You CAN can!

My mom sent me a book as a gift before she came to visit us. You can can is a fantastic canning book with about 100 water bath recipes! Pressure cookers scare the poo out of me! We made pear-cherry chutney, tomato-basil jam and pear butter. They are all delish and so easy. Time consuming, of course but worth every minute!

For example, tomato-basil jam-Prep: 30 minutes
Cook: 12 minutes
Process: 5 minutes
Makes: 5 half-pints (70 servings)


2 1/2 lbs fully ripe tomatoes (5 large red, yellow or mix)
1/4 cup bottled lemon juice
3 tbsp snipped fresh basil
1 1.75-oz package powdered fruit pectin for lower sugar recipes

1. wash tomatoes. remove skins, stem ends, cores and seeds. finely chop tomatoes. measure 3 1/2 cups. place chopped tomatoes in a 6 or 8 quart kettle or pot. heat to boiling: reduce heat. simmer covered for 10 minutes. measure 3 1/3 cups, return to kettle

2. add lemon juice and basil. combine 1/4 cup of the sugar with pectin (my mom taught me to mix the sugar and the pectin together before you add it to your mixture), heat to a full rolling boil, stirring constantly. stir in the remaining 2 3/4 cups of sugar. return mixture to a full rolling boil. boil hard for 1 minute, stirring constantly. remove from heat. quickly skim off foam with a metal spoon.

3. Immediately ladle hot jam into hot, sterilized half-pint canning jars, leaving a 1/4-inch headspace. wipe jar rims; adjust lids.

4. Process filled jars in a boiling water canner for 5 minutes (start timing when water returns to boil). remove jars from canner; cool on wire racks.

We've tried it on white meat, scones, salami and crackers... It's seriously delicious!

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