Vanilla Bean Cantaloupe Jam

Are your gardens starting to produce? I love this time of year when all of the hard work that goes into planting a garden starts paying off and we are rewarded with an abundance of vegetables, herbs, and fruits.
Eating produce fresh from your garden is an excellent way to save money, and it provides your body with important vitamins and minerals. If you grow more than you can eat, preserving your food by drying, freezing or canning will ensure food on the table this winter and a little extra money in the bank (because you don’t have to run out to the grocery store every time you need a can of corn or tomatoes.) If you preserve your own foods, you have your garden produce available year round, and you know exactly what went into every jar.
Canning is my favorite way to preserve foods. I remember my great aunt Rosemary canning green beans and I loved the way they tasted. I wanted to be like her when I grew up. When I got married, one of the first things that I bought was a Ball canning book and a water bath canner. It took a little trial and error but by following the instructions in the book, I was able to produce beautiful jars full of home canned goodness for my new husband and me to enjoy.

You can do it too! One of the easiest food items to make and can in a water bath canner is jam.
We currently have more cantaloupes that we can possibly eat so I searched for a good way to preserve them and happened upon a recipe for Vanilla Bean Cantaloupe Jam. The taste is blissful!

To make Vanilla Bean Cantaloupe Jam you will need-

5 cups of peeled and chopped cantaloupe
3 cups of sugar
One vanilla bean split and scraped
Two tsp lemon juice
One box powdered pectin
6- half-pint jelly jars

Prepare you boiling water canner and jars. Place lids in a small saucepan, cover them with hot water.
In a big pot combine the cantaloupe, sugar, and vanilla bean seeds and pod. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook for 7 to 10 minutes {or until the thermometer reads 220° F}. Add the lemon juice, stir in the pectin and return to a boil. Cook for an additional minute, stirring constantly.
Remove the pot from the heat, discard the vanilla bean pod, and ladle the hot jam into the jars. Wipe the rims; apply the lids and screw bands.
Process in the boiling water canner for 10 minutes. Remove jars from canner and cool.

If you make this, I’d love to hear how yours turned out. These would make great wedding favors or gifts for Christmas. Think of the possibilities!

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