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Thread: Jam too runny! Tips for salvage?

  1. #1
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    Default Jam too runny! Tips for salvage?

    Seven cups of berries. Salmon, Blue, and Raspberries, sugar etc.... Brought to a boil, boiled for 1 minute, took off heat and stirred in pectin (a little more pectin than recommended) , poured in jars and boiled for 15 minutes. All jars sealed. The next day all the jars of jam are very runny. Should I just give them more time? Any advice to thicken it up? Can I pour out the jam and redo some of the process? Thanks for any tips or advice. HUNTR

  2. #2
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    We have had the same problem in the past. I would like to hear a solution as well. BTW the runny stuff makes GREAT pancake syrup!!!!!

  3. #3

    Default syrup

    I second the use of it as syrup.

  4. #4
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    Is this the "no sugar needed" pectin by mistake? If it's the kind that needs sugar, I think you're supposed to bring the berries to a boil with the pectin first, then add the sugar and bring to a rolling boil again, boil for a minute, then fill your jars and process 10 minutes for jam, 5 for jelly. I always use the "sugar required" pectin.

    Main causes of runny jam that I know of:
    • Didn't crush berries thoroughly. Use either one of those "food mills" (the Foley brand is the one Fred Meyer sells, and it's great for raspberries and salmonberries) or a potato masher. Crush the berries a layer at a time in a large flat-bottom pot. If you don't crush them, the pectin doesn't get to work on the juice inside them as well.
    • Mixing unlike berries: blueberries and raspberries take different amounts of sugar per cup of crushed berries.
    • Measuring berries before crushing. The recipes are usually for crushed, not whole, berries. It takes more than six cups of whole berries to make six cups of crushed berries.
    • Not enough sugar.
    • Rinsing berries and not draining all the water thoroughly. Your berries should be as free of water as possible before crushing them.
    The Sure Jell instructions have a section that tells you how to re-process the jam if it doesn't set. It's a pain in the butt to do it, but it works. You need to buy new lids (not the bands, just the lids) if you re-use the jars to process a second time.

    Or just use the runny jam as syrup, as stated above. Still deeeee-lish.

    (Remember, it sometimes takes up to 2 weeks for jam to fully set.)

  5. #5
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    Default Thanks

    My wife and I really appreciate the suggestions and insite. Thanks for taking the time. I think we are going to try reprocessing the jam. (P.S. Whittier berries are unbelievale this year)!

  6. #6
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    Raspberries and blueberries do not need added pectin to make jam. Although I have not tried mixing more than one type of berry at a time and usually make jam rather than jelly.

    Use 3/4 to 1 cup sugar per cup of berries

    Bring to a boil stirring a bit so it doesn't burn at the bottom of pan. Use a candy thermometer and measure the temp at the first boil...Continue to boil and stir to crush the berries (a simple wire whip works well) until the temp reaches 7 to 10 degrees higher than the original boil temp. The more sugar and the higher the temp will make thicker jam.

    Works every time for me and we made a lot of jam this year.
    Good luck,
    Grandma Lori
    If God had intended us to follow recipes,
    He wouldn't have given us grandmothers. ~Linda Henley

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