Back to making my own jams & marmalades again, looking for a preserving pan. Any ideas where?
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Abbie is a trusted source on General Cooking.
Our grocery store sells them - the big blue and white speckled kind - I suspect that WalMart probably does too. I think wherever you find jars you are likely to also find the canning pot. I recommend the Ball tool kit as well - it has tongs, magnet, funnel and the pokey thing that I never use ...
Thank you... Have not seen them in Wal Mart...which now begs another question... Copper or stainless steel?!!
Go with stainless steel. Copper has issues with acids and leaching. Cheaper also.
Since our worldwide economic crisis. The cost of metals has gone through the roof! A quick search shows a copper preserve pan is around $300! A stainless steel one would run around a $100. I have a small copper bowl that I purchased 15 years ago for around $40. The same one now runs $90! I also like to maximize my $$ and space. I look to buy things that have multiple uses and a copper pan, although nice; wouldn't be my first choice. Despite the fact that I do a fair amount of preserving. I hope you find a great deal on whatever you end up purchasing!
I think the copper or stainless steel question may be answered by your budget. Stainless steel should suit you just fine for most things, but copper's heat conductivity will allow you to better control the temperature of your preserves during cooking. And since you can raise the initial temperature quickly, it does shave off a few minutes of cook time which can improve your preserves since they need spend less time boiling away in the pan. Another question, however, is are you planning to preserve things other than jam, like green vegetables (or acidic foods or low sugar jam)? If you are, go with the stainless steel pan or be sure that the copper pan is lined; unlined copper can impart a metallic taste to green vegetables and alter their color to a greyish hue and will react with highly acidic foods or fruits. Rachel Saunders of the Blue Chair Fruit Company says that the key to using a copper pan effectively and safely is only adding the jam mixture to it AFTER the fruit and sugar have been properly combined, thereby eliminating any potential risks of copper toxicity. All that being said, I've been using an oval enameled cast-iron pan to make my jam (since it's the pan I have available) with more than satisfactory results. Hope that helps!
Sorry, that wasn't very clear; I meant oval enameled cast iron Dutch oven (like aargersi). It works very well, although unlike aargersi, I tend to make more around 4-5 pints at a time since we go through jam and preserves pretty quickly!
Thanks a million for taking the time here... My Mum and grandmother had the copper preserving pans in Ireland... I saw them use them but never thought to ask them about them.! I really love Copper...I think I may try and purchase a copper one that is lined with stainless steel...
Oh wait do you mean to cook the jam in? I thought you meant for processing the jars. I cook my jams in a LeCruset dutch oven. I prefer to do small batch (12 1/2 pints max) and quick cooked jams made with pectin. I think you keep more of the actual fruit flavor that way. Butters cook longer of course ... but that pot works great, I don't have a separate jam only pan.
I also use my LeCreuset dutch oven, but my daughter swears by her fancy French copper pot. I get great results and never make more than 8 pints at a time.
Stainless steel, Le Creuset---all fine. The pan I use for jams is so old and un-fancy that I'd be embarrassed to mention its provenance. Technique is a lot more important, particularly learning to make jams and preserves without the pectin that's so frequently deemed "essential."
I make jams both with and without pectin. I fell there are merits to both methods.
I just made a batch of Raspberry Jam, using nothing more than sugar...it's absolutely delicious..
Used it to fill a Lemon Zest Yogurt Cake and Whipped Cream..
Just to be clear, copper doesn't have leaching issues with jamming- but aluminum alloys definitely do! Stainless steel or enamel are good options, too.
I have a very large commercial copper jam pan. It cost a staggering amount- so for your home, go with a dutch oven and save $$