Our muscadine vines are producing a great crop of grapes this summer. We all have enjoyed eating the grapes while standing in the yard but now there are so many coming in that I need to do something with them.
On Sunday our neighbors brought over their juicer and we juiced 2 gallons. I was disappointed that the juice was fairly bitter. I did some research online and found that juicing the grapes on the stove is preferred when making jelly so I picked another gallon.
The first step is washing the grapes, followed by mashing them with a potato masher.
Once the grapes' skins have popped, I heated them on the stove.
After boiling the juice and pulp for 10 minutes, I strained the juice through a colander lined with a few layers of cheesecloth.
Look at this amazing juice! If hadn't already committed this batch to jelly, I would have served it at breakfast. Muscadine juice has a much milder flavor than the more common Concord grape juice. I stopped at this point and refrigerated the juice over night.
Then tonight I strained the juice through wet cheesecloth again to remove any remaining particles (the goal for jelly juice is a very clear product).
Now armed with 5 1/2 cups of juice, I followed the low-sugar SureJell recipe for grape jelly.
Almost ready to can (pre foam-skimming).
A little while later and I had 7 half-pints of muscadine jelly. Perfect for biscuits and PBJ sandwiches.
I think this concludes my canning fair entry preparations for this year. In other news, Levi started Kindergarten last week (and it's partial immersion Spanish--so cool that kids have this option now). Mason begins 3 year-old preschool next week. And Tyler turned one a month ago. It's a fun time for our family!