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532 of 538 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AMAZING!!! Won Grand Champion Award at county fair!
AMAZING! Is what I would call this jam and jelly maker. I have to say I was a little disappointed when I couldn't use my recipes but once I adjusted my recipes to the principle recipes provided, I have outstanding results! Peach Jam can be made into to peach lavender with just a few adjustments. Pear jam can even more easily be made into pear rosemary jam by just adding...
Published on July 3, 2012 by Bretonbird

versus
34 of 38 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great product but having trouble getting jelly to set
I love certain things about this product. The ease of setting it up, letting it stir itself & everything being timed is great. I'm not seeing reviews stating the problems I've had. First, the lower sugar recipe in the instruction book (I was making apple jelly) never set up. I had to remake the batch & add the extra sugar to get it to set. Now, I've used the recipe...
Published on January 8, 2013 by lpinnc


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532 of 538 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AMAZING!!! Won Grand Champion Award at county fair!, July 3, 2012
This review is from: Ball® FreshTECH Automatic Jam & Jelly Maker (by Jarden Home Brands) (Kitchen)
AMAZING! Is what I would call this jam and jelly maker. I have to say I was a little disappointed when I couldn't use my recipes but once I adjusted my recipes to the principle recipes provided, I have outstanding results! Peach Jam can be made into to peach lavender with just a few adjustments. Pear jam can even more easily be made into pear rosemary jam by just adding a bit of rosemary. Unfortunately the strawberry season is over otherwise I would try my strawberry margarita twist on their strawberry jam.

Even better, little mess and no burns! I love this machine, I can't wait to see how the fair judges rate the jams and jellies. Since posting this review, I won Grand Champion at the county fair for the raspberry jam. Is this cheating???

Since posting this review, I have used the machine many, many times and have adapted these recipes that I want to share.

As with the strawberry jam options in the recipe booklet, make other options. Just follow the basic recipe and make the adjustments from your favorite recipies. I generally make the low sugar option:

Peach Lavendar Jam:

Steap 2 Tbls. lavendar buds for 20 minutes in 1.3 cup boiling water. Drain and reserve water (and half the buds, if desired). I use a coffee filter to strain. Put the reserved water (and buds) into the maker when you add the peaches.

Peach Amaretto Jam:

Add 2 Tbls. of Amaretto liquor after the peach jam after the machine has signaled that the jam is complete.

Pear Rosemary:

Add 2 tsp. finely chopped rosemary when adding the pears to the machine. I have also put in one cup of honey in place of one cup of sugar, which gives the result more like the stove top version. The gel is slightly softer, but still yummy.

Tomato Basil:

Blanch, seed, and crush Roma tomatoes to make the required measurement for low sugar fruit (3 1/4 cups). I put the tomatoes through a food mill on the largest setting. Use the basic recipe with pectin and Tbls lemon juice, etc. Add 2 Tbls of chopped basil when the machine indicates that the jam is complete.

Blackberry Brandy or other liquor:

Follow the recipe for berry jam and add 2 Tbls. of Brandy, orange liquor or Amaretto when the machine indicates that the jam is finished.

Apricot Jam:

Using the basic fruit recipe, I have subtituted apricots for peaches. I used about nine small apricots. If you want to make it a bit spicy add 1/2 tsp. nutmeg.

Apricot Habanjero Jam:

Put a bit of apricot and one habanjero in the blender and chop. Add to remaining apricots and start the jam.

Peach Melba (peach/raspberry) Jam:

This is a pint of raspberries and about 5 medium peaches for 3 1/4 cups. Switch out half the peach with raspberries, seeded or unseeded. The unseeded look prettier in the jar!

Peach Blackberry Jam:

One pint blackberries and about 5 medium peaches finely chopped in place of the peaches.

Pear Ginger Jam:

Add 2 Tbls fresh ginger, finely chopped or 1/4 cup candied ginger finely chopped to the peach jam recipe.

Pear Vanilla Jam:

Add the scrapings from one vanilla bean and 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract when you put the pears in the machine.

All I have time to type now. Happy jammin!

Ok a few more recipes:

Strawberry Margarita Jam:

Using the strawberry jam recipe in the booklet, substitute lime juice for lemon juice, add 1/4 cup tequila, 1 Tbls Triple Sec and 1 tsp shredded lime peel.

