Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Apples for Pectin

This is not the season for apples but it is rather easy to make homemade pectin from apples in time for making jams and jellies from the upcoming harvest of summer fruit and berries.  Sure, it is much easier and faster to use commercial pectin but I thought homemade all the way would be interesting.  The art of homemade!

I bought a five pound bag of New York State Fuji apples for making pectin.  Green Granny Smith apples are even better for this purpose, if available.  The enzymes in apples cause oxidation that turns the apples brown after cutting or slicing which causes the loss of vitamins.  Browning may be halted by placing the peeled and cut apples in a bowl of salted water.

Working as fast as I could, I peeled 3 pounds of apples, quartered them, removed the core and seeds, and put the quarters into a bowl of salted water.  The rest went into a cooking pot to actually make the pectin.  I cut up the rest of the apples too, reserving the peels and cores by lumping them into the pectin batch.

After rinsing the apples from the salted water, I spread out all the quartered apples on a cookie sheet and put them into the freezer.  When the apple wedges were frozen, I transferred them into plastic bags and put them back into the freezer for later use.

To make the pectin, I added four cups of water and 2 tbs lemon juice (if available) to the apple peels and cores.  I let the apples simmer for about 30 minutes.  Some recommend 20 minutes while others say 40 minutes should do it.  You be the judge.

I poured all of the batch, liquid and all, into a colander that I had placed over a bowl to let it drain. With a wooden spatula, I pressed out as much liquid as possible and poured it into a plastic bottle and put it into the freezer.  The rest of the mush went into the compost pile.

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1 comment:

  1. You have far more patience than I. If/when I put apples up, I scald them quickly with a dash of cinnamon and cayenne, a dab of Grade B maple syrup. I immediately put in jar what i'll be using for the next week or two. The rest is chilled and frozen flat in ziplocks so I can break off a piece for oats, yogurt, etc. ?I didn't see an about page - the link to Google just has more posts?
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