Friday, September 30, 2011

We Be Jammin’!

A year ago, I was lucky enough to run across a lovely blog hosted by an even lovelier blogger, Steph Chows. It all started with two words. 

Jam Exchange.

She had me from “hello”.

I’d never been involved in a bloggy exchange before but the idea intrigued me, and so it began. It was very simple, really. Send two jars of jam to the person you are paired up with.  In return, that person will send YOU two jars of their own homemade jam.

What a fantastic concept, yes?

I thought so. I posted about my exploits with last years exchange here. You can imagine how anxiously I awaited this year’s edition.  A pineapple, some farmers market blueberries, and a caramelized stovetop later, and my congealed creations were on their way to Georgia and Florida. What did I make? This year’s selections were Piña Colada, and Blueberry Lime. Both of which went over famously with the family here as well as an old high school classmate down in Florida, who caught me posting on Facebook about the adventure and “offered” to taste test them for me. I gladly complied and carried my little parcels to the post office the very next business day.

And what did my wondering eyes should appear??? (yes, I’m sorry, I’m already thinking about Christmas) Two lovely jars of jam, straight from Georgia. The Redhead over at Handcrafted with Altitude (you can see a picture of the two jams I sent her here) whipped up a Ginger Vanilla Peach and a Blackberry Peach. Both of which were fabulous. I particularly liked the combination of ginger and peaches.
You can bet I’ll be in line right away for the jam exchange next year! In the meantime, here are a couple of recipes for you to chew on!

Piña Colada Jam 
3 1/2 cups fresh pureed pineapple
1 cup cream of coconut (do NOT use coconut milk) 
1/3 cup white rum 
1/4 cup lemon juice 
6 1/2 cups sugar 
2 (3 ounce) envelopes liquid pectin
    1. In a large heavy bottomed pot, mix together pineapple puree, cream of coconut, rum, and lemon juice.
    2. Stir in sugar and bring to a full rolling boil (one that can't be stirred down) over high heat.
    3. Stir constantly, boil hard for three minutes.
    4. Remove from heat and stir in pectin.
    5. Skim off any foam.
    6. Ladle into sterilized jars to within 1/4 inch of rim. Wipe rim clean.
    7. Apply lids and rings and tighten rings just fingertip tight.
    8. Process jars in boiling water bath canner for 5 minutes.
    Blueberry Lime Jam
    4 1/2 cups blueberries
    1 package dry pectin 5 cups sugar 1 tablespoon lime zest 1/3 cup lime juice

      Crush blueberries one layer at a time. Combine crushed blueberries and pectin in a large pot. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Add sugar, stirring until dissolved. Stir in grated lime peel and lime juice. Return to a rolling boil. Boil hard 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Skim foam if necessary. Ladle hot jam into hot jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace. Process 15 minutes in a hot water bath.


      Kim said...

      The pina colada jam sounds especially wonderful. I have a feeling I'd be putting it on everything.

      The Food Hunter said...

      Loving the pina colada jam

      Anonymous said...

      I just wanted to let you know the Piña Colada Jam went over very well when I had a small gathering a couple of weeks ago.

      -the redhead-

      Anonymous said...

      I just wanted to let you know the Piña Colada Jam went over very well when I had a small gathering a couple of weeks ago.

      -the redhead-