October 02, 2010

Raspberry Jam

The Ingredients
Although a Fall-bearing variety, with proper pruning, Anne is a golden raspberry that will bear lightly in the Summer and again heavily in the Fall. When the honeybees forage on raspberries, their pollen baskets are loaded with pale, almost white, pollen. Reportedly raspberry honey tastes faintly of raspberries, but in this recipe you can use any honey you like. I chose a light-colored one from our Spring harvest, as honey darkens significantly when you heat it. It also loses its nutritional value, since enzymes are deactivated and other nutrients are destroyed. The appeal of this recipe is the total lack of refined sugar. Plus it's a 2-ingredient recipe that could hardly be easier.

Raspberry Jam
In a non-reactive saucepan, heat 'til 8°F above boiling:
At Mile High your goal is 210°F.
1 1/2–2 c. raspberries
1 c. honey

Stir occasionally to keep the seeds from settling and burning to the bottom of the pot, especially if you've doubled or tripled the recipe. As soon as the mixture reaches temperature, pour it into a prepared half-pint-sized jelly jar and boiling-water process for 20". It won't all fit in the jar, so have some fresh buttery toast ready for immediate consumption.
Finished Product: one Weck Mini Tulip Jelly Jar
I meant to infuse the jam with the rosemary, but as you can see in the finished picture, I forgot. I encourage you to try it, though, as raspberry and rosemary is a sublime combination. It's perfect on a scone with rich Devonshire cream, or atop a cracker adorned with a nice ripe triple crème like St. Andre. Shelf life is about a year, at which point it will turn dark.

Jelly Variation:
Push a full pint of berries through a food mill to remove the seeds and proceed with the recipe as written above. The seeds are pectin-rich, so it's best to throw a quarter of a lemon into the pot, the thicker the rind the better. The peel is where you'll get your pectin which will help ensure your jelly sets.

About the Weck Tulip Jar:
I fell in love with the small size and shape of this jar the moment I saw it at Sur la Table, and the set was on clearance so I loved the price as well. Functionally this jar is a pain. For processing, the jars come with metal clips to lock the lids on, which are easily chipped in the process. You are assured of a proper seal when the tab on the rubber seal points down. To break the seal to open your lovely jar of preserves, you simply pull on the tab. The gasket is a one-time use item, but replacements – and plastic snap-on lids! – are available at Fantes.

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