View Full Version : Canning odd fruits???

02-10-2009, 08:59 AM
We love fruits that are not traditionally canned such as watermelon and grapes. I would love to have the taste in the off seasons even if the consistency is different. I would even like the taste of watermelon puree or juice if it can be canned. I would also like to try canning berries but not in jelly or jam...again a puree or juice would be fine also so I can at least have the taste. Any idea if this can be done? If so how? Kim

02-10-2009, 09:07 AM
Could you freeze instead? Mon used to freeze grapes and watermelon.

There's also pickled watermelon rind but I don't remember doing that. You should be able to make a jelly from it though.

Garden Green
02-10-2009, 02:14 PM
I found this for you, but I've never done it so I can't tell you how it will turn out. I'm only home for lunch but when I get in tonight I'll see what else I can find for you.

1lb 3oz sugar to every 1 lb fruit
4c water to each lb sugar.
1 lemon to 6lb fruit
2-3oz ginger for flavoring

Soaking solution: 1T lime or 2T bicarbonate of soda to 6 pints of water. (12 cups)

Prepare watermelon: Cut the watermelon into strips. Remove the soft, fleshy part & peel off the outer green rind. Prick the rind all over with a carving fork or knitting needle, & cut it into even-sized squares or oblongs. Weigh the fruit.

Soak rind: Put the watermelon into a lime solution of 1T lime (or 2 T bicarbonate of soda) to 6 pints of water & soak it overnight. Next day, rinse it well & put it into a pan of fresh water. Leave it for 2 hours.

Boil rind: Have ready a pan of boiling water. Drain the watermelon & drop it into the boiling water (Important: keep the water boiling). Cook for about 10 - 15 mins. Until it is clear.

Prepare the syrup: 1 lb. 3 oz. Sugar to every lb. Fruit & 4 cups water to each lb. Sugar. . Bring syrup to the boil, & strain it through a sieve lined with cheesecloth.

Add rind to syrup: Return it to heat & when boiling, add the watermelon rind - a little at a time.

Add lemon juice & ginger: When all is boiling, add the strained juice of l lemon to every 6 lb. of fruit. Put 2 or 3 oz. of bruised ginger in a bag & add it for flavoring.

Cook till clear: Cook rapidly until the pieces of fruit are clear & the syrup thick.

Bottle: Leave until cold, then bottle, covering the fruit well with the syrup. Stand the bottles in hot water up to the neck of the jars & boil to sterilize for l5 mins.

When cold, tighten the lids & store in a cool dark place.

You can freeze watermelon puree without a problem. I'd just puree it and put it in freezer bags, remove as much air as possible (yay foodsaver!) and freeze it straight like that. You're probably looking at a 3 or 4 month freezer life, maybe longer.

Garden Green
02-10-2009, 06:19 PM

Pare off the green rind, cut the melon or white rind into pieces and weigh them. Cook in clear water until partly transparent, but not until likely to break. Take out the melon in a dish; there will be nearly enough juice that drains from the melon; if not, add a little water. With the juice add sugar to the amount of 1/2 pound to 1 pound of fruit as it weighed when raw. When the sugar is well dissolved, put in the melon and cook until even and clear. Flavor as desired, and can.

from The Inglenook Cookbook
by The Sisters of the Brethren Church (1906)

Garden Green
02-10-2009, 06:23 PM
A little further research and I found Watermelon Ice from Cooks.com:

"Light and lively, no machine required. Those of you who will admit to a misspent youth will recognize this ice as a grown up version of a plugged watermelon: for the virtuous and ignorant, that is a watermelon into which collegiate types pour quantities of vodka or rum, and then wax lyrical over something that tastes quite dreadful, usually warm, always far too alcoholic. This is a crisp, cold, light dessert which preserves all the taste of a watermelon, with just a touch of alcohol to add interest. I have chosen rum, but you could use vodka, or Grand Marnier, or you could skip the liquor entirely.

To make about a quart: 1/3 c. sugar 2 tbsp. lemon juice 2 tbsp. rum Mint leaves for garnish

Put 2/3 cup water, the sugar, and the lemon juice in a saucepan, and bring the mixture to a boil, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Simmer for 5 minutes; stir in the rum, and refrigerate to cool. In a food processor, puree the watermelon. With a few on/off bursts, add the syrup. Freeze the mixture in shallow trays until firm. Return it to the processor, and process until smooth. Freeze. Let the ice warm for 5 or 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with mint leaves. (If you want to be fancy, rinse the leaves, dip them in sugar, and refrigerate until serving time.)"

You'll have to play with the recipe to find the right amount of watermelon to syrup as I don't see a measurement for it here.

Garden Green
02-10-2009, 06:24 PM
These are on the market but would be fun to make yourself:

6 (12 oz.) cans orange juice concentrate
6 (12 oz.) cans lemonade, concentrate
Canned or fresh fruit, such as watermelon, honeydew, cantaloupe, strawberries, pineapple, grapes, peaches or bananas

Mix fruit and orange juice and lemonade together in a big bowl. (Drained if canned fruit.) Then put mixed fruit mixture into small containers and freeze. When ready to eat, take out of freeze and thaw slightly. Pour a small amount of Sprite pop in each container before serving.

Garden Green
02-10-2009, 06:40 PM
Quantity: An average of 14 pounds is needed per canner load of 7 quarts; an average of 9 pounds is needed per canner load of 9 pints. A lug weighs 26 pounds and yields 12 to 14 quarts of whole grapes--an average of 2 pounds per quart.

Quality: Choose unripe, tight-skinned, preferably green seedless grapes harvested 2 weeks before they reach optimum eating quality.

Procedure: Stem, wash, and drain grapes. Prepare very light, or light syrup.

Hot pack -- Blanch grapes in boiling water for 30 seconds. Drain, and proceed as for raw pack.

Raw pack -- Fill jars with grapes and hot syrup, leaving 1-inch headspace. Adjust lids and process according to the recommendations:

For hot: process 10 minutes. For raw: 15 to 20 minutes.

Garden Green
02-10-2009, 06:50 PM
Canning Grape Juice Recipe

Hard Way
Wash, crush and measure grapes.
Add 1 cup water to each gallon of crushed grapes.
Heat grapes and water 10 minutes at 190 degrees F.
Do not boil.
Strain juice in a damp jelly bag or several layers of cheesecloth.

Easy Way
Use a Steamer Juicer
Works for seeded or unseeded grapes.

Let stand for 24 hours in refrigerator (important)
Ladle juice from pan, being careful not to disturb sediment.
Strain juice again. Not needed for steamer juicer.
Measure juice; add 1-2 cups Sugar for each gallon to your taste.

To Freeze

Ladle into freezer containers.
We use gallon or 1/2 gallon plastic cartons.
Leave 1 inch headspace.
Seal, label, and freeze.

To Can

Reheat to 190 degrees F.
Ladle hot juice, into jars leaving 1/4-inch headspace.
Wipe rim, place lids and tighten rings.
Water Bath or Steam Can pints and quarts 15 minutes.
We use a steam canner.