For those who have been following along, today’s blog focuses on the last “sweet treats” class we taught at Cornell Cooperative Extension as part of the food preservation series that ended earlier this month.
20 INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT GRAPES
1. Grapes appear in many colors: white, red, black, blue, green, purple and golden.
2. There are over 8,000 grape varieties worldwide.
3. The grape appears in the top ten of the world’s favorite fruits, along with tomatoes, mangoes and bananas.
4. The USA imports 25% of their grapes from Chile.
5. Grapes are botanically classed as berries.
6. The average person eats almost 8 pounds of grapes a year.
7. The oldest grapevine in America is a 400 year old Scuppernong vine in North Carolina.
8. Dried grapes (raisins) contain only 15% water.
9. The production of wine from grapes started as early as 5000 BC.
10. Grapes help minimize the risk of heart attacks because they increase the levels of nitric acid in the blood which prevents blood clots.
11. Grapes are used to help cure asthma indigestion, migraine, kidney disease and fatigue.
12. Grapes contain low levels of chоlеstеrоl, sodium and fat and are rich in vitamins K and C
13. Grapes are a laxative if you eat too many.
14. Grapes are 80% water so make a good snack, low in calories.
15. On average one acre of grapes can produce around 15,000 glasses of wine.
16. The grape industry worldwide produces over 72 million tons a year.
17. The grape growing industry is the largest food based industry in the world.
18. Australia produces 1.4 billion liters of wine per year.
19. The area which has the highest concentration of wineries in the world is The Napa Valley in California, with over 200.
20. In the 1800’s many vines in Europe were destroyed by an insect which came from America.
Interesting, huh? I promise you if you make the recipe below, including the grape juice from scratch, you will NEVER go back to commercial grape jelly. Till next time…..enjoy the family. Stefanie
Concord Grape Jelly from Scratch
5 cups prepared juice (buy about 3-1/2 lb. fully ripe Concord or other loose-skinned grapes)
1-1/2 cups water
1 box SURE-JELL Fruit Pectin
½ tsp. butter or margarine
7 cups sugar, measured into separate bowl
BRING boiling-water canner, half full with water, to simmer. Wash jars and screw bands in hot soapy water; rinse with warm water. Pour boiling water over flat lids in saucepan off the heat. Let stand in hot water until ready to use. Drain well before filling.
STEM and crush grapes thoroughly, 1 layer at a time. Place in large saucepan; add water. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 10 min., stirring occasionally. Place 3 layers of damp cheesecloth or jelly bag in large bowl. Pour prepared fruit into cheesecloth. Tie cheesecloth closed; hang and let drip into bowl until dripping stops. Press gently. Measure exactly 1-1/4 qt. (5 cups) prepared juice into 6- or 8-qt. saucepot.
STIR pectin into juice in saucepot. Add butter to reduce foaming. Bring mixture to full rolling boil (a boil that doesn’t stop bubbling when stirred) on high heat, stirring constantly. Stir in sugar. Return to full rolling boil and boil exactly 1 min., stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Skim off any foam with metal spoon.
LADLE immediately into prepared jars, filling to within 1/4 inch of tops. Wipe jar rims and threads. Cover with 2-piece lids. Screw bands tightly. Place jars on elevated rack in canner. Lower rack into canner. (Water must cover jars by 1 to 2 inches. Add boiling water, if necessary.) Cover; bring water to gentle boil. Process 5 min. Remove jars and place upright on towel to cool completely. After jars cool, check seals by pressing middle of lid with finger. (If lid springs back, lid is not sealed and refrigeration is necessary.)
Recipe courtesy of KraftRecipes.com