Orange Marmalade: (grand champion 2013)

4 oranges
1/4 tsp baking soda
2 lemons
2 cups of sugar
3 TBLS classic pectin
1 cup water

Using a potato peeler, peel orange rind off the four oranges. With a spoon, scrape any white pith remaining on peel. With scissors, cut peel in small pieces and place in pot with water. Peel lemons and slice very thinly removing any seeds. Put sliced lemons in pot with orange peel. Add baking soda and boil for 20 minutes. Drain water from lemons and orange peel. I use a coffee filter. While the peels are boiling, remove all white pith from orange, break into segments and remove seeds. Place oranges in blender and pulse until juice. Pour oranges into pot with peels/lemons and simmer for 25 minutes. Prepare jam maker with 3 TBLS pectin evenly in the bottom. Measure out 3 1/3 cups orange mixture. Add orange juice if more is needed. Pour orange mixture into maker, press jam. Pour sugar into the machine when alarm sounds. Do not put the lid on as this tends to boil over or watch it closely.

Lemon Rosemary Jam:

1.5 lbs lemons
1/4 tsp baking soda
4 sprigs rosemary
2 cups sugar
3 TBLS classic pectin

Using a potato peeler, peel lemon rinds. With a spoon,scrape any white pith remaining on the peel, with scissors, cut peel in small pieces and place in pot with one cup of water and baking soda. Boil for 10 minutes. Drain peels. I use a coffee filter. Repeat with 1 cup of fresh water. Drain again. While the peels are cooking, peel all white pith off lemons and thinly slice lemons and remove seeds. Add lemons to drained peels with3 cups of water. Cook for 20 minutes. Measure 3 1/4 lemon mixture. Add lemon juice if needed. Prepare mixer with pectin on bottom. Pour the lemon mixture over the pectin. When the alarm sounds add sugar. With 5 minutes left in the timer, added minced rosemary.

You can use this over pork or chicken as well as a jam. Delicious.

Blackberry Lemon

Add an extra tablespoon of lemon juice and the zest of a lemon to the berry recipe using blackberries.

Blueberry Lemon

Add and extra tablespoon of lemon juice and the zest of one lemon to the berry recipe using blueberries.

Triple Berry Jam

One large package of frozen berries generally is 3 1/3 cups thawed. Used basic low sugar berry recipe.

Pear Orange Jam:

Add 1 TBLS Grand Manier or other orange liqueur to pear jam.

Christmas Jam

1 pkg frozen sliced strawberries in light syrup thawed
1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
1 large orange
2 cups sugar
2 Tbs pectin
1 TBLS orange liqueur or frozen orange juice concentrate
Dab of butter

Zest orange. Remove remaining peel and seed orange. Coarsely chop orange and cranberries in food processor. Place pectin in the bottom of jam maker as usual. Evenly pour strawberries and orange/cranberry mixture over pectin. Add butter to reduce foam. Start machine. Pour sugar in when beep sounds. Add orange zest and orange liqueur when jam in finished before placing in jars. Watch lid as it can boil over. Makes a bit more than 5 half pint jars.
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244 of 250 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars FANTASTIC, July 9, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Ball® FreshTECH Automatic Jam & Jelly Maker (by Jarden Home Brands) (Kitchen)
Being over 70 and having spent my life in the kitchen both canning veggies and making jellies I want to THANK THE PERSON WHO INVENTED THIS JAM MAKER....IT IS FANTASTIC...(I must admit the first few times I used it I felt a wee bit lazy...but...)it comes out just right every time and I have been experimenting with different jams and jellies other than what the book gives ....and it works! I have told everyone who would listen to buy one for their wife, grandmother, girlfriend whoever likes to make homemade....so I am 1 HAPPY CUSTOMER.......
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234 of 246 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it!, September 5, 2012
This review is from: Ball® FreshTECH Automatic Jam & Jelly Maker (by Jarden Home Brands) (Kitchen)
I am a big sucker for kitchen gadgets. I just love them. Unfortunately, we don't have unlimited storage space (who does?) and so if I get a new gadget, an old one has to go, and that means the new one better deliver. I got this (and donated an old crock-pot to my son's school) because I have recently started preserving, and wanted to see if it really made the jam process easier. I think it does! And I think you will too!

