Anyway, I FINALLY attempted a pin and I sorta cheated. I pinned it AFTER I picked grapes with my family ... lol. I had to figure out what to do with the 4 pounds of grapes my son and husband picked since when I tried the purple concord grape I almost spit it out. (of course I didn't because I didn't want my son not liking the grapes just because I didn't -- there's something about that tough outside skin and the mushy inside. Blah).
Millstone Creek Orchards. We picked apples a year or two ago here and loved it ... so we came back for grapes and more apples ... we wanted peaches too, but they were already picked over. Oh well, next year!
Four pounds of grapes, can you believe it?! I was so pumped to just eat them, but I've never had concord grapes before and well, I am not a fan of just popping them in my mouth and eating them. So, we washed them, I pinned a simple recipe from Chef In You (Pinned HERE) and we made delicious grape jam! And here's how we did it:
Basic InformationPrep Time: Under 30 minCook Time: 30 min to 1 hour
- 4 lbs ripe Concord Grapes
- 4 cups Sugar
1) First we washed the grapes in cold water in a strainer.
2) We then had to squeeze all the insides out of the skin. Pretty gross visual ... son said it looked like alien brains ... I say they looked like boogers ... either way, it wasn't a pretty visual. But, it had to be done.
4) In about 30 minutes (me gagging and my son complaining it was boring) all 4 pounds of grapes were skin less and into a huge pot. Next, you need to bring the skinless grapes to a boil. You want them dissolved and REALLY mushy -- I mean, more mushy than ever!
7) Bring to a boil, stir occasionally.
You want to warm the sugar in the oven at 150 degrees for like ... 4 minutes, just enough to warm it. I put it on a cookie sheet and placed in oven. Pull out sugar from oven and in cups, slowly stir in the sugar as the grapes boil (should be a "rolling boil").
"Keep a plate in the freezer and remove it when I want to test. I then pour a small amount of the boiling jelly/jam on this plate and let it sit in the fridge for few seconds. If the mixture gels /mounds and wrinkles when you push it with your finger, it's done. If runny and it does not have a body to it, then continue to cook the jam for few more minutes until it clears the nudge test."It took me about 40-45 minutes for my jam to be ready. I think it could'av been done earlier but I wanted to make sure those skins were mostly dissolved! LOL
10) Now comes the part I was a little nervous about ... the canning process. I've never canned before but guess what, Chef In You has an awesome canning blog about it as well! Look HERE. (Scroll to the bottom for the process).
11) Once the jars are full, place lid on top and flip it upside down. I dunno why ... I just follow the directions. (I found that when I flipped them, the jar wasn't all the way full. I dunno how to fix that ... You guys have suggestions?)
13) VERY carefully pull out the jars after about 5-7 minutes. Don't leave in too long or your jam will become soupy ... but leave in long enough so that the lids seal. I just left in for 5 minutes and made sure the lids didn't pop when pushed down. I used an opened jar lid to feel the difference. I also used a rubber, clapper looking oven mitt to grab the jars out of the water. I tried thongs ... but that was a disaster waiting to happen. I placed on a cookie cooler for about 3 hours to set.
14) I placed one in the fridge and the others in my pantry. The web site says they should last 4-6 months if sealed correctly ... but I don't see me going through that much jam. The neighbors may be getting nice homemade concord grape jam for Christmas this year ;-)
This recipe only has two ingredients, but wow! This jam is awesome! It's nice and sweet and *gasp* my son actually enjoys eating it (he's not a jelly/jam person).
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