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Jam


londoneye

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I'm not much of a cook, to say the least, but egged on by OH (bless, he still has faith in me !), and the inability to eat one more raspberry, I thought I would give it a go.    Not being cold enough to put the cooker on yet, I found a micro-wave jam recipe.   Essentially equal quantities of raspberries and sugar.   Cook rasps for 3 minutes on full, add sugar, stir, cook 3 minutes on full, stir, continue til 18 minutes in all.

I have very little jam, because most of it is now glued around the microwave, but taking that aside, the small amount I managed to rescue tastes goooooood, but unfortunately the texture is more akin to glue than jam. 

More raspberries ripening as I speak - any idea what I did wrong ??

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Not a Jam expert, but possibly 18 mins in a microwave on full power is too long. Sounds like they "boiled over". How about freezing some raspberries? They make delicious pies in the middle of winter[:D] In fact raspberry pie is my favourite dessert! Joy

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I've never tried making jam in the microwave, but to rescue the little jam you have left you could pop it in a saucepan, add a little water, and reheat it gently (whilst stirring) until the jam is liquid enough.

If you put a plate in the freezer whilst you are doing this, you can use it to test the "set" of the jam.  When you think the jam is the right consistence, take the plate out of the freezer, spoon a tiny smudge of jam onto the cold plate, and leave it to cool for a couple of minutes.  If you then draw your finger through it, and it leaves a wrinkly surface, the jam is about right.

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It did boil over - for about 18 minutes, but I thought (having never attempted such a thing before) that constant boiling must be what I was aiming for.   It really does taste just like jam though (apart from the consistency problems)!  Will try thinking it down, funny because OH said 'just bung it in a saucepan with some water' and I scoffed at him, so I shall have to do it secretly ! 

I'd love to freeze some, ready for when the cooker is back in action.   Do I literally just put them in a bag and then in the freezer or is there some technique?

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For what it's worth, I have a recipe for raspberry jam shown in a microwave cookery book that used to come with the milkman...!

It says to add the sugar only when the fruit is cooked.

for a microvwave oven with a max output of 700 watts

[quote]Makes 1kg / 2 lb

800 g / 1¾ lb raspberries, hulled

625 g / 1 lb preserving sugar

15 g / ½ oz unsalted butter

  • Place the raspberries in a large heatproff bowl and sprinkle with the citric acid.
  • Cook on FULL (100%) for 10 mn until soft.
  • Add the sugar and butter, blending well.
  • Cook on FULL (100%) for 40 to 45 mn, stirring every 5 mn, until setting point is reached.
  • LEave to stand for 20 mn.
  • Laddle into warm sterilised jars.
  • Allow to cool, then cover with waxed paper, seal and label.
  • Store in a cool dry place.[/quote]

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[quote user="londoneye"]

It did boil over - for about 18 minutes, but I thought (having never attempted such a thing before) that constant boiling must be what I was aiming for.   It really does taste just like jam though (apart from the consistency problems)!  Will try thinking it down, funny because OH said 'just bung it in a saucepan with some water' and I scoffed at him, so I shall have to do it secretly ! 

I'd love to freeze some, ready for when the cooker is back in action.   Do I literally just put them in a bag and then in the freezer or is there some technique?

[/quote]

Spread the washed (but not wet) raspberries out on a tray in a single layer, freeze like that, then remove from tray, put in freezer bag and store in freezer. They will then be loose and seperate, not a cogealed mass.

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FWIW this is what I done - and it has worked with several different fruits - but not in a microwave

Mix equal quantities of fruit and sugar (preferably confisuc) in a bowl and leave overnight in fridge.

Add some lemon juice to the fruit/sugar mix in a pan, bring to boil on hob and give it a full rolling boil for no more than 5 mins stirring regularly then test on your frozen plate

If not ready cook again for a minute or 2 until you have jam.

Leave to rest for 30 mins while you sterilise your jars in oven

Ladle into jars and when cold top off with paraffin wax.

