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Old 05-30-2008, 10:02 AM   #1
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Making an addition to this jam

It's for strawberry-rhubarb jam. I'd like to add some tins of pineapple tidbits to the recipe. I don't care for the texture of crushed pineapple. Could I alter this recipe by adding the pineapple to it, or would it screw up the recipe? If I can add tinned pineapple without any issues, how many cans and what size cans of pineapple would you recommend adding (two 8 ounce, two 12 ounce, one 20-ounce, etc.). Should I drain the pineapple of the juice or syrup, or just add it undrained (provided it's feasible to add pineapple to the original recipe).

Here's the original recipe:

Strawberry-rhubarb Jam:

4 cups thinly sliced rhubarb
4 cups sliced strawberries
4 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt (I honestly don't know why salt is in a canning recipe for jelly, could I just omit this?)

10 cups sugar
3-1/2 ounces (2 packages) powdered pectin


In large kettle combine all ingredients except the sugar. Cook over high heat until mixture comes to a full boil. Add sugar and keep stirring. Be sure sugar dissolves into the mixture. Return to boil and boil for one minute. Don't forget to keep stirring to avoid sticking and lumps, etc. Remove from the burner and skim off the foam with a spoon.

Spoon the hot jam into hot (preferably half-pint) canning jars. Leave 1/4 inch of space at the top. Wipe the jar rims and adjust the lids. Place the jars in a boiling-water canner for 5 minutes - remember that time begins when the water begins to boil. Remove the jars from canner and cool on racks.

This should make about 12 half-pint jars.

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Old 05-30-2008, 10:28 AM   #2
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Adding or changing ingredients of a canning recipe is not recommended and could potentially cause problems in the stability and safety of the food.
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Old 05-30-2008, 07:43 PM   #3
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Unfortunately I could only find one recipe for a rhubarb-pineapple-and-strawberry jam. It doesn't originally call for a processing time. However I've heard that you just process a jam or jelly for 10 minutes in a boiling water bath for pints. Could I just use that as a processing time for the recipe I do have? I would use another recipe if I could find one, but I can't. No I cannot order the Blue Ball book, which has been referred to as the canning bible and a good resource for canning in general. I know it's cheap to order off the internet, but I really can't afford that many splurges.

Here's the recipe I have managed to find:

Three Fruit Jam (that's the original title for it)

5 c. finely diced pineapple
5 c. rhubarb, cut in 1/2 inch slices
8 c. sugar
3 qt. whole strawberries
1 c. lemon juice

Mix pineapple and rhubarb in 10 or 12 quart kettle; add 1 cup sugar. Let stand for 1 hour. Place over low heat; bring to boiling point, taking about 15 minutes. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in strawberries and remaining sugar. Return to low heat; bring to a rolling boil, allowing about 15 minutes. Increase heat, boil vigorously for 15 minutes. Add lemon juice. Bring to boiling point; boil vigorously for 15 minutes longer, stirring constantly. Turn into hot, sterilized jars, filling jars to within 1/2 inch of top. Remove air bubbles; seal at once. Yields 12 half pints.
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Old 05-30-2008, 08:50 PM   #4
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adding the pineapple won't affect the quality of the jelly, or jam, as long as you take into account that you are adding more liquid to the mixture, and so must add more pectin. Or, you can decrease the amount of one of the other fruits by the amount of pineapple you add. Be sure to use cooked pineapple as it has an enzyme in it that may react with the other foods, breaking them down (I know the enzyme attacks meat and that cooking the pineapple denatures the enzyme. Not sure if it would actually turn fruit into mush. It may only affect protiens and collagen.)

If you decrease the amount of other fruit, make sure that it is in its cooked form, as in it's raw form, it has air pockets between the pieces of fruit.

Use the can liquor as it will intensify the flavor of the pineapple in your end product.

Safety is affected by the canning technique, not by the fruits added to the jam/jelly. Process by the volume of the recipe and you will be fine.

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Old 05-30-2008, 11:31 PM   #5
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Um okay, trying to alter the recipe for strawberry rhubarb jam sounds really complicated and confusing. Could I just use the three fruit jam recipe I found off the internet? As said before I know it doesn't call for a processing time.

