Tuesday, 12 August 2014
My favourite Apricot Jam
Out of all the jams I’ve ever made, my favourite one is Apricot Jam and of course it has to be homemade. It’s such a useful jam as a glaze or seal between layers of cakes. Now we can get apricots on the local market at the height of summer, I can’t resist buying enough to make a few pots. Here’s Grandma’s recipe. It’s an easy one and sets well. I made this batch in under an hour.
Grandma’s rule was approximately 1 lb (450g) (caster or jam) sugar and 1 tbsp lemon juice and ¼ pint water for each 1lb (450g) of fruit.
Wash the fruit, remove the stones and cut into quarters. Crack open about 3-4 of the stones to remove the kernels. Blanch these in a small pan of boiling water for about 2 minutes. Place the fruit, blanched kernels, lemon juice and water in a jam pan or a large heavy saucepan. Simmer for approximately 20 minutes, or until the apricots are softening. Remove the kernels with a slotted spoon, once they have risen to the surface. Add the sugar and continue to heat gently, stirring until it has dissolved. Add a knob of butter and boil for about 15 minutes. Test for setting. Leave to cool for around 30 minutes then pot into sterilised jars and cover.
I’m always inspired by the vast array of jams at the wonderful Hotel Diderot in Chinon which you get chance to taste at breakfast time each morning. Laurent and his family have a long tradition of jam making for over 40 years and have published a book dedicated to their wonderful recipes called Jam in the Cupboard. Have you got a family favourite jam recipe to share?