Can we eat jam?
The best tips and tricks for successful jam
- The main ingredient for any jam or jam is fully ripe fruit. You can only cook a fruity jam from the fully ripe fruits that have a full aroma and contain sufficient fructose.
- I prefer to buy my fruit from the farm or in a farm shop. Since most farmers do not have large warehouses, the quality is much better than in a supermarket. Depending on the type of fruit, fresh produce from the tree is even available daily from the farmer.
- The fruit should have a full taste. Small breaks will not do any harm as long as there is no mold, as everything will be overcooked.
2. It all depends on the mix
- Jams also taste very good mixed. You don't always have to boil down single-variety jams. Apricot-peach, strawberry-blackberry or elderberry-pear are just a few examples.
3. Spices, Herbs & Alcohol
- Creativity is required! Refine your own creations with various spices. How about strawberry chilli, apricot cinnamon or rhubarb ginger?
- Ideal spices for boiling down are cinnamon, ginger, vanilla, lavender, rose petals, cardamom, pepper or clove.
- Citrus fruits are also very suitable for preserving. Whether orange, lime or lemon, the fresh taste and the slight acidity improve every jam. Use the peel or zest for more citrus flavor, or the freshly squeezed juice for more acidity in the jam.
- Even fresh herbs can be cooked. Whether orange-rosemary or apricot-thyme, there are no limits to the imagination.
- Jams taste particularly intense with a dash of alcohol. Whether cognac, straw rum, Grand Marnier, apricot liqueur or brandy, alcohol rounds off the taste and leaves a fine aftertaste.
4. Jars & lids
- Preserved jams are supposed to last a long time so that we can eat them outside of the harvest season. In order for jams to keep well, good hygiene when cooking is essential.
- It is best to wash the jars and lids very hot in the dishwasher or by hand. Those who work particularly carefully can also boil and sterilize the jars.
- Dry the lids well after washing to prevent mold from forming. Ideally, you should always use a new lid, as the lids are never 100% leak-proof after being opened for the first time. If a lid rotates when closing, that lid is broken and should no longer be used. Glasses, on the other hand, can be used indefinitely.
5. Boil down properly
- Boil the jam for only a few minutes (5 to 10) at a time. The color and aroma can only be retained if the cooking time is short. If a foam forms, please skim it off.
- Depending on your taste, you can lightly or completely puree the jam with the hand blender or fill it with the whole fruit.
6. Make it durable
- When the jam has finished cooking, it must be filled hot. There are two methods of preservation.
The classic method: pour hot jam into jars, close carefully. After turning it, turn the jam upside down and turn it upside down.
The fire method: After filling it, put a small amount of high-percentage alcohol (e.g. Stroh 60) on the jam and light it. Then immediately put the lid on. The flame burns the remaining air, sucks in the lid and creates "a kind of vacuum". Do not turn glasses upside down.
7. Gelling agent
- For preserving, you need a gelling agent so that a boiled liquid can be turned into a jam. The easiest way to boil it down is with preserving sugar, as it contains a little pectin. Pectin is a natural gelling agent that is mainly found in apples.
- Instead of preserving sugar, you can also use honey, maple syrup, agave syrup or cane sugar. Now you need to add pectin separately. Pectin can be bought in the pharmacy, health food store or health food store.
8. Marinate the fruits
- Fruits become particularly aromatic when they are marinated overnight. Mix the peeled, cut fruits with lemon juice, gelling agent, alcohol or spices and let it steep.
- It is best to store jam in a cool place and out of direct sunlight, in the pantry, in the cupboard or in the basement. If the jam has been boiled down well, it will keep for at least 1 year. You can store it for a longer period of time, but over time it loses its color brilliance and aroma.
- After opening, the jam can be kept in the refrigerator for a few weeks. Always use a clean spoon when removing to avoid mold.
- To avoid confusion, label all jams with the type and production date.
Have fun cooking!
The video with all tips & tricks:
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