Jamming.

While I might be more known to pickle everything in sight, I do tend to make a batch of jam here & there upon occasion.  Jam took me quite some time to really master – somehow I was able to teach others how to do it without ever actually being successful at it myself.  I know, go figure.  The people that live in my house, scarred by years of bad jam, prefer to not eat the jam I make.  One of them requests I purchase large tubs of just plain, grape jelly that the act of making a pb& j doesn’t use half a jar.  The other has decided she’s only going to eat Daniel’s jam and when I get sneaky and reuse his jars, keeping the label and filling it with my own, she knows.

This means that when I make jam, I can make what I like to eat, in whatever quantities I like, because chances are, I’m the only one eating it.

DSCN3636

I love fresh cantaloupe.  There is no better summer breakfast than a big bowl of melon and yogurt.  It’s one of those things that’s hard to put into a jar and preserve it for the winter.  Or so I thought.

I came across a recipe for Cantaloupe Jam with Vanilla in the Food in Jars Cookbook.  I was intrigued, but hesitant, given my history of bad jam.  But I had to try it.

DSCN3640While it’s not exactly the same as eating a fresh melon, it did get me through last winter just fine, spread on my morning toast.  I whipped up a batch this weekend, tweaking the recipe just a bit, taking the vanilla out.  The secret to getting it to set is pectin – this may actually be the only jam I make that I use pectin.  The yield was four 4 oz. jars – just enough to share a jar and keep the rest for myself.

Cantaloupe Jam

1 medium sized melon, chopped & peeled.

1 cup sugar

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 (3 ounce) packet of pectin

Combine cantaloupe & sugar in a non reactive pot.  Bring to a boil over high heat and simmer until the melon easily falls apart (about 10 minutes or so).  Add lemon juice & pectin and return to a boil.  Cook for another 3 to 4 minutes until thickened. Ladle into jars and process in a water bath canner for 10 minutes.

10 thoughts on “Jamming.

  1. Cassi says:

    That is very tempting to try. Although I’d have to drag my water-bath canner up from the basement, and I’m not sure I have the energy for that part 🙂

  2. suzicate says:

    I’ve never heard of cantelope jam! You’re introducing me to all kinds of jar items this summer! Have you ever made freezer jam? It is so simple, even I can do it!

  3. Cha Cha says:

    I rather love the idea of being scarred by bad jam … like jars of bad jam run in gangs, cutting innocents on the street.

    I’m not a huge jam fan, but perhaps I should reconsider …

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