Fig jam

Well, I guess fig season is in full swing. I collected about 4 pounds with the help of Tamara and Brittany, my cousins. And, Trader Joe decided to throw away almost an entire garbage bag of both green and black figs. So, jam it would be. Fortunately, I love fig jam.

I actually made 3 batches this weekend, one with some sour ale that accidentally got shoved to the back of the fridge. The beer flavor compliments the fig flavor well. I have 2 more batches on the counter, one green fig with white balsamic and one black fig with regular balsamic. Should be lovely. Here’s the recipe.

4 pounds figs, chopped
4 cups sugar
2 lemons, squeezed

I mascerated this overnight with all the ingredients, and it worked really well. It cooked down pretty quickly, and so pretty!

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Cook for maybe 30 minutes, till thickened. Can them up and enjoy!

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Pear with blackberry and Chambord

Random extra fruit inspired this jam. About 2 pounds pears, a handful of blackberries. I also had a bottle of Chambord on the shelf. Delicious. This would be great in a tart or wrapped up in a bit of pastry.

Recipe:

2 pounds pears
Handful of blackberries
1 1/2 cups sugar
Lemon
1/3 cup Chambord (raspberry liquor)

Bring to a boil and simmer for 30 minutes or so, until fruit is soft and jam is thickened. Add Chambord and simmer 5 minutes longer. Can and store one year.

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Stone fruit mix

A large bag of mixed fruit arrived with our food donation this week. Some perfectly ripe stone fruit was destined for jam. I took yellow peaches, white peaches and a couple of plumcots and chopped them up, and added sugar and a lemon, squeezed. Let mascerate overnight, and cook up. Yum.

Recipe:

4 pounds stone fruit
3 cups of sugar
One lemon, juices and fruit

Bring to a boil and simmer about 30 minutes, or until thickened. Can and store up to one year.

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Spicy salsa

The tomatoes are definitely here this year, after lots of impatient waiting. So, I decided to makem some salsa for the pantry. We use salsa on practically everything, so it will probably go fast. This batch made 7 jars canned and one for the refrigerator. It’s pretty spicy, so feel free to decrease the chilis.

Don’t the tomatoes look beautiful?

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Recipe:

7 pounds tomatoes, preferably home grown
Dried chilis, I used 2 guajillo
1 1/2 cups onion
1 1/2 cups cilantro, chopped
1 head of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon salt
3/4 cup red wine vinegar

Chop tomato and onion into small pieces. Add to canning pot. Place dried chilis in a small bowl and cover with boiling water. Let soak for 15 minutes. Pour off half the water and puree chilis and remaining water in a food processor. Mince cilantro and garlic. Add the remainder of the ingredients. Bring to a boil and reduce for 10 minutes.

Fill jars and follow canning process. You might notice that I was out of canning jars for this project, so I just canned them with reused jars, and I’ll keep them in our extra fridge.

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Roasted red pepper spread

Luke and I enjoy the red pepper spread from Trader Joes. So, when a large garbage bag full of bell peppers got delivered to our place, I decided to make my own version. I used the Ball book recipe, slightly adapted.

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It’s really good! I bumped up the garlic, and added some smoked paprika. I’m going to mix this with some roasted eggplant and make hummus with it. Should be amazing.

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Recipe:

7 pounds bell peppers, mixed colors.

1 sweet onion

1 head garlic

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

1 tsp salt

1 Tbs sugar

1 Tbs smoked paprika

De seed and chop the peppers into big chunks. Chop onion in half and leave garlic head intact. Roast at 450 till edges blacken and peppers soften, about 30 minutes.

In Batches, puree peppers and add to canning pot. Puree onion and garlic. Add to canning pot with the rest of the ingredients. Bring to a boil and reduce down for about 20 minutes.
This made 5 half pints, 4 4 oz and one refrigerator jar. Feel free to halve the recipe.

Follow canning drill and enjoy!

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Spiced tomato jam

The food donation we got this week has 1 1/2 packages of baby heirloom tomatoes that needed a purpose. We have plenty of homegrown tomatoes to eat fresh, so these were free to cook. Tomato jam has been going around the blog world in the last couple of years, and it always sounded good.

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So, I added some chilis that were on their away out and an onion, and some sugar. Later I added some red wine vinegar and comin seeds when I decided this was almost a chutney, but not quite. It’s definitely a jam, but good for savory pairings. I’m looking forward to trying this with a grilled cheese. Or, use it like ketchup.

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Recipe:

1 1/2 pounds baby heirloom tomatoes, halved.

3 cups sugar

1 sweet onion

About 10 chilis, I used a combo of mild jalepenos and habaneros. Feel free to sub bell peppers or mix up the chilis.

Pinch salt

Juice of one lemon. Boil with jam and remove before canning.

Tsp cumin seeds

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

I chopped up the onion, peppers and tomatoes and mixed with the sugar and lemon and mascerated over night. This step is optional. Then, add to canning pot and bring to a boil. Add cumin seeds, vinegar, salt and simmer on medium till cooked through. Onions will be translucent and it will be thick and jammy.

Follow canning drill and eat up. This made one half pint and three 4 oz jars. 

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Random jam

I didn’t plan on sharing this one. Sorry about not taking any process photos. But the end result was tasty, so here it is.

Basically, if you know the ratios you like of fruit to sugar, you can substitute fruits and get creative. I had about 6 apples, a pear, 8 small plums and some thyme from the garden. I chopped up a lemon into half slices and added 4 cups of sugar.

I added some flower pepper(from trader joes) and a dash of sea salt at the end of the cooking process. Jam from whatever I had on hand. It tastes a little spicy, sweet and a little herbal. Yum.

Recipe:

3 pounds apples
1 pear
1/2 pound plums
4 cups sugar
2 Small springs of thyme
10-12 grinds of flower pepper
Pinch sea salt

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