Why Would You Can Simple Syrup?
It may sound odd to “can” simple syrups, but let me tell you why I do it. When I have an abundance of fruit, it is a really easy way to use it up quickly while making something versatile at the same time. Simple syrup can be used:
- in cocktails
- to sweeten ice tea & lemonade
- to create “soda” (mix with sparkling water)
- in desserts
- as a glaze on cakes
- as a glaze on chicken
- drizzled over fruit, ice cream or yogurt
- the list goes on and on
By canning the syrups in 1/2-pint jars, you can just open a jar anytime you need just a cup for a few recipes. The syrups are there on your pantry shelf, ready to go – even in the dead of winter.
Now you can make simple syrups from just about anything, but I think rhubarb-vanilla syrup is just this side of heaven. It is by far the most amazing thing you will ever add to your tea. I swear!
Watch the video above to see how easy it is. The printable recipe is below.
Rhubarb Vanilla Simple Syrup
Makes 4 (1/2 pint) jars
- 6 cups fresh or frozen rhubarb
- 1 1/2 cup water
- 3 cups sugar
- 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 tsp. ground cardamom
- 1/2 vanilla bean – split
1) In a medium-sized saucepan, combine rhubarb and water. Cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes or until rhubarb is broken down.
2) Strain through cheesecloth. For clear syrup, do not press the rhubarb. Instead let the mixture sit overnight to strain. Or if you do not mind a little cloudiness or if you are in a hurry, let the mixture sit for about 20-30 minutes. Then, press the rhubarb with a wooden spoon to release the juices. Discard the pulp.
3) Fill your water bath canner with water and heat it up. Add your clean jars to the bath to heat while you continue the recipe. Prepare your 2-piece canning lids in a pan of warm water.
4) Measure the strained liquid and more water if necessary to make 3 cups. If you have a bit more than 3 cups, use whatever amount you end up with. (It does not have to be exact.)
5) Pour the 3 cups of liquid to a saucepan and add 3 cups of sugar. Add lemon juice and cardamom. Take the split vanilla bean and scrape out the seeds. Add the seeds and split bean to the pan. Bring the mixture to a simmer until sugar is dissolved (about 5 minutes). Remove vanilla bean (and save it for something else).
6) At this point you can stop and use the simple syrup. Just store the remainder in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. Or you can continue with canning the syrup and it will last on the pantry shelf for up to a year.
7) Remove your hot jars from the water bath and fill with the hot syrup. Leave 1/4-inch headspace. Wipe the rims and add your lids and rings. Process in the canner for 10 minutes. Turn off the canner and let it sit 5 minutes with the lid off. Then remove the jars and let them cool on a wooden board.
For more canning tips and recipes, visit my canning blog.