Preserving the past in jelly jars

By Jim Bailey
theyankeechef.blogspot.com
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There isn’t really anything remarkable about today’s recipes, other than that every once in a while I enjoy ā€œputtin’ up.ā€ Our grandparents wouldn’t have thought of buying premade jams, jellies or preserves, especially when homemade is so much better. So I took two of my favorite, not your run-of-the-mill, recipes for preserves to show you just how simple it is to make your own spread for the cooler months here in New England.

If you are going to put up and store either of these recipes for extended periods of time, by all means follow canning procedures, which can be found on the box of pectin you will need. Meanwhile, both of these recipes will keep for at least a month in the refrigerator.

Easy to make pineapple preserves for a summery winter treat.

Easy to make pineapple preserves for a summery winter treat.

Watermelon Preserves

1 (1.75-ounce) box fruit pectin
4 cups pureed watermelon
1/2 cup lemon or lime juice
1 cup sugar

Put watermelon into a large saucepan or pot and stir in the pectin. Bring to a boil over high heat, constantly stirring when starting to boil. Stir in the sugar and lemon or lime juice and boil for one additional minute, constantly stirring. Remove from heat, skim off any noticeable foam and let cool 30 minutes. Ladle in prepared containers, cover and let cool in refrigerator.

Pineapple Preserves

4 cups finely chopped fresh pineapple*
1 (1.75-ounce) box fruit pectin
1/2 teaspoon butter or margarine
2 cups sugar

Put pineapple into a large saucepan or pot and stir in the pectin. Add butter (this reduces foaming when cooking, which occurs with certain fruits such as pineapple) and bring to a boil over high heat, constantly stirring when it starts to boil. Stir in the sugar and continue boiling for one additional minute, constantly stirring. Remove from heat, skim off any noticeable foam and let cool 30 minutes. Ladle in prepared containers, cover and let cool in refrigerator.
*You can also use the same amount of crushed pineapple, drained well.

Yankee Chef book coverSchiffer Books of Pennsylvania has released Jim Bailey’s new book The Yankee Chef: Feel Good Food for Every Kitchen. It contains more than 550 traditional New England comfort-food recipes tweaked for today’s palates with hundreds of kitchen tips and food facts. The hardback book is 312 pages and contains 200 color images. Its ISBN is 978-0-7643-4191-5 and the cost is $34.99. The book can be ordered through Misty Valley Books, 802-875-3400.

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Filed Under: Community and Arts LifeThe Yankee Chef

About the Author: Jim Bailey is a third generation Yankee Chef, New England food historian and newspaper columnist. His first cookbook, simply titled The Yankee Chef, has been published. He welcomes all feedback, questions or comments at theyankeechef@aol.com.

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