Have you, like me, been making wonderfully fresh and delicious home made jam from all the fantastic produce available in the summer, perhaps from garden or allotment? I simply love loading up the cupboards with jars of jewel coloured preserves.
Home Made Jam
Recently, I’ve made seedless loganberry jam from the enthusiastic loganberry in the garden; some glorious blackcurrant jam from the single bush in the garden; and my husbands favourite, fresh apricot jam. This is very good indeed, better than even the premium preserves, and much cheaper.
Uses for your wonderful home made jam
Other than butter laden toast and crumpets, or the classic scone, cream and jam, gorgeous as they are, what else can you use your lovely preserves for? Here are some ideas from around the interweb to give you suggestions and inspiration. If I find any more I particularly like, I’ll add them in, so come back and check another time.
- 1. Jam tarts. The classic, and for a reason. Crispy, short pastry, rich, fruity jam. What could be better! Possibly grey, rubbery pastry with either too much or too little jam, made by small enthusiastic hands, with love.
- 2. Stuffed French toast, an occasional treat this, perhaps when friends are over, or for a birthday treat. Oh so good!
- 3. Baked Jam sponge. A lovely weekend pudding, perhaps after a Sunday lunch. Simply spoon some jam in the base of a dish and cover with a sponge topping. Bake until golden and serve with custard, cream or ice cream. A real rib sticker! You could even match your ice cream to your jam, so raspberry jam base with raspberry ice cream, Fancy or what!
- 4. Victoria sponge filling. Use your home made jam as the filling in a home made Victoria sponge, with some whipped cream. A classic combination for a very good reason, It tastes awesome!
- 5. Mixed with yogurt. I have found that a tablespoon (which is 2 Syns on Slimming World) mixed into a fat free plain yogurt, tastes very like those expensive little pots of yogurt with corners, usually around the 50p mark, for just 150g. Perfect for lunch boxes, snacks, breakfast etc
- 6. These Jammy oat bars are tasty oaty bars filled with jam in the middle. They are great for grab and go breakfasts, lunchboxes and after school snacks. Cheap and easy to make and you know exactly what’s in them, no nasty additives.
- 7. What could be nicer than a classic Bakewell Tart. This is Mary Berry’s version. Crispy pastry base, and lovely home made jam topped with an almondy sponge- gorgeous.
- 8. Of all the things I found using home made jam, this Giant Wagon Wheel has got to be my favourite. OMG I want one right now. It only uses 3 heaped tblsps, but I couldn’t leave it out!
- 9. Swirl it through homemade ice cream. This recipe doesn’t need any fancy equipment, just stir and freeze
- 10. Kathryn, one of the lovely members of the Thrifty Lesley Facebook Group, had this genius idea to use the apricot jam she had made using the recipe here. A mock mango chutney by stirring in some cider vinegar. She also made a really lovely glaze and sauce on some lamb steaks by mixing her apricot jam with some home-blend rosemary honey and trusty old cider vinegar. They sound fab!
Savoury jams are having a real moment right now, and these three are some of my favourites. What an amazing addition to a deli board lunch one of these beauties would make, or how about in a big soft sandwich. Ooh, nom nom!
Bacon Jam anyone? This recipe from Dan Doherty and Olive magazine looks like it would taste amazing!
A fabulous tomato jam
And I simply love the idea of this spicy red pepper jam!
I’ll be trying these very soon !
Making Home Made Jam Yourself
If you’ve been inspired to have a go at making jam yourself, you will need a couple of things to get you going.
A thick bottomed saucepan or preserving pan that can withstand the very high temperatures. If you are just going to be making a couple of jars at a time, a heavy bottomed saucepan will do you fine. Make sure its big enough. Overflowing boiling jam goes everywhere, sticks to everything and burning sugar really stinks! I did this recently while trying to see to boiling jam and talk on the phone at the same time. It went everywhere!
A sturdy wooden spoon
You don’t need a thermometer to make jam, but a good one is really useful when testing for the setting temperature and is really useful for testing if meat is cooked through as well.
I never buy jam jars. I always use ones that we’ve emptied. If you don’t have any yourself ask around, or put a request into Freegle, there always seem to be plenty in one way or another. Make sure they are extremely clean and sterilised or your beautiful jam may go mouldy, which would be a bit of a disappointment! I use the lids that come with the jars and use them over and over. Others prefer to use the cellophane lids and elastic bands that come in little kits. You can a little packet complete with cellophane, wax discs, labels and rubber bands, just the cellophane, you can even get pretty fabric covers which makes them look really pretty.