Black Raspberry Jam without Pectin

SycamoreLane Photography-3-2

With this recipe you can make preserves or a jam.  I prefer less seeds in mine so I run my berries through a food mill to extract the juice and eliminate a good portion of the seeds.  The premise of this recipe is that you can use whatever berries you have.  If you only have one pound of berries then use 1/2 a pound of sugar and 1/2 ounce of lemon juice.

I like bigger batches so I try to get at least 4 pounds of juice each time I make this.

Black Raspberry Jam

4 lbs of washed and sorted berries (or 4 lbs extracted juice)

2 lbs of sugar (white or pure cane)

2 oz of freshly squeezed lemon juice

Bring ingredients to a boil.  Continue boiling.  Stir to prevent sticking and scorching.  Cook down until jam thickens and passes the spoon test.  Take a cold spoon dip into the jam hold it about 12 inches above the pot.  Tip it and if the jam is jelled it will side off the spoon in a glob rather than dripping.

Ladle into hot canning jars. Top with lids and rings.  Process in a hot water bath ten minutes.  Yield 4 pints + 1 half pint


Tomato Juice Cocktail

Tomato Juice Cocktail


10 quarts of tomatoes washed cored and cut into quarters

4 green peppers seeded and cut into chunks

2 carrots cut into chunks

4 small celery stalks cut into chunks

2 medium onions cut into chunks

Place tomatoes into a heavy duty stock pot, cook on high.  Place the remaining vegetables in the blender with 1 cup of water and puree.  Add pureed vegetables to the tomatoes.  Add 3 cups of water to the tomatoes and vegetables . Bring mixture to a boil and cook until tomatoes are soft.  Run the softened tomatoes and vegetables through a food mill.  Discard skin and seeds. 

Place juice back in the stock pot.


2 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons canning salt

3 teaspoons season salt

1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder

Bring juice to a boil and boil for 10 minutes.

Place 2 Tablespoons of lemon juice in each quart jar (This helps insure correct acidity).  1 Tablespoon for pint jars.  Pour hot juice into hot canning jars.  Place in hot water bath.  Process quarts for 45 minutes; pints 40 minutes.  (Start counting your processing time after the water in the canner has returned to a boil.)

Bread and Butter Pickles


Bread and Butter Pickles


16 cups of sliced (unpeeled) cucumbers

8 small onions sliced into rings

Place onions and cucumbers in a large bowl sprinkle with 1/2 cup canning salt.  Cover with ice cubes and let set 3 hours.

In a stock pot combine:

5 cups sugar

1/2 teaspoon celery seed

2 teaspoons mustard seed

1 1/2 teaspoons tumeric

1 teaspoon ground cloves

5 cups apple cider vinegar

Bring the brine to a boil.  Drain and rinse the cucumbers and onions.  Add the cucumbers and onions to the brine and bring back to a boil.  Fill hot jars with cucumbers, onions, and brine.  Leave 1/4 inch head space. Process in a hot water bath 10 minutes.  (Start your count time after the water in the canner has returned to a boil.)

Yield: 6-7 pints

Canning Applesauce


Ingredients needed:

Apples~ (Macintosh, Cortland, Empire, Spy, Ida Red, Jonathan) use 2 to 3 different varieties to make a flavorful sauce





Equipment needed:

Heavy, Large pot

Food Mill

Hot Water bath canner

Quart or pint jars

Lids and bands for jars


Wash and quarter apples (leave on skins and do not core).  Place apples in heavy pan.  Add about a cup of water or enough to prevent the apples from scorching to the bottom of the pot. (I used a 5qt. pan and found a cup of water worked fine if using a smaller pan use less, a larger pan more.)  Place on high heat and cover.  When steam starts escaping or you notice pot is boiling, stir up the apples. Place cover back on and continue stirring every so often.  Check to make sure the apples aren’t scorching.  If they are reduce heat and or add more water.  Continue cooking until apples are soft and you have what looks like a chunky applesauce (make sure all chunks are soft).

Remove from heat. 


Scoop spoonfuls into a food mill (with a bowl beneath it) and run the wooden paddle around the cone of the food mill until only skins and pulp are left.  Repeat this process until you have done the whole pan.


Rinse out your heavy pan and then place the applesauce back into the pan.Add sugar.  I used about 1 1/2 – 2 cups of sugar per 5 quarts of apples.  The amount will depend on how you want it to taste.  Add cinnamon.  I don’t measure this I just add and taste.  Place back on the heat and bring to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring to prevent sticking.

Ladel hot applesauce into hot jars.  Wipe rims and place on heated lids, screw down bands.  Place in hot water bath canner.  Repeat until all jars are filled.

Process 20 minutes for pints and quarts.


*I found that 10 qts of apples made about 5-6 quarts of applesauce

Just Peachy


Because I don’t have enough to do…


I present to you Mr. Protuberance P. Peach! 

He has been the source of much giggling and taking of bets to see who would get the privilege of devouring him.  Alas, we will never know because this wise momma, who presides over the hooligans, cut him up and put him in a jar!

I just finished canning the last of the peaches this morning.  I am pleased to say that I was able to can 18 quarts of peaches, make 2 batches of peach jam, whip up a peach crisp and still have a few for fresh eating, all from one bushel of peaches! YEAH!


We LOVE peach jam! It is absolutely scrumptious and super easy to make.

If you haven’t canned before don’t fret.  You don’t need anything special or expensive.  All you need to purchase are jars, canning lids, screw on bands, pectin and peaches. They great thing is that the jars and screw on bands are re-usable!

Peach Jam

8-12 peaches or enough to make up 4 cups of fruit.

1 box of powdered pectin

5 1/2 cups sugar

2 Tablespoons lemon juice

Wash jelly jars of pint jars in hot soapy water. Place them in a stock pot and cover them with water. Place on stove and bring to a boil. Once boiling turn heat down and keep them nice and hot.

Place a large pot, filled 3/4 of the way full with water, on the stove and bring to a boil.

While waiting for the water to boil wash your peaches and check for ripeness.  I usually do this by sniffing them (they should smell peachy) and by applying light pressure, if they are ripe they will give just a little.  You don’t want to use under ripe fruit that is as hard as a baseball.

Once water is boiling place peaches carefully into the water and cook for 1 minute.  Remove peaches and place them in a large bowl of cold water, set in your sink. Run cold water over them for at least a minute. 

Taking a knife cut around the peach.  The skin should come right off and if your peaches are a cling-free variety they should come of the pit easily.  Place peach slices into a blender.  Or if you desire a chunky jam mash your peaches with a potato masher and skip the blender.

Blend peach slices until smooth.  You will need 4 cups of the blended peaches so measure as you go.

Place peaches in a heavy, large pot (6-8 quarts).  Place on high heat and stir in the pectin. Bring to a full boil.

Place canning lids in hot water and keep warm.

Gradually stir in the sugar.  Continue stirring and bring to a rolling boil and boil for 2 minutes.

Remove pan from the heat skim off any foam (I personally skip this step).  Immediately fill your hot jars to about 1/4 from the top. Wipe around the rim to remove any jam. Place lid on top and screw down the band tightly.  Invert the jars on a towel.  Continue till all jars are filled and then set timer for 5 minutes.  After 5 minutes flip jars back to upright position. 

And that’s it! Now just listen for the glorious popping of sealing jars!

Let jars set undisturbed for 24 hours.