However I've heard protocol for processing pint jars is 5 or 10 minutes.
I even found a website from a University that has tons of information on canning. It says that if the recipe doesn't call for a processing time, to process the jam/jelly/chutney in a boiling water bath for 5 minutes. However other people have told me for pint size jars you should process 10 minutes. Which is it.

The site that gave me canning info on the processing times in a boiling water bath did say that if you don't sterilize your jars prior to processing you should process 10 minutes in a boiling water bath.
What exactly does it entail to sterilize your canning jars? I've heard of the terminology I just don't know what it involves.
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Old 05-30-2008, 11:57 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by essenceofeclectic View Post
It says that if the recipe doesn't call for a processing time, to process the jam/jelly/chutney in a boiling water bath for 5 minutes. However other people have told me for pint size jars you should process 10 minutes. Which is it.
The updated information is to omit the pre-sterilization of the jars, but make sure the BWB is at least 10 minutes which will properly complete the sterilization process.
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What exactly does it entail to sterilize your canning jars? I've heard of the terminology I just don't know what it involves.
Sterilization is to use boiling water in order to kill any bacteria. Jars now only need to be clean and brought up to a temperature of about 180 deg. F so they can safely receive the hot liquid. Usually jars are heated in the canner as the water is heating up.
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Old 05-31-2008, 12:34 AM   #7
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I heard that sterilizing jars involved washing them in hot soapy water and then rinsing them out. These questions are going to seem really stupid, but when do you add your jars to the canner? Should the water be in the canner prior to adding the jars, and then just brought to a boil? Then do you start your processing time? Also if you omit the sterilization step, do you only have to process your jam or jelly for 5 minutes in a boiling water canner? Is the sterilization step mandatory or can it be omitted?

Another thing I'm confused about is most recipes say process 10 minutes in a boiling water bath. However you just said make the boiling water bath at least 10 minutes to complete the sterilization process; is there any difference between sterilizing jars and processing jars in a boiling water bath?

If I follow the guidelines you've recommended for processing, can I make the three fruit jam recipe I posted despite the fact that the original recipe doesn't call for a processing time in a boiling water bath?
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Old 05-31-2008, 10:39 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by essenceofeclectic View Post
I heard that sterilizing jars involved washing them in hot soapy water and then rinsing them out.
No, that is just cleaning them. Sterilizing requires a much higher water temperature, i.e., boiling water (212° F). The Boiling Water Canning process is actually a sterilization process, to kill bacteria in the food.

Quote:
when do you add your jars to the canner? Should the water be in the canner prior to adding the jars, and then just brought to a boil? Then do you start your processing time? Also if you omit the sterilization step, do you only have to process your jam or jelly for 5 minutes in a boiling water canner? Is the sterilization step mandatory or can it be omitted?
You really should purchase and read the Ball Blue Book of Preserving to get complete and proper information and instructions. You have far too many questions than can be properly responded to here IMO.

Quote:
Another thing I'm confused about is most recipes say process 10 minutes in a boiling water bath. However you just said make the boiling water bath at least 10 minutes to complete the sterilization process; is there any difference between sterilizing jars and processing jars in a boiling water bath?
They are both the same process.

Quote:
If I follow the guidelines you've recommended for processing, can I make the three fruit jam recipe I posted despite the fact that the original recipe doesn't call for a processing time in a boiling water bath?
Technically speaking....No, because it is not an approved and testing recipe to be safe. But of course that doesn't stop people from still doing it.
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Old 05-31-2008, 03:18 PM   #9
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For what you want to do I would use the Three Fruit Jam recipe. If you want to used canned pineapple - you want to make sure that the combination of pineapple + juice do not exceed the 5 Cups total called for in the recipe.

Washing your jars and equipment in hot soapy water only sanatizes - to steralize you need to boil in water for 10-minutes. For jams and such - if you are using sanatized, not steralized, jars - you must double the processing time.

As for boiling water processing times .... if you use steralized jars (read this General Canning Information page on the National Center for Home Food Preservation site for how to steralize jars) - you could probably be safe with 5 minutes for 1/2 pints, or 10 minutes for pints. Personally - I go with 10 minutes for 1/2 pints, 15-minutes for pints ... just to be sure in case I broke my "sterile field".

The process timing begins when the water comes to a full rolling boil. Fill your jars, add to your water canner, and when the water comes to a full rolling boil - that is when you start timing.
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