It’s grape season!
I’ve been pleasantly surprised to see decent-sized clusters of grapes on our 3 year old vines this year! Not only that, a friend called me and asked if I wanted to come over and pick the rest of her grapes. I never turn down an opportunity to pick anything!
Time for grape juice and grape jelly! Keep in mind that jams and jellies make wonderful gifts around the holidays! I use smaller jars for gift-giving.
Making anything from grapes is labor intensive, but the purple-stained fingers you’ll bear for a few days are completely worth it!
How to Make Grape Juice
Wash grapes; drain. Stem, crush and measure grapes. Add 1 cup water to each gallon of crushed grapes.
Heat grapes 10 minutes at 190 degrees F. Do not boil.
Once cooled, strain juice through a damp jelly bag or several layers of cheesecloth. Let stand for 24 hours in refrigerator.
The next day, little crystals will appear on top of your juice, and they need to be skimmed off. Ladle juice from container, being careful to not disturb sediment.
Strain juice again. I’m always amazed at how much pulp is still in there!
Measure juice; add 1 to 2 cups sugar to each gallon of juice. Reheat juice for 5 minutes at 190 degrees F. Do not boil.
Ladle hot juice into hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch head space. Adjust 2 piece caps, process pints and quarts 15 minutes in a boiling water bath canner. ( Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving, page 22 with my inserted comments added)
4 cups Concord grape juice (about 3 pounds)
7 cups sugar
1 pouch liquid pectin
Put grape juice in a large saucepot. Add sugar, stirring until dissolved.
Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Stir in liquid pectin. Return to rolling boil. Boil hard for one minute, stirring constantly.
Remove from heat. Skim foam if necessary. Ladle hot jelly into hot jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace.
Adjust two-piece caps, process 10 minutes in a boiling water canner.
(Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving – page 36)