup of prepared grape juice. Put the sugar on a rimmed baking tray and put it in the oven to warm for 10 minutes.
- In the meantime, to the 12-litre stainless steel pot, add the strained grape juice and lemon juice and bring to a boil. (The juice will most likely start boiling when your sugar is done being warmed for 10 minutes.)
- Add the warmed sugar to the boiling grape juice. Bring the mixture back up to a boil and boil on high heat for 10 minutes or until the gel point has been reached. To determine if your jelly has reached the gel point you can use a candy thermometer clipped to the side of your pan. When the thermometer reaches 220°F, your jelly should be ready to can. I like to just use a stainless steel spoon to determine if my jelly is ready. I run the spoon through the hot liquid and then turn the stainless steel spoon on its side. When the jelly forms droplets on the spoon edge, the jelly is done.
- Skim off any foam.
- Working quickly, ladle the jelly into sterilized jars leaving ¼" headspace. Top each jar with a washed and briefly warmed snap lid. (I put the snap lid in boiling hot water for 30 seconds, this softens the seal.) Add the sterilized ring and tighten to finger tip tightness. Process using the boiling water method in a canning pot for 10 minutes.
- Remove the jars and cool on a board or metal rack. Don't disturb for 24 hours.
- Remove the rings and inspect the jars. If some of the jelly has leaked out onto the jars, wipe them clean with a soapy cloth. Store the jelly without the rings on in a dark cool place for up to a year.
- Store jars that don't seal in the fridge and use immediately.
Serving: 1tbspCalories: 57kcalCarbohydrates: 15gProtein: 1gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 1mgPotassium: 48mgFiber: 1gSugar: 14gVitamin A: 16IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 3mgIron: 1mg
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