Happy jamming

John

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Pie is  really easy! Thoroughly defrost bag of raspberries, add sugar to taste. Put in a suitable pie dish. Add a covering of shortcrust pastry. Cook at 200c for about 30 mins until crust is brown. Enjoy with some single cream or creme fraiche[:D] If you dont want to make your own pastry you could use pate brisee (sorry no french characters on laptop), its not quite as good as shortcrust but not bad! Joy

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I get loads of fruit from my raspberry canes and when I pick them put them straight into an old ice-cream tub (making sure they are 'clean' of bugs etc but not washed) and bung them in the freezer.  As long as it's not crammed full they stay seperated - just give them a shake.

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Why wait until winter- it's delicious all year round[:D] I dont have any raspberries[:(] but my Mum always makes me a couple of pies when I am visiting the UK! I have planted some autumn fruiting canes last year, but only have a handful of raspberries this year, think I will put in a few summer fruiting ones as well. I think Suzie is correct, better not to wash just pick over, or if washing let them dry again before freezing. Only another 6 weeks until the school holidays and I'm off to the UK for some raspberry pie! [:D]Joy

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Using the normal method on the cooker with a "deluge" of plums earlier in the year, I thought I would have another go at plum jam.  Once again it failed and did not set.  However, the plum syrup goes really well with greek yoghurt.

Why doesn't my plum jam set.  I followed the recipe diligently?

Jan

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Or using over-ripe fruit, as this contains less natural pectin than just-ripe or slightly under-ripe fruit.  Also, washing the fruit, unless really filthy, reduces the natural pectin level.  Better to just wipe it, if necessary, with a bit of kitchen paper, the boiling process will kill off any "nasties" anyway.

I too was a jam virgin until this year [:)]

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[quote user="Clair"]

  • Cook on FULL (100%) for 10 mn until soft.

  • Add the sugar and butter, blending well.

  • Cook on FULL (100%) for 40 to 45 mn, stirring every 5 mn, until setting point is reached.
    [/quote]

Eeek!  That sounds AWFUL!   An hour in the microwave!   I am sure that when I have made raspberry jam in a saucepan it takes less than half that time.
I heat the raspberries gently until the juices start to run, then stir in the sugar, bring it all up to simmer and then cook until setting-point is reached (testing it with the chilled-plate technique).

Angela

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Tell me jam experts ..............My neighbour has given us a load of figs as she has a tree loaded with them ...I know what the figs are likely to do to us.............  she has also given us some fig jam .. I have never had this before ! ... ...is it  likely to have the same effect ?
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We have loads of figs at the moment and I have made fig and lemon preserve (an American recipe off the internet).  It is very easy and we really like it.

Cut or chop your figs (depending on size - ours are very small so I just halve them) and then weigh them.  Place in a large glass or plastic bowl with an equal quantity of sugar (or slightly less. I tend to round down so that 2.3 kilos of fruit for example would have 2 kilos of sugar added).  Add one lemon for each kilo of figs, halved lengthways
and with any visible pips removed, and then very finely sliced; I put mine through the slicer widget on the food processor. You could grate the lemon with the grater widget if you prefer smaller pieces.  Stir, and leave the bowl covered overnight.  Next day bring the fruit and sugar to the boil in a preserving pan and simmer until slightly thickened  and rich looking; times will depend on whether you are cooking a large or a small batch.  I used two kilos of figs last time and I think it took around 30 mins to look about right. Ladle into jars preheated in the oven in the usual way.  The recipe says simmer rather than boil and it seems to work OK - it isn't really a true jam as it stays slightly runny but when cold it is quite manageable on toast and really delicious.  I guess you could cook it for longer and make it stickier but we love it just as it is.  And it doesn't seem to have the same effects as overdosing on fresh figs does, so it's a really good way of using a bumper crop!

Val

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Home made jam is much,much better than the commercial stuff, especially if you like to dig out chunks of fruit.

I have always found that soft fruit needs pectin to set - I use an apple,  and testing & stirring is really important.   I have had the odd disaster, nodded off with jam cooking - seemed ok, bottled it, and it was solid in the jar - toffee not jam.  Would love to hear about how to make fig jam, used to enjoy that in S Africa, the best jam ever, especially with hunky chunks of fig.  Presently working thro' a bottle of Marula jam from SA- unusual taste, but delicious, & supposed to be good for you - who cares?

 This year's jam we've nearly eaten, & gave away a few bottles  from our damson trees (the deer got the rest)-  greedy or what?   (us not the deer!) Planning some lemon curd next.

 

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