Friday, August 7, 2015

Muscadine Grape Juice

A friend of mine allowed me to pick some of her Muscadine Grapes so I did a few jars of juice.

Common Names: Muscadine, Bullace, Scuppernong, Southern Fox Grape. 

Origin: The muscadine grape is native to the southeastern United States, found in the wild from Delaware to the Gulf of Mexico and westward to Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas. Many older varieties were selections from the wild, but the Georgia Agricultural Experiment Station and the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture have introduced a number of improved varieties that have become standard cultivars. The earliest named variety was Scuppernong, found growing wild in northeastern North Carolina in 1810 by Dr. Calvin Jones. Scuppernong has become another name for all muscadine grapes. Commercial production of muscadine grapes is essentially limited to the U.S. Southeast. 

The directions below can be used for any variety of grape.  I used my steam juicer which works wonderfully but if you don't have one just follow the procedure below.

You will need:  
An average of 24-1/2 pounds of grapes for a canner load of 7 quarts; an average of 16 pounds for a canner load of 9 pints. 

Quality: Select sweet, well-colored, firm, mature fruit of ideal quality for eating fresh or cooking.

Wash and stem grapes.
Place grapes in a saucepan, crush and add just enough boiling water to cover grapes.
Heat to simmering and simmer slowly until skin is soft, about 10 minutes. 
Strain through a damp jelly bag or double layers of cheesecloth. 
Refrigerate juice for 24 to 48 hours. Without mixing, carefully pour off clear liquid and save; discard sediment.
If desired, strain through a paper coffee filter for a clearer juice. 
Add juice to a saucepan and sweeten to taste. 
Heat and stir until sugar is dissolved. 
Continue heating with occasional stirring until juice begins to boil. 

Fill into jars immediately, leaving 1/4-inch head-space.

Wipe rims of jars with a wet paper towel dipped in vinegar to ensure a good seal.  

Place lids and rings on jars and tighten down finger tight.

Process according to the chart 

Table 1. Recommended process time for Grape Juice in a boiling-water canner.
Process Time at Altitudes of
Style of PackJar Size0 - 1,000 ft1,001 - 6,000 ftAbove 6,000 ft
HotPints or Quarts5 min 1015
Label and Store in a cool, dark place.

Reference:  NCHFP