RHUBARB AND FIG JAM
It’s jam making season again and one of my favorites is rhubarb and fig. The rhubarb inthe veg garden is in plentiful supply and although the figs on the tree are not yet ready there is still a good stock in the freezer from last year making.
Although I’m lucky enough to have a heavy based copper jam pan any heavy based pan will be ok, just remember to keep stirring to avoid the fruit burning, sticking to the bottom and making a nasty mess which is almost impossible to remove.
It is essential that the jars you will put the jam into have been sterilised. This can be done simply by rinsing well in boiling water them placing in a 160 degrees preheated oven upside down for 10 minutes or until thoroughly dry.
The recipe below has weights of the fruit I use although any combination will work. I tend to use 1 part figs to 2 parts rhubarb and half the total fruit weight of sugar which doesn’t make the jam too sweet.
- 1kg rhubarb, washed and cut into 2cm pieces
- 500g fresh figs (remove the hard stalks if there any on the fruit)
- 750g granulated sugar
- (you can buy special jam sugar but I don’t feel this is necessary ! ! ! ! ! and never have a problem with my jam setting)
- juice of 2 lemons
Place the washed and chopped rhubarb and figs into a large kitchen mixing bowl, cover with the sugar and leave over night in a cool place. This will help the fruit break down a bit and will allow the juices to come out.
The next day in the fridge.
Place the contents of the bowl into your large pan together with the lemon juice and gently heat until the sugar has dissolved.
Bring to the boil for boil for about 30 minutes. Stir regularly with a wooden spoon to avoid the fruit from sticking but be careful as it can spit and burn your arms if you’re not careful.
You may have wondered why you have just put a plate in the fridge! It is to test the setting point of the jam and this is done by putting a teaspoon of jam on to the plate and let it cool for about 1 minute. Push the surface of the jam and if it wrinkles it has reached setting point and is ready to be bottled.
If any scum on the top of the jam in the pan has appeared during cooking this can simply be removed by adding a small knob of butter as soon as it has been taken off the heat and skimming the surface with a spoon.
I tend to ladle the jam into a medium sized jug and carefully pour into my prepared pots, you may prefer to use a funnel to avoid spillage.
You should fill the jars as full as you can and put the tops on straight away. The heat of the jam will seal the jar and avoid any bacteria getting in.
This should make about 5 jars depending on the size.