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Author Topic: Getting jelly/jam to gell  (Read 364 times)

Offline GSF

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Getting jelly/jam to gell
« on: August 02, 2016, 08:58:50 AM »
We do a lot of pressure canning and hot water bath canning. We occasionally run across a problem with hot water bath canning some fruit. In this case our grapes didn't gel. We always get the Ball Blue book out along with some notes. We added additional sure gel to it. I think we ended up with about 8 half pint jars.

I'm wondering if we used the ol timey press?/grinder? that allowed some pulp to filter in, would that help? Any thoughts/suggestions?
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Offline iddee

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Re: Getting jelly/jam to gell
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2016, 10:21:16 AM »
I have found the smaller diameter pans will make it jell better than the larger diameter pans. If the jelly is 3 inches deep, it jells easily. If 2 inches deep, it remains as syrup. I think the surface heat escape plays a part in the max temp it achieves.
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Offline Michael Bush

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Re: Getting jelly/jam to gell
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2016, 10:43:55 AM »
Jelling does seem to be a tricky matter.  Cooking longer, more sugar, less water, more pectin, even the acidity of the fruit seems to all contribute to gelling.  The good thing, though, is that when it doesn't gel, it makes awesome pancake syrup...  Since I like my jelly/jam tart it took a lot of experimenting to get things to gel with less sugar.
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Offline divemaster1963

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Re: Getting jelly/jam to gell
« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2016, 12:35:29 PM »
I have not had that problem with my jams and jellies yet. I only use the ball pectin. I have heard of problems with sure gel pectin. I make no sugar jams for my sister-n-law and low sugar and low honey jams. mostly blackberry, red plum and golden plum. I make seedless jams. I use a juicer to remove the seeds of blackberries so I do get bits of skin in the pulp. that may be adding natural pectin. I only make 6-8 jars at time. making to much at once will make it harder to get it to set.

maybe I'm just been lucky with jams.

john

Offline Michael Bush

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Re: Getting jelly/jam to gell
« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2016, 11:40:47 AM »
>maybe I'm just been lucky with jams.

Or unlucky...  When I was a kid my mom messed up a big batch of strawberry jam so we ended up using it as pancake syrup.  I still dream about that pancake syrup.  I kept hoping she'd mess up another batch...
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Offline Rurification

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Re: Getting jelly/jam to gell
« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2016, 02:11:21 PM »
Sure-jell changed their formulation not too long ago and became much less reliable.   I much prefer Dutch Gel All Natural Lite, which I find in bulk at my local Amish store.   I use 1 tablespoon of pectin per cup of fruit and have consistent results, up to 8 cups of fruit.   I use a big stockpot with a wide bottom and let it boil at a full rolling boil for at least a minute.

I'm with Michael on the syrup thing.   Our 'failures' are often family legends.   I've got some Elaeagnus Orange Ginger stuff in the cupboard now that never did set and it is to die for on .... everything.   [Elaeagnus are also called Autumn Olive].
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Offline divemaster1963

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Re: Getting jelly/jam to gell
« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2016, 05:10:58 PM »
You both are right. There is no real failure. Just other results. All are great. I do love syrups. But if I'm looking for jam I win. If I get syrup. The neighbor kids win with homemade ice cream social with better than store bought toppings. One parent gets raw milk and makes fresh wiped cream toppings to.

John

 

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