Last Friday I went with one of my daughters to pick some plums at a friends house. Not just any plum, but my all time favorite...Italian Prune/Plum, whatever you prefer to call it. It doesn't matter to me, I just LOVE them...I can literally sit and eat several in one sitting. This week I noticed that we were not eating them as fast as they were ripening and I would need to come up with something to do with them. I've never done anything but eat them before so I clicked on google and searched for something to make. I decided on plum jam. I had one lonely box of pectin sitting in the cupboard feeling very left out I'm sure. I read a few blog posts from people, read the directions and decided I could certainly do this....make cooked jam.
I did run in to a few hurdles! But before I share those, I spent time this morning pitting and chopping up 4 lbs of plums.
(Doesn't that just look fabulously yummy!!!)
First hurdle....I don't own a water bath canner....I asked a friend of mine if I could use just a large pot and she said yes.
Second hurdle....I didn't have a round rack for the pot I was using...of course this didn't occur to me until the water was beginning to boil and the fruit was in a pot cooking on the stove...and I decided to google using a large pot as a water bath, and every site said I had to have a rack so the jars weren't sitting on the bottom of the pan. Visions of exploding glass jars and sticky, gooey purple jam all over my green and yellow kitchen, filled my mind. I quickly summoned one daughter to stir the fruit while I frantically rummaged through the kitchen looking for something, calling my MIL to see if she had something, then when nothing turned up, I just prayed it would work. As I filled the jars with the hot mixture and screwed on the lids, I remembered that my friend Sandy, from Reluctant Entertainer had done a post on just flipping the jars over to get a seal. BUT I couldn't find the post to see how she did it. All of a sudden, a thought occurred to me....I could use canning rings as a "rack". I gently placed the rings into the pot of hot water, and set the jars on top. It didn't leave much room at the top for water to cover the jars, but I didn't have much choice. I covered it all the way to the top knowing it would probably bubble over...it did.
I processed the jars for 10 minutes like the recipe from the pectin box said, then removed them. One of the jars "popped" letting me know it sealed, the other three didn't as quick so I stuck them back in the pan for another 5 minutes. They popped after that removal. I did have one jar that didn't quite fill up all the way that I "flipped" over like Sandy suggested just to see if it would work...it did. I might have tried that with the others but I couldn't find the blog post fast enough....
Let's just say I CANNOT wait to try it out. I'll let you know how it tastes.
With Joy UNquenchable,