My favorite thing to make in summer is Jams and lots of it. Fresh fruit is abundant in summer and the best way to take advantage of it is by relishing on Jams. Sharing three of my favorite Jam recipes off late. Hope you like them too! These are a definite keepers if I write my own cookbook someday!
Making jam is very easy and I don't use Pectin as fruits have lots of pectin in them so no need to buy store bought pectin packets. These recipes have same bases except the ingredients and once you know the technique, you can practically make jams of any fruit and keep on re-inventing new combinations that supports your taste buds.
So read on further.....
1. Triple Berry Jam
I recently bought a big bunch of fresh berries mainly Blackberries, Blueberries and Raspberries from farmers market and wanted to finish them all before they get stale, so I thought of making this easy Triple Berry Jam.
Ingredients (Makes approximately 10 oz/a small size of store bought jam bottle)
1 cup fresh blueberries
1 1/2 cups fresh blackberries
1 cup fresh raspberries
1/4 tsp bottled lemon juice
2 cups sugar
1/4 cup water
You can use frozen berries instead of fresh ones here and there won't be much change to the taste. You may have to cook it longer to reduce the amount of water.
1. In a large saucepan, boil water.
2. Add berries and lemon juice; crush slightly. Bring to a full rolling boil over high heat, stirring constantly for about 10-15 minutes or until the jam reaches 220 F on a candy thermometer (or 8 F above the boiling point of water at your particular altitude).
There are other ways to test for jam. See the Notes at the end of the Blog post.
3. Stir in sugar; return to a full rolling boil. Boil and stir 1 minute.
4. Let the jam cool before transferring it to a clean jar.
5. This jam will keep for about 3 weeks in the fridge and 2 to 3 months in the freezer.
To clean Glass bottle and remove its label
Place jars into simmering water, ensuring that they are completely covered with water. Bring to a boil; process for 10 minutes. Remove jars and cool.
2. Ginger Blueberry Jam
This turned out to be an experiment that turned out to be surprisingly delicious. The sweetness and tanginess of the blueberries mixed with the spiciness of ginger makes this a perfect jam for those scones.
2 cups fresh blueberries
1 cups sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 tbsp ground ginger
1. In a sauce pan, mash the blueberries. Stir in sugar and lemon juice. Bring to a full rolling boil over high heat, stirring constantly for another 10-12 minutes.
2. Remove from the heat. Stir in ground ginger.
3. Let the Jam mixture cool down for 10 minutes and then transfer to a clean glass jar.
3. Raspberry Mint Jam
I was planning to make only raspberry jam but then I saw so many mint leaves growing in my garden that were turning yellow and I was not using them much so thought of throwing in fresh mint into the mixture with raspberries and the cooling, refreshing taste of this jam is a must have during those hot, scorching summer days.
2 cups fresh raspberries
1 cups sugar
1/2 teaspoon butter
2 tbsps. minced fresh mint
1. In a sauce pan, combine raspberries, sugar and butter. Bring to a full rolling boil over high heat, stirring constantly for 1o-12 minutes.
2. Stir in mint and boil for another 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and let the jam cool before transferring to a clean glass jar.
1. How to Test Jam for Done-ness
Temperature: Attach a candy thermometer to the pan and cook the jam to 220 F, or 8 F above the boiling point. For every 1000 feet of altitude above sea level, subtract 2 F.
Freezer Test: Put a few small plates in the freezer. Near the end of the cooking time, begin to test. Drop a small dollop of jam on an ice-cold plate. Put it back in the freezer for about 2 minutes. If the jam forms a "skin" and wrinkles slightly when gently prodded with your finger, the jam is done. If it is still runny and your finger easily makes a trail through it, continue cooking and test again after few more minutes.
Cold Spoon Test: Put a few metal spoons in the refrigerator. Dip a cold spoon into the boiling mixture and lift it over the pan. Let it run off the spoon. When a few drops come together and "sheet" off the spoon, the jam is done.
2. Sugar Alternatives
You can use Agave or Honey for this jam. While adding these syrups, do not add them while the fruits are on heat. Remove from heat and them add your syrup and mix well.
Remember Agave is sweeter than sugar so use it accordingly.
Also, honey should never be consumed hot so it's better to remove the fruits from heat and then add in the honey.
3. What Fruits Can You Jam?
Citrus, like oranges and kumquats. Citrus, particularly orange, is high in pectin.
Pome fruit, including apples and pears.
Berries, like strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries.
Stone fruit, like apricot.
Tropical fruits, like pineapple and passionfruit.
4. Does lemon juice thicken jam?
The lemon juice lowers the pH of the jam mixture, which also neutralizes those negative charges on the strands of pectin, so they can now assemble into a network that will “set” your jam.
5. Can I make jam using frozen fruit?
Frozen fruit can be used very successfully, however, if the fruit is wet, or over-ripe, and then frozen, this may result in runny jam.