I'm obsessed with canning. I admit it. For the Putting Up Event I made the most unusual Watermelon Rind Preserves. I was rather surprised that most of my commenter's had not heard of this specialty. But that's whats blogging is for, to learn new things. This time I wanted to do something a little sweeter and more traditional. I was worried that I would need massive quantities to make fruit preserves. Actually you don't need so much and its recommended you make small batches. I purchased about 8 apricots and a pound of cherries. I envisioned these two together in a yummy preserve. As I prepped and stoned the fruit I had the sudden inspiration to add a vanilla bean. A lot of the seeds got caught up in the foam but the vanilla flavor shined through. I added a tad of butter to decrease foaming but I still got some. Foaming , experts believe. adds to spoilage. Another thing you have to worry about is the pectin setting. I need to stock up on pectin! I processed this and found after 24 hours the jam didn't set. The instructions on the pectin box said how you can redo the jam.The only thing wasted is the lids and bands.So I redid the batch to much better results.I'm wondering if I did add enough sugar. I ended up adding a cup more sugar than was previously used.The taste of the unset jam was fantastic!I was almost tempted to use it just as a fruit syrup. I'm just be going to be handing out these as gifts to friends and coworkers while keeping a few for us. I asked Certain Someone to give a jar of Watermelon rinds to his golf buddy and co worker. They had to call me to explain why it wasn't pink and what it actually was.I'm sure these fruity preserves wont be met with confusion.
Apricot Cherry Preserves with Vanilla Bean
1 pond of cherries
1 1/2 pounds of apricots ( about 8 or so)
6 cups natural cane sugar *I ended adding another cut when redoing the batch.
1 vanilla bean
1/4 cup water
1 package of Pectin
Wash and stone fruit. Cut vanilla bean down the middle and scrape seeds. Add fruit and vanilla bean pulp with pod to heavy pan. Add sugar , water , and pectin. Bring to rolling boil as you stir. Scrape off any foam that rises. Take of heat and stir more. Laddle into sterilised jars, place lids, on , and process according to instructions. I used the pressure canner with a weight of 5 lbs and a process time of 10 minutes. Take out canner and let and set 24 hours. I f the jam doesnt set, redo as instructed on the package of pectin. If you choose to use no sugar or sugar substitutes use a pectin brand for less sugar.
Makes 8 half pints