Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Bottling Fruit

The bottling fruit with Anne Elliot last Saturday proved very successful. Bottling is so easy!

We went over all the sterilising: first make sure the bottle has no chips or cracks; wash jars, elastic rubber rings and sound metal lids and rinse all well; place in 150 degree C oven for 20 mins; fill bottles with fruit while still warm; Anne suggested using a medium syrup (1 cup of sugar to 2 cups of water)* over the packed fruit; cover and clip the bottles and set in the steriliser (pressure cooker, large pan or special equipment — see below); cook as recommended (different times for different fruits). Depending on your equipment the syrup will be cold (in special equipment, 10–30 mins, see below) or hot (quick deep pan method 2–20 mins; or pressure-cooked, 1–5 mins). There are oven methods too. I advise consulting a book.

*Fruit can be bottled in water, and honey, stevia or golden syrup can substitute for sugar.

Preserved lemons — simply bottled in salt were another delicacy we learned to make. Again, so easy!

Lindsay, in Katoomba Country Brewer, Shop 2, 101 Katoomba Street (i.e. behind Katoomba Street), stocks Ball and Fowlers Vacola bottling equipment, bottles, wax, pectin, etc. Contact him on (02) 4782 3000 or katoomba@countrybrewer.com.au

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We can harvest a wide range of fruits and nuts locally each season.

Local fruit and/or nut gardeners are invited to make additions or suggest modifications to the following work-in-progress compiled by Lizzie Connor.


Across the mountains: loquat, mulberry, rhubarb, strawberry and (in late spring) raspberry

Best in the lower mountains: avocado, jaboticaba, lemonade


Across the mountains: apricot, blueberry, boysenberry, cherry, currant (red, black, white), gooseberry, kumquat, loganberry, loquat, mulberry,nectarine, peach, plum, raspberry, rhubarb, strawberry and (in late summer) almond, apple, fig, hazelnut, passionfruit, pear (incl. nashi), pomegranate, youngberry

Best in lower mountains:lemon (Eureka), lemonade, lime, mandarin, orange, persimmon (non-astringent) and (in late summer) avocado, babaco, macadamia, rockmelon, wampee, watermelon

Best in upper mountains: jostaberry, lemon (Meyer), persimmon (astringent)


Across the mountains: almond, apple, chestnut, feijoa, fig, grape, hazel, kiwi fruit, kumquat, medlar, olive, passionfruit, pear (incl. nashi), plum, quince, raspberry (some), rhubarb, strawberry, strawberry guava, walnut

Best in lower mountains: avocado, babaco, cherimoya, grapefruit, lemon (Eureka), macademia, monstera deliciosa, orange, pine nut, pistachio, rockmelon, tamarillo, walnut, watermelon, white sapote

Best in upper mountains: lemon (Meyer), mandarin (Satsuma)


Across the mountains: apple, hazelnut, kiwi fruit, kumquat, pear (incl. nashi)

Best in lower mountains: grapefruit, lemon (Eureka), orange, tangelo

Best in upper mountains: avocado (Bacon), lemon (Meyer)