Here are the differences in processes between the first time I made jam without the machine, and then with the machine:

Making jam WITHOUT JAM MAKER:
- Mash up fruit.
- Put in pan.
- Stir in pectin and then sugar.
- Watch like a hawk to make sure mixture doesn't boil over.
- Mixture boils over anyway. Oops.
- Spend 15 minutes cleaning up red-hot, sticky strawberry jam from all over the stovetop. Burn self. Curse loudly. Don't get all the jam cleaned up, bits of sticky jam will adhere to things that come near the stove for several days afterward.
- Put jam back on stove. Near boil-overs happen several more times, despite low heat on burner. Skim foam. Skim foam. Skim foam. Finally jam is at gelling point.
- Process jam in jars.
- Spend 20 minutes soaking and scrubbing jam-making pot that has crusty, sticky, scummy jam on it. Break fingernails. Curse loudly.

Making jam WITH JAM MAKER
- Mash up fruit.
- Put in maker. Sprinkle pectin on top.
- Turn on machine. Wait for four-minute beep. Add sugar.
- Go watch Breaking Bad on DVR for 17 minutes.
- Jam maker beeps, jam is done! Skim small amount of foam.
- Process jam in jars.
- Pan, lid and stirrer from jam maker clean up in about 5 minutes.

See? So much easier. Much less cursing.

I am not any kind of master preserver, but have been doing it for some years as I was taught to do it by my grandfather when I was a kid. There's nothing like fresh jam from fresh, organic produce. It tastes better, you can adjust the taste to suit yourself, and you control every aspect of the manufacturing process. It's fun, and now, with the jam maker, it's really easy. If you love to make jam and jelly, I highly recommend it. I wish my grandpa was still around to see this, I bet he would love it!
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164 of 172 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great device!, July 31, 2012
By 
This review is from: Ball® FreshTECH Automatic Jam & Jelly Maker (by Jarden Home Brands) (Kitchen)
Bought the FreshTECH jam & jelly maker yesterday at a brick and mortar store that had it on sale for $79. I was convinced by the unanimous five-star reviews on Amazon. I'm going to ruin this product's perfect record, though. I was disappointed upon opening the box and carefully looking for documentation. There was none. Zero. Zilch. Not even how to assemble the lid, which luckily wasn't that difficult. But you do need some basic instructions to know how to use the product. Half a star off for that. I found the web site freshpreserving.com listed on the box, so was able to get basic instructions and recipes there, but buyers shouldn't have to do that.

The most serious issue for my use, though, is the batch size and the instructions to "process immediately" after ladling into jars. This is OK for freezer jams/jellies and for those that will only be refrigerated. But if you want to make canned jams, which IMHO are much more convenient as gifts, then processing only four cups at a time in a large hot-water bath canner is very inefficient. Another half star off for that. I'll probably only use it for freezer or refrigerator jams from now on, going back to the often painful process of cooking jam on the stovetop for canning.

Other than that, no complaints. The jams produced were excellent. I used Ball's "RealFruit Low or No-Sugar Needed Pectin," even though the documentation I downloaded doesn't specify which RealFruit pectin to use (there are several choices). Using one cup sugar and one cup no-calorie sweetener (maltodextrin/sucralose) per batch, wild blackberry jam tastes pretty much like wild blackberries.

UPDATE: I'm updating my review from four to five stars, same as all the other reviewers (so far). My first half-point deduction, for no documentation, was handled nicely by Ball/Jarden, including sending me a $5 coupon. Thanks, I used it. My second criticism, regarding inconvenient batch size, was easily handled by buying a smaller canner. Duh! Been using a large canner so long, it just didn't occur to me to get a smaller pot with the appropriate rack. I now have one that cans four regular or wide-mouth jars at a time, plus it heats faster than the big one and fits nicely on the range. Perfect!
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DOES WHAT IT CLAIMS!, September 9, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Ball® FreshTECH Automatic Jam & Jelly Maker (by Jarden Home Brands) (Kitchen)
I just purchased this BELL FreshTECH JAM & JELLY MAKER right here on Amazon.com and this thing really does what it claims it will do. I made 2 batches of Red Raspberry and 2 batches of Strawberry Jam today for my first go at this "new toy" of mine and I LOVE THIS APPLIANCE...THANKS for making this thing. I now have a total of 18 half pints of delicious jam and I can't wait to make more. My next batch is probably going to be fresh peach jam and I may try pineapple (even though they don't have a recipe in the recipe book I may use another recipe to see if it will work. If anyone is on the fence about making this item a purchase, go for it because it does a super job!!!!
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88 of 103 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Successful Winner!, June 23, 2012
This review is from: Ball® FreshTECH Automatic Jam & Jelly Maker (by Jarden Home Brands) (Kitchen)
We just finished our first batch of jelly in our new FreshTech Jam & Jelly Maker. Closely following the enclosed recipe, our efforts yielded two pints of grape jelly. The smell of cooking grapes brought back memories of an ungodly hot, humid Midwest August kitchen from my youth when mother spent weeks putting up jar after jar of jellies and vegetables fresh from the market. Crowding her canning into a few short weeks to take full advantage of seasonal fresh fruit and produce available only a brief time. All deliciously enjoyed in cold winter months, but paid for with weeks of gruelling 14-hour days and heat prostration. A stark contrast to the leisurely, enjoyable effort with the FreshTech Jam & Jelly Maker. Indeed, the same afternoon, our second effort resulted in two pints of pepper jelly.

