Seasonal Recipes -
A glut of rhubarb – and I was fed up with the usual round of Rhubarb recipes – also truth to tell I was thinking about how one makes Jam. I had met a lady over the weekend who thought that it was rather a case of applied magic that turned fruit into jam. I tried to convince her that it was not alchemy but a case of simply putting fruits together and seeing what turns out! I can hear the multitudes saying “Oh no it isn’t” but my reply is “Oh yes it is”! So I decided to experiment and see if it were possible to “do it in the microwave” after all that is how I make my curds so this is what I did ...
You will need
1 lb.plus (or ½ kg) strawberries, (I even used frozen fruits!)
1 lb plus (or ½ kg) rhubarb. (washed and dried with a kitchen towel)
1 kg bag of Jam sugar with pectin
If the strawberries are rather large chop them up into (roughly) dice sized pieces
Cut the rhubarb into finger width pieces
Put these into a plastic bowl in the microwave and zap on low for five minutes at a time until the fruit is boiling and the rhubarb has started to break down. Stir with a wooden spoon in-
Add about three-
Add the remaining sugar, bring the jam back to boiling point (a couple of minutes at a time on low).
When it is boiling through test a small puddle of the “juice” on a cold saucer and leave for five minutes or so when it should wrinkle when pushed with your finger; if it does bring the jam back up to temperature (on low for another minute or so)
Pour the jam carefully into clean dry jars and seal immediately.
This quantity makes about 3½ lb of a beautiful deep red jam.
It is so easy to make I would advise that you do not double up the quantities, but make more when you need it, keep spare fruit in bags in the freezer and pull it our when needed.
That comment rather beggars my response to folk when I am asked “how long will it last” my initial response is always “it depends on how long it takes you to eat it!”
I hope that it tastes as good as it looks and that you enjoy trying something different!
Christine Gledhill has produced two books with FLAG Publishing Ltd:
Mrs G’s Jams Today & Jam Tommorrow
Mrs G’s Figgy Pudding & Fine Foods
Both Books are currently available Priced at £10 plus P&P
This is the season for elderflowers so gather them while you may and then when the gooseberries are available you can make Gooseberry & Elderflower, a beautiful jam. Collect the flowers by cutting the heads and dropping into a bag, try not to shake them or this dislodges the pollen. 15 heads will make about a quart of stock. Put the heads into a sauce pan. Cover with water and quickly drain it off, re-
You will need:
1¾ pint of the decanted elderflower juice
4½ lb of sugar.
Cook the gooseberries in the elderflower juice for about 15 minutes, in an aluminium pan.
Add the sugar and bring to the boil.
Initially boil gently to allow the deep pink colour to develop, towards the end raise the temperature and boil until you get a good set.
Pour into clean dry jars and seal. This will make about 8lb of jam which if kept cool and dark will keep for well over a year. It does tend to get rather rubbery after a year but the taste is still there.
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