Jam Notes: Experimenting with Syrup

By Gina Barber
Cameron, NC

So far, I’ve made over 100 half-pint jars of “happy breakfast fixin’s” – jam, jelly, preserves, and syrup – plus a couple dozen pints of pie fillings, and have used less than 10# of sugar! Even using sugar, we get a “low sugar” product, when compared to the typical “old family recipe” with more sugar than fruit.

six jars of syrup

We are experimenting with EVERYTHING – using apple and white grape juice concentrates to do the all-fruit versions. We’ve also used local honey (hoping for an allergy advantage in addition to the sugar replacement value). This week’s experiments include maple syrup.

Tops of jars of syrup

Simple Classic Strawberry Syrup,, Blackberry Wine Syrup, Blueberry-Vanilla Syrup & more


All of our “experiments” came from the recipes on the website or from Allison Carroll Duffy’s book, Preserving with Pomona’s Pectin (which is awesome). Hoping that by next year, we will be experienced enough to start converting the old family recipes to a healthier version.

Not too sure what we will do when the figs get ripe, but as The Son says, “The experiments have all been great so far, so keep ’em coming!” (This was said while inhaling peach strudels made with Cardamom Peach Pie Filling – and requesting that MORE jars be filled to insure an adequate supply.)

By the way, Pa hasn’t been able to eat strawberry syrup since 1960-something, because of a medical issue; couldn’t have the sugar or the seeds. He reminds us every spring that strawberry waffles were his favorite childhood treat. So his Father’s Day gift was a box of homemade, just-add-egg-and-water, whole-grain waffle mixes with all those fiber-rich things he’s supposed to eat (but definitely wouldn’t go to the trouble of preparing himself), combined with little add-in packets of nuts and dried fruits, paired with a jar of All-Fruit Strawberry syrup. Result: one seriously happy Senior Citizen – especially after the announcement that the “rest” of the gift was refills as needed. That is one well-traveled jar.

Photographs provided by Natural Spark Photography for use by Pomona’s Pectin and may not be published, broadcast, redistributed or aggregated without express permission.

Pomona’s Pectin Fruit Syrup — Low Sweetener Recipe here.

All-Fruit Strawberry Jam Recipe here.

Unsweetened, Stevia-Sweetened, or Very Lightly Sweetened Strawberry Jam Recipe here.



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