Allowing jellies to cool, we cut slices of homemade bread, anxious to sample our efforts. Smells like jelly. First bite, good. Has the consistency of jelly. Second bite, really good. Definitely jelly! Third bite, DELICIOUS! Great jelly! Between bites we planned future jams and jellies in our FreshTech Jam & Jelly Maker. Strawberry! Plum! Apple! Pear! Peach! Raspberry! Citrus! Hot pepper jelly! Made with fresh fruit in season, frozen fruit in off season. Our own jams and jellies whenever we want! Gifts for holidays! But best of all, no more of the store-bought small jars of expensive, overly sugared, under flavored stuff we've come to accept as jam and jelly. Congratulations! You have a full flavored, easily prepared, even easier to use, enjoyable winner!
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jam made easy, June 18, 2012
This review is from: Ball® FreshTECH Automatic Jam & Jelly Maker (by Jarden Home Brands) (Kitchen)
I can't believe how simple making jam can be with this gadget, it's almost foolproof. Love it. If you are a person who ever thought of making preserves the easy way then buy one of these.
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34 of 38 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great product but having trouble getting jelly to set, January 8, 2013
This review is from: Ball® FreshTECH Automatic Jam & Jelly Maker (by Jarden Home Brands) (Kitchen)
I love certain things about this product. The ease of setting it up, letting it stir itself & everything being timed is great. I'm not seeing reviews stating the problems I've had. First, the lower sugar recipe in the instruction book (I was making apple jelly) never set up. I had to remake the batch & add the extra sugar to get it to set. Now, I've used the recipe for pepper jelly (also in the instruction book), followed it to the letter, and this batch is also not setting up. I measured carefully & followed the instructions carefully. I also bought new pectin. The expiration date for this pectin is 7/15. I've been canning for many years. I never had these problems when I was making jelly the "old fashioned way".
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Product! No mess!, October 10, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Ball® FreshTECH Automatic Jam & Jelly Maker (by Jarden Home Brands) (Kitchen)
Works as stated. No stirring, no worry, no mess. Quick and painless. It would be great if it made more, but I find in the time it is working, I can get my next batch ready to go. There was no down time between my batches and I didn't have to clean up the stove from boil overs or splats nor did I have to nurse burn wounds on my hands. Yeah!!
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48 of 56 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love this thing, June 18, 2012
By 
J. L. Morgan (Fort Worth, TX USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Ball® FreshTECH Automatic Jam & Jelly Maker (by Jarden Home Brands) (Kitchen)
I am new to home canning and jams. So far in the first week of owning the Ball Automatic Jam and Jelly maker, I've made two batches of Strawberry jam and I'm in love with this litte gadget. The five stars is because it does exactly what it claims. However, I wish it came with a recipe book or at least a tutorial on how to convert others recipes.

Here's the variations I've had success with so far.

I Made a batch of strawberry jalapeno jam using their recipe and adding 7 minced jalapenos from my garden along with the juice of a fesh squeezed lemon. It was perfect ! Then I made another batch using the strawberry jam recipe again. This time I added about 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar and about a half teaspoon of cracked black pepper. It turned out perfect again. I highly recommend this automatic jam maker for anyone wanting to make small batches of 4-5 pints of homemade jam or jelly.
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