Laurel Hill Jams & Jellies LLC
Quality Homemade Jams & Jellies Since 1960
"Crafting Jams and Jellies One Batch at a Time"
Creating homemade jams & jellies of exceptional quality is not difficult. It does require patience, attention to detail, the necessary utensils, and use of only the best ingredients available. Making one’s own preserves ensures total control over the quality of ingredients used, as well as ensuring that there are no hidden extras, such as artificial colors or flavorings. The outstanding flavor found in Laurel Hill Jams & Jellies comes directly from using the best fruits and wines available—not by skimping on the quality of any ingredient.
The fruit jams & jellies and wine jellies are quintessentially New England. Sue Stretch has been making her jams and jellies since she was a young girl growing up outside of Boston. She remembers picking beach plums with her mother during outings to the Cape.
Sue has been perfecting her preserving techniques since the 50’s when she helped her mother make jellies. After she went off to college, began teaching, got married, and had two children, she took a hiatus. In the 80’s, she began jelling and jamming again. Living in the Okanagan Valley in Washington State on the border of British Columbia, her family was surrounded by an abundance of fresh fruits—apples, pears, cherries, peaches—and more. The women there taught her a simpler process, and she discovered the enthusiasm for home canning.
Now, after 41 years of teaching, she is retired from the classroom and pursuing her hobby/business.
The name “Laurel Hill” originates from the area of Bedford where she lives—Birchwood Circle. Laurel Hill is named on the topographical map of Bedford. The magnificent evergreen flowering shrub “Mountain Laurel” with its light/pink to white flowers blossoms around June 15th and surrounds her home. All products are made at her Laurel Hill home.
Farmers’ markets are a great source for excellent quality produce that is perfect for home canning. Most farmers’ markets require that produce be grown locally and that the growers use no pesticides. Also, one may find delicious fruits grown in local nurseries/gardens.
Jams and jellies share two things in common. They are each made with fruit (or wine) that is preserved with sugar and pectin, and they are all jellied or set to a greater or lesser degree.
Jellies are made from a clear liquid. The fruits (such as apples, crabapples, peaches, pears, grapes,) are steamed to make the clear juice, and then processed into a translucent spread.
Jams are made with the fruit in them. The fruits (such as strawberries) are crushed or chopped and cooked with sugar to create a preserve.
Wine jellies are merely wine, sugar, and pectin.
Pectin is a water soluble substance that is found in the tissues of all fruits. Pectin is a natural thickening and jelling agent. It is what makes the jams and jellies jell.
Sue Stretch has lived in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Wisconsin, Churchill and Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, and Washington State. Her husband, Jerry, is a retired Episcopal Priest. She has two married children and four grandchildren.
Accolades: In the July 2007 issue of NH Magazine, Laurel Hill’s Strawberry Jam was Top Pick of the five jams tasted. “New Hampshire Stuff—Jamming in NH…One staff member said this is a real jelly with a real jar…This jelly has large chunks of strawberry, a reusable canning jar and a sweet, fresh taste. If you like your jams and jellies on the tart side, this is not the one for you. Another staff member declared this jelly classic.”
These products make excellent corporate gifts and wedding /bridal shower favors and are packaged according to one's wishes. Personalized labels are available.
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