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Saturday, October 3, 2015

Preserving your Summer Fruits: Jam Session

summer fruits to preserve

Fall is already knocking on your doors, you still have a bunch of left over summer fruits and you don`t know what to do with them. Does this situation kind of sound familiar to you?
Then I have the perfect idea, how you can rid of them! 
Actually not by throwing the fruits away, that would be a sin, but by making deliciously sweet jams out of them. Preserving is such a fast and easy method to get the best out of your fruits. Your finished product will be full of flavours and sweetness coming from your favourite summer fruits, such a nice and convenient way to prevent them to be thrown away. 

You`ll really appreciate this during the dark and cold days, this time of the year when you just seek for sun and all the odours and flavours that remind you of summer. That`s when you smear a thick layer of your summer fruit jam on your bread and just enjoy that amazing moment of summer feeling.

redcurrant, raspberry & rose jam

Honestly there`s a huge variety of fruits to choose from, just go with your favourite ones and make sure to check the how well your ingredients gel. It`s always better to combine a fruit that gels poorly with one that gels very well, as you want a jam with a thick texture, not a runny one. 
I went and made three different jams one with redcurrants, raspberries and roses, one  with peaches and small yellow plums and a simple one with strawberries, but feel free to do other combinations. The procedure remains the same for all fruits anyway.

Preparation:
  • preheat the oven at 200° degrees
  • peel and core your fruits if necessary, rinse them off with cold water, cut them into pieces
  • mash your fruits with a blender if you like, I prefer to leave out that step or do it at the end of the preserving process if it results to be necessary
  • sterilize your jars in the oven for about 10 to 20 minutes, let cool down at room temperature
  • preserve your fruits with the canning sugar or regular sugar with one sachet gelling agent (something similar to Gelfix), first over high heat until boiling up, then at medium heat for 20 to 30 minutes, if foam builds on top of your mixture, skim it of and make sure to regularly stir your jam, also be cautious as the mixture can seriously burn you, when boiling
  • this is also the moment you want to add your aromatics, like spices for example
  • fill your jam into your jars, close them immediately and turn your jars upside down, this way the hot jam kills all the remaining germs on the jar lid
  • it`s best to place your jars in a sink to fill them, in case a jar breaks, another possibility is to put a silver or any other metallic spoon into your jar and then fill in the jam
  • you can store it unopened in the fridge for several months, once opened always check if there is any mold on your jam, if this is the case throw it away
peach & small yellow plum jam

What you need (approximately 3 jars for each jam):

redcurrant raspberry rose jam 
  • 500g redcurrants
  • 250g raspberries
  • 350g jam sugar or regular sugar, if you use regular sugar, add about one sachet of a gelling agent
  • 2 to 4 tea spoons rose water
  • jars
peaches & small yellow plum jam
  • 350g peaches
  • 350g small yellow plums
  • 350g jam sugar or regular sugar with one sachet of a gelling agent
  • jars
strawberry jam
  • 750g strawberries
  • 350g jam sugar or regular sugar with one sachet of a gelling agent 
  • jars

strawberry jam


These jams also make a perfect gift, just label them, wrap the lid with some fancy fabric and there you go!

By the way during fall is the perfect time to jar all your vegetables and fruits. So why not organize a preserving day with your friends or family, would be pretty funny, don`t you think? You could even make this a yearly Fall tradition. 

read you soon,
xoxo




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