How to Can and Process Grape Jelly
As promised in my previous post on Making Grape Jelly – First Get the Juice I am continuing on with the second phase of making grape jelly by letting you know How to Can and Process Grape Jelly. This is where the “magic” begins. Now as I stated before in the first post on making grape jelly this is not really a difficult canning project. You just need to be aware that the steps you need to take to complete the grape jelly making procedures does take up a bit of time and once you start you need to finish. So just make sure that you set enough time out of your busy schedule for this part too.
Personally I like to set up canning dates with friends and loved ones to help me. Not that I can’t complete my home canning activities by myself and you could too. It is just I love the treasured time spent with others who enjoy canning and preserving fresh food as much as I do. We share tales of past gardening and canning events and I usually pick up a few more tips and tricks to help bolster my ever eager mind of learning canning and preserving from those who have much more experience in the methods of home canning than I do.
Usually I set aside time from morning until early afternoon to complete which ever home canning venture I attempt and thought it best to let you know the range of time you would need to commit to. On this occasion the grape jelly making process has been broken into two sessions. The nice thing about getting the juice first meant that making the grape jelly gave me a chance to visit with these folks twice and the juice is all ready to go for the canning and processing part of making grape jelly. So without further ado, I will share with you my strategies for the next steps in making grape jelly.
How to Can and Process Grape Jelly
Now those of you that have been following this blog know that I am a big fan of either the freezing techniques of home canning or the water bath approach to canning and preserving. In this instance for canning and processing grape jelly I will be using the water bath canning method because it works so well for making jellies. You can find out more about this way of canning by following that link where I go into more detail on boiling water bath type of home canning.
Today I will be sharing with you the steps you need to take to make grape jelly using regular powdered fruit pectin mixed with sugar and the juice that you have rendered from the grapes described in the previous post. The reason I choose using the regular powered fruit pectin is that it is the jelly prepared this way is a bit easier and less time consuming than the long boil recipes for making grape jelly. The fresh taste and beautiful color of processing your grape jelly in this manner cannot be denied as you will soon find out.
Steps to Canning and Processing Grape Jelly
Before I go into the actual steps I need to emphasize a few of crucial points in order for your grape jelly to turn out right:
- First it is very important not to alter the quantity of ingredients to be included in your grape jelly.
- Secondly it is essential that you whisk the powdered pectin into the grape juice until it is very well mixed.
- Thirdly the juice-pectin mixture must be brought to a boil with the pectin fully dissolved before adding the sugar to the mixture.
Recipe for Making Grape Jelly
The following recipe will yield about seven 8 ounce jars (half-pint):
- 5 cups Grape Juice for Jelly – I let the juice thaw that I had rendered from my previous session. I had bagged the juice into the 5 cups needed for one batch of jelly.
- 1 package (1.75 oz.) of powdered fruit pectin – I prefer to use the brand Sure Jell as it has worked well for me in previous jelly making projects but you may have your own preference.
- 6 cups of granulated sugar - I have only tried this recipe with real sugar. For those of you that may want to use sugar substitutes you will have to consult the recommended amount of substitute for this recipe.
- Prepare canner, jars and lids. See this post for more detailed information – Water Bath Canning Procedures
- Put Grape Juice in a large, deep stainless steel sauce pan. Whisk in pectin until thoroughly dissolved. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring frequently. Add sugar all at once after making sure that the pectin is completely dissolved and bring back to a full rolling boil, stirring constantly. Continue stirring during this hard boil for 1 minute. Remove from heat and quickly skim off the foam.
- Pour the hot jelly into hot jars quickly, leaving ¼ inch headspace. Wipe the rim of the jar and the threads if any spilled with a damp cloth or paper towel. Center lid on the jar. Screw the band down on the jar until resistance is met, then increase to a finger-tight grip.
- Place jars in the canner making sure they are completely covered with water. Bring to a boil and process for 10 minutes. Take the canner off the heat. Remove the canner lid. Wait 5 minutes then remove the jars to let them cool on a dish towel placed on your counter top.
- You will probably begin to hear a popping sound as the jars begin to cool off. This is a good sign as this means that the jars are completing the sealing process. Let the jars sit in the same position overnight. Check the next day to make sure that all of the lids have been sealed. Wipe any residue with a damp cloth or paper towel. Store the grape jelly in a dark, cool dry place.
There you have it! You have just completed your first try at making grape jelly. Now that wasn’t so hard was it? Your family will surely be pleased with your attempts at this yummy treat. Giving credit where credit is due, I have to let you know that this recipe is in my new favorite canning book – the Ball Complete Book Of Home Preserving. They have 400 recipes in this book and I haven’t found one yet that isn’t as easy as this one. Why don’t you find out for yourself and let me know what you think?
I hope you enjoyed this second part of my series on making grape jelly by learning How to Can and Process Grape Jelly. I look forward to sharing other fun home canning activities with you in future posts. Until then I wish you well in your own canning ventures.