Why does my jelly or jam not set?
Is the recipe you used a proven recipe? If so, than ask yourself, did I follow the instructions correctly? Most failures with proven recipes occur when we deviate from the cooking instructions or the amounts called for in the recipe. If the recipe is not a proven one, I would suggest either doing some research on your recipe or find a proven recipe that will work. Click on our Technical page and read the Recipe Building section for some general rules about building jam and jelly recipes.
Why does my jelly ‘weep’?
Weeping jelly is most often caused by too much acid in the fruit or recipe in general. A low pH gel is very brittle and will squeeze water out, producing a liquid layer between the jelly and the glass. Solution: raise the pH. This can be accomplished by either omitting or reducing acidic ingredients or adding a buffer like Sodium Citrate. In some cases, switching from our Pacific Pectin Mix to our Pacific Pectin Mix no Acid will solve the problem as well.
Why do sugar crystals form on my jelly?
This problem is caused by either cooking too long, or having too much sugar in the recipe (brix are too high). Solution: shorten cook time or take some sugar out of the recipe. I would suggest making small changes. Most often it will not require much change to bring the recipe back into balance. Click on our Technical page and read the Recipe Building section for some general rules about the sugar content for recipes.
Why do my light color jams turn dark?
This is generally caused by oxidation. Our Pacific Fruit Freshener will slow this process and keep your jams looking brilliant much longer than average.
Why do I have mold on my jelly?
This problem can be caused by a few different issues:
- The jar lid was not completely sealed. Inspect the lid for a bad glue ring and inspect the glass surface for imperfections.
- The fill temperature was too low. Did you fill at a minimum of 190 degrees F°?
- The container wasn’t sterile. Did you clean your jars and lids thoroughly?
- The sugar content was too low. Sugar is a natural preservative, therefore, if you want to use less than 40% sugar I recommend our Pacific LM-O Pectin, which contains preservatives that will lengthen shelf life after opening.
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