Living in Orchard country means to me, putting down fresh fruit for the winter. One of our favourites is Jam. Bop, my sweetheart, loves jam and what better way than to make it ourselves. You know what goes into it and you can keep the sugar down as well.
I have used this same recipe for both apricot and plum jam. Just three ingredients; fruit, sugar and lemon juice.
Wash your fruit and make sure they are ripe but not bruised. You can cut out bruised bits. Chop your fruit into smallish chucks, I don’t peel them. You will want 12 cups of chopped fruit. Put this into a large pot, add sugar and lemon juice. With Apricots I also added a few pits, I have heard it said they have natural pectin, I’m not sure about that, but we have always done it that way! If you decide you want to do that, be sure to count how many pits you put in. I used eight so I always knew how many to take out.
Stir it all together and bring to a boil over medium to low heat. I don’t like to rush things in case it burns. You need to watch and stir fairly often. Add in your candy thermometer to keep a close eye on the temperature until it reaches 220 degrees. But check for your altitude. A good guide I found for you was this: http://www.portlandpreserve.com/testingthejellypoint.pdf
Keep your jars hot and be sure to sterilize the sealers. I boil them in a small pot and keep them on simmer until I need them. With my jars, I have them washed and then pour boiling water into them just before use. It keeps them from cracking with the heat of the jam.
Fill your jars fairly full, leaving about a 1/4″ head room. Wipe off any spills with a clean damp cloth, then put on the hot sealers and add the rings. Set your hot jars on a tea towel or cutting board to cool and wait for that wonderful sound of the “pop” of sealed jam.
- 12 cups of chopped fruit
- 4-5 cups sugar
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- Put chopped fruit into a heavy bottomed saucepan
- Add sugar, and lemon juice.
- Stir over med heat until the sugar is dissolved.
- Bring the mixture to a full rolling boil.
- Boil, on med heat stirring often, until the mixture reaches 220 degrees F.
- Transfer to hot sterile jars, leaving 1/4 to 1/2 inch headspace, and seal.
- Process in a water bath 10 minutes for storing.
- If the jam is going to be eaten right away just refrigerate.
Because we like our jam fairly runny; more like a heavy syrup; I only cook my jam to appx 215 degrees. More to the sheeting stage. For more information, I found this on line for you to look over: http://www.portlandpreserve.com/testingthejellypoint.pdf