Sunday, August 9, 2015

Gilded Bluebarb Jam (Toast Topper #62) #SundaySupper

I've been slow to get into the canning kitchen this year. Between all the nitty gritty details of finishing the school year and jumping right into Summer Camp counsellor duty, the weekends provided barely enough time for me to get to the gym, shop for groceries and prepare for the next week! I knew that August (which I booked off of work) would be my great "catch up" month, letting me tend the garden, clean my closets, travel out to my dad's trailer and get preserving!

Canning in the height of Summer is a bit of a catch-22, especially this year where we've had some ridiculously warm weeks. I was finally driven to drag out the beast of a water bath canner after having not one, but two bags of fruit leap out of the freezer onto the floor when I went to grab some bread. I had carefully prepped and measured peaches, plumcots, strawberries and mangoes as I picked them up from farmers markets or supermarket sales, and eventually the freezer just got too full - a fact which was accompanied by a somewhat insistent nagging poking from Mother Dearest to "please do something with all that stuff in the freezer!". Given that I had bags of local wild blueberries (scored at an excellent price from the market) that I had IQF'ed recently and a seemingly neverending supply of rhubarb in the backyard (my stepfather bought two - yes, two - new plants this year to add to the three we already had), I figured bluebarb would be my first canning foray.

Of course, I could never just make blueberry-rhubarb jam. Not the traditional way. The first thing I did was choose a no-sugar-needed pectin as my thickener, allowing me to slash the sugar and allow the true fruity flavour of the berries to come through. I had a little jar of decadent, local honey in my pantry that I had bought from the  Brickworks Farmers' Market downtown and used that to add a flavourful, bitter-sweet note to the mixture, and completed the sweetness trifecta with a few packets of Truvia. For kicks (and because I was canning some of this for holiday gift giving), I sprinkled in some gold flakes, lending an opulence to the jars as they sat on the counter, cooling. 

Gilded Blueberry Rhubarb Jam

The two jars I didn't process went into the fridge - where, upon being discovered by Mom and Grandma, they met an untimely demise on home baked bread. The only thing that made this better was a smear of creamy peanut butter underneath! 

This week, #SundaySupper is sharing recipes for canning, freezing and all types of preserving the goodness of our gardens and markets this Summer season. Our hosts this week are Stacy of Food Lust People Love and Heather at Hezzi-D's Books and Cooks
- thanks ladies!

Check out what we're saving up below:

Canning
 
Dehydrating

 
Fermentation

 
Freezing

 
Infusing

 
Pickling

 
Preserving in oil or butter

 
And for even more help check out  Food Preservation Tips from Sunday Supper Movement

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Gilded Blueberry Rhubarb Jam
Makes 7 (8-oz) jars, 56 (2-tbsp) servings
5 ½ cups (~24 oz) rhubarb, washed and chopped into ½” dice
1 cup sugar, divided
½ tsp salt
¼ cup
wildflower honey (local if you can find it)
12 packets
Truvia
1 ¼ cups water
2 ½ tbsp no-sugar needed pectin (I used
Ball RealFruit Low or No-Sugar-Needed Pectin)
2 cups (~10.5 oz) blueberries, washed and stemmed
¼ cup lime juice
½ tsp
edible gold dust or "cake glitter", optional
  1. In a medium nonreactive bowl, combine rhubarb, 1/2 cup sugar, salt, honey and Truvia. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit on the counter overnight.
  2. In a large saucepan or pot, combine water, pectin and remaining sugar.
  3. Stir in blueberries, rhubarb mixture and its juices, lime juice and gold dust.
  4. Bring to a full rolling boil over high heat, stirring constantly, 1 minute.
  5. Can 10 minutes in a water bath or refrigerate up to 2 weeks.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 23.9
Total Fat: 0.0 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 3.6 mg
Total Carbs: 6.2 g
Dietary Fiber: 0.4 g
Protein: 0.2 g