Tuscan Cookery School – The Jam Plan
Written by Jaillan Yehia
Everyone who know me knows what a sweet tooth I have. So when I signed up for a residential cookery course at a secluded villa in the heart of the Tuscan countryside, plum jam making was one session I was never going to miss. It turns out that making your own jam – with a fraction of the sugar found in store-bought jams – is more straightforward than you think. Here’s the 8 point jam plan…
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1. Wash your fruit
We used plums grown on-site – and select what you’ll use. Do throw away rotten pieces but don’t discard the over-ripe fruits as these are the sweetest.
…for 5 minutes until the fruit is soft so you can remove the stones
3. Measure out your sugar
The typical ratio for shop-bought jam is 1 kilo of sugar to 1 kilo of fruit, but try to use as little sugar as possible – sugar is a preservative so you do need some but if you’re aiming to be healthy 200g or 300g per kilo of fruit is fine.
4. Dice the fruit and simmer
Use a low heat with the sugar for 20 minutes, stirring to avoid burning around the edges of the pan but keeping the lid on in between to keep the heat and steam in. Once the water has evaporated and the sugar dissolved, turn off the heat and leave to cool.
5. Add apples if needed
These can be added as a natural firming agent – they contain pectin to thicken the jam if need be.
6. Transfer to a food blender
At this stage you can add any spices you like, for example cinnamon.
7. Pack into jars
8. Take your jam home
…and tuck in.
SavoirThere was a guest of The Tuscan Cookery School at Villa Ferraia, organised by Eating Italy
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