Saturday, November 1, 2008

A Christmas Basket of Homemade Preserves

Need an idea for a hostess gift this Christmas season?
Going green? My family is...
Why not make up a basket of homemade goodies. This is just one of the many baskets I'll be giving out this upcoming season. Now, I've made my preserves already but there is still time.

In this basket I tucked a box of gourmet crackers, duo jam/jelly server (recycled from a thrift store) and three kinds of homemade canned goods. From top to bottom....Bev's red pepper jelly, blackberry jam (recipe follows) and a raisin chutney (recipe follows).

Savoury Curry Raisin Jelly
(from BERNARDIN Taste the Harvest- Canning pamphlet
serve with roast meats, or as an accompaniment with curry)

  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1 to 2 tsp curry pwd. or garam masala (I used my homemade masala mix)
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup very finely chopped red onion
  • 3/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1 pouch (85 ml) BERNARDIN Liquid Pectin
In a large stainless steel saucepan, combine sugar, spice, raisins and onion and vinegar. Over high heat, stirring constantly, bring mixture to a full rolling boil that cannot be stirred down. Add liquid pectin. Boil hard 1 minute stirring constantly. Remove from heat and skim off foam.

Stirring to disperse the ingredients, quickly ladle hot jelly into hot jars leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Heat process - boil filled jars in in boiled water canner 10 minutes. Cool, check seals, and store in a cool dark place for up to 1 year. Makes 6 125 ml or 3 x 250 ml jars.

Blackberry Jam
(I do declare this year it tasted almost like grape jelly, it was sooooo intense) (from Certo Package instructions)

  • 4 cups blackberries, crushed
  • 7 cups sugar
  • 2 pouches CERTO Liquid Pectin

MEASURE prepared fruit into large saucepan. Add sugar; mix well.

BRING to full rolling boil on high heat; boil 1 min., stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Immediately stir in pectin. Stir and skim foam for 5 min. to prevent fruit from floating to top.

POUR immediately into warm sterilized jars, filling to within 1/4 inch of rims. Seal while hot with sterilized two-piece lids with new centres. Let stand at room temperature until set. (Makes 7 x 250 ml jars)


  1. What a great idea, Trish. Perfect for ``raisin'' the spirits!!

    I've just returned from your beautiful country. Was in the Yukon ....

  2. What a beautiful little jam/jelly server. Who wouldn't LOVE being the receipient of this basket?
    Very nice gift idea!

  3. Beautiful gifts Trish! I am doing the same this year, people really appreciate receiving these homemade goodies.

  4. Trish, what a wonderful assortment of preserves and little jam containers. . .what a wonderful gift to recieve.

  5. Beautiful photos and a lovely, thoughtful idea! I wish I was on your Christmas gift list! smile

  6. A perfect gift from your kitchen, Trish! When you find the time to do all that, is beyond me.

  7. What a beautiful and practical basket of gifts! You are on busy gal! I also get the feeling that you love to give.

  8. Who doesn't enjoy recieving a gift basket of homemade goodies. Such a pretty presentation. I made Bev's red pepper jelly this year too. It's wonderful! Kathy

  9. My mom made frozen raspberry preserves. I made them too but my recipe burned in a house fire. Would anyone know how to make them? This is a cure for any cold, just saying