Thursday, 5 July 2007

Cherry Jam

cherry jam

I used about a kilo of cherries, sour morellos, with a kilo of jam sugar (the sort with added pectin), about 300 to 500g of redcurrants.

Pit your cherries, this takes ages so round up some helpers and some extra cherry stoners. My kilo took about an hour on my own. Try to catch all the juice as you work. You won't succeed so make sure your apron covers all your clothing and protect precious work surfaces.

Put the stones and the redcurrants into a small pan and simmer gently until the currants have completely disintegrated. I was using frozen redcurrants from a couple of years ago so had my doubts about their pectin content, hence the pectin enhanced sugar, but if your redcurrants are fresh this should be sufficient to set the batch.

Then I think I made an error, I added half a pint (300 ml) of water. The cherries were so juicy that this seems unnecessary in hindsight. Anyway, strain your redcurrant juice into a very large pan and add the cherries, their juice and the sugar. If you were using sweet cherries you might consider adding the juice of a lemon at this point. I also cracked some cherry stones and added the kernels to the pot, about half a dozen are sufficient.

On a gentle heat stir until the sugar is completely dissolved and then allow to come to a full boil, stirring frequently. With the pectin sugar it was only necessary to boil the jam for 4 minutes before a setting point was reached, without it you will have to use your favourite method of judging when the jam is done. I usually put a little on a cold plate, wait a moment and then gently push the spot with my finger. If wrinkles form the jam is ready to pot. If you boil hard for much more than 15 minutes the flavour and texture will be damaged and you may end up with toffee.

Pot into clean warm jars. A typical jam maker's fault is demonstrated in my pots, all the fruit has floated to the surface. There are ways of avoiding this but I don't seem to be able to achieve them. It tastes good anyway. Yield would have been 4 x 340g sized jars but because of the extra water I had a small jar of cherry and redcurrant jelly left over!

This should keep well in a cool dark place if properly sealed, but will be better for refrigeration after opening.

1 comment:

Paul said...

The cherry and redcurrant is yummy too.