Jam cooking: Everything you need to know
Jam is a culinary sweetness that is prepared by cooking fruit with added sugar. This cooking of the jam is essential to achieve the perfect texture and flavor. In this article, we will talk about how to cook jam, how much time it takes, what fruits are suitable and what ingredients are needed to make jam at home.
Jam is a delicacy appreciated by all, but do you really know the different cooking methods to make a delicious jam? According to Marie Claire’s article, there are several options available to you, including the traditional method where fruit is cooked with sugar to obtain a smooth and creamy texture. This method is ideal for fruits that have a dense texture such as pear, apple or banana. There is also the steaming method which allows you to prepare jams with very little sugar. This technique is suitable for fruits rich in pectin such as currants, blackberries or figs.
There is also the so-called “copper basin” method which is very popular with amateur and professional jam makers. Cooking in a copper basin has the advantage of heating more quickly and evenly, thus offering better control over the cooking of the jam. This allows for a perfect texture and even cooking for all fruits.
Finally, Marie Claire’s article mentions the preparation of jam in a bread machine, a very simple and practical method for neophytes in the kitchen. This technique makes it possible to prepare a jam in just 2 hours and without the need to monitor the cooking.
In conclusion, there are several methods of cooking jam and each of them offers different benefits. It’s up to you to choose the one that suits you best and to experiment to find the jam recipe that will delight your guests. Do not hesitate to consult Marie Claire’s article here to learn more about the different methods of cooking jam.
Stages of cooking jam
Cooking jam involves the following steps:
- Cut the fruit into small pieces
- Put the fruits in a saucepan and add sugar and pectin
- Heat the pan over medium heat and stir until the sugar has dissolved
- Increase the temperature until the jam reaches a boil
- Once boiling, adjust the temperature and simmer until the jam is thickened
- Remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool slightly before putting the jam into sterilized jars
Cooking time for jam
Cooking time for jam may vary depending on the fruit used and the amount prepared. In general, cooking jam takes about 20-30 minutes. However, fruits like strawberries and apricots can cook faster, in about 10 to 15 minutes. Harder fruits like apples or pears may take longer, up to 45 minutes.
Fruit suitable for jam
Almost any fruit can be used to make jam, but some fruits work better than others. Acidic fruits or fruits rich in pectin are particularly suitable for the preparation of jam. Fruits commonly used for jam include:
- The strawberries
- The cherries
- The walls
- The grapefruits
- fruit kiwi
Ingredients needed for jam
To prepare jam, you will need the following ingredients:
- Fruits: Choose ripe, fresh, quality fruit for the best flavor.
- Sugar: Sugar is essential to give consistency to jam. Use granulated sugar in equal parts or a ratio of 2/3 sugar to 1/3 fruit.
- Pectin: Pectin is needed to thicken jam. Most fruits contain pectin, but you can also add canned or powdered pectin.
- Lemon juice: Lemon juice can help activate pectin and prevent sugar crystallization.
- Spices: Add spices such as vanilla, cinnamon or ginger to flavor your jam and add flavor.
Jam cooking: Useful tips
Here are some tips for successful jam cooking for sure:
- Use a saucepan large enough to allow the jam to expand when it comes to a boil
- The pot should be heavy and thick for even heat distribution
- Add the sugar to the pan after the fruits have heated through. This helps prevent fruit from burning or sticking to the bottom of the pan.
- Stir the jam regularly while cooking to prevent it from sticking or burning on the bottom of the pan.
- Check the consistency of the jam by cooling a small amount on a plate. If it sets and doesn’t spread, it’s ready.
Popular jam brands
There are many popular jam brands in the market. Some of the better known brands include:
- Good Mom
- St. Dalfour
- La Vieja Fabrica
Jam Cooking FAQs
What is the crucial ingredient in the preparation of jam?
The crucial ingredient in the preparation of jam is sugar. It gives texture and consistency to the jam.
Should you add pectin to jam?
Most fruits naturally contain pectin, but some varieties may require the addition of canned or powdered pectin.
How do you know the jam is ready?
To test the jam, you can put a small amount on a plate and let it cool. If it sets and doesn’t spread, it’s ready.
How long should the jam be cooked?
The cooking time for jam varies depending on the type of fruit, but in general, cooking jam takes about 20 to 30 minutes.
Cooking jam is a simple but crucial task for obtaining sweet and fruity flavors. Using the tips and recommendations provided in this article, you can make delicious and successful jam in no time. Experiment with different combinations of fruits, herbs and spices to create your own unique and tasty homemade jam recipe.