Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Blueberry Apricot Jam- My Very First Post Revisited
My pictures were terrible- actually my first couple of posts didn't even have photos- and it took me a while to find "my voice". I was comfortable sharing about my food, but not so much about myself. Throughout the past 97 posts (97!! Wow!), I've learned how to just be me. I'm interesting enough. My thoughts are good enough. And the food speaks for itself. That's a pretty amazing realization.
I'm a long way from the polished and professional looking blogs that I adore. I don't have a following of zillions of foodies or a book in the works and I haven't been published in any magazines. You know what? I'm okay with that. I know I have a few dedicated readers who enjoy following along in my journey and some wonderful friends and family who encourage me to keep it up. I've discovered that that's enough for me. In fact, it's just right. This blog may be small and unassuming, but it's mine and it makes me happy. What else could a girl ask for?
aprium vanilla jam. Those apriums landed in my CSA box again last week and my first instinct was to make that same vanilla jam from a year ago. But I'm a year older and a year wiser than I was then, so I decided not to go the same route. This is a bit less subtle of a jam than the original, with fresh blueberries stirred in. The vanilla jam was warm and ethereal and this jam is the complete opposite. It's sweet and tart and wonderful- and just as good slathered on a piece of toast as it is warmed and served over ice cream. I love it- well actually, I love both of them!
Adapted from The New Preserves, by Anne V. Nelson.
For a printable version, click here.
Makes 4 half-pint jars.
2 lbs apricots (you could also use apriums, peaches or nectarines), about 10, pitted and chopped
1 1/2 cups (about a pint and a half) blueberries
2 cups sugar
2 tbs lemon juice
1 tbs butter
Place all the ingredients except the butter into a large saucepan. Stir to coat the fruit in the sugar and let sit for 15-20 minutes. Add the butter to the pan. Turn the heat to medium high and let the mixture come to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and keep the mixture at a vigorous simmer, stirring frequently.
The mixture will begin to gel in about 20-25 minutes. For a very scientific method of determining readiness, use an instant read thermometer. A finished jam will reach 220 degrees. I went the non-scientific route and tested my jam with a spoon. Dip a metal spoon into the jam and then tilt it onto its side. The jam should slide off the spoon in one sheet and not several drips. Carefully fill four half pint jars with the hot jam.
Here's where you have some choices. I attempted to process my jars in a hot water bath. Following proper protocol, I boiled them away for 10 minutes. Alas, my lids didn't seal. So into the fridge they went. One jar went to a friend and one to my son's teacher. The other two are tucked away for sandwiches and the aforemetioned ice cream topping. If you'd like to try processing your jars, check out the wonderful blog Food in Jars. You'll find all kinds of great tips and links there. If not, just stick your jars in the fridge like I did and eat them up or give them away within a few weeks.