4.15.2007

Making Jam In April


" What zone does she live in to have fresh plums in April? "
These beautiful plums aren't fresh. Harvesting our vegetables and fruit during my hectic first month of school always makes it hard to find time to preserve the food as the garden explodes. A friend told me she just puts her fruit in Ziploc bags and gets to it later. I took her advice last September and just discovered the plums last week in the back of the freezer. April is later I guess. My husband and I decided to thaw them in the sink and make jam. We can't remember what kind of plums these are, but we think they may be Santa Rosas. Their color is closer to red than purple and they don't taste as sweet. I actually like the flavor better for jam. Last fall when I did have the time to cook one batch of jam the following recipe intrigued me in the Ball canning cookbook. I have confessed before that I love orange in combination with other foods. This blend of plums and orange is perfect. People have loved the new tastes in this jam. All our jars are gone so as spring is budding around our property, it seemed a good time to drag out the canner, the jars, the pot, my husband as a helper, and the ingredients and make Plum- Orange Jam. If you decide to try it you may want to wait until plums are ripe in late summer. Here is the recipe:
Plum-Orange Jam
5 cups chopped and pitted plums ( about 3 1/2 pounds)
1 tablespoon grated orange peel
1 package powdered pectin
5 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup orange liqueur
Combine plums, orange peel and pectin in a large saucepot. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Add sugar, stirring until dissolved. Return to a rolling boil. Boil hard 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Skim foam if necessary. Stir in orange liqueur. Ladle hot jam into hot jars, leaving 1/4-inch head space. Adjust two-piece caps. Process 10 minutes in a boiling-water canner. Yield: 6 half-pints.
I usually use pectin that works for other sweeteners and have used Splenda or honey instead of sugar. This time of year I didn't have much choice of pectin. I made two batches and used pint jars instead. Enjoy!

1 comment :

  1. Ok, you got me here too. My plums are still in my freezer and the canning jars are in the garage. This recipe looks so good, I may give it a try. . .

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