I’m sitting on the floor in the San Francisco airport, waiting for a flight that’s been delayed three hours. One of the only good things about hanging around the airport all afternoon is that I get to share this recipe for plummy peach jam, which I didn’t think I’d have time to post. I made it last night during a brief break in the frenzy of cleaning and packing for our trip to Alaska. I had to do it. There were several pounds of white peaches and twenty-five pounds of Satsuma plums rolling around on the living-room table. I tried to explain to them that I didn’t have time to deal with them, but they acted like they didn’t understand what I was saying.
Most of the plums got sliced up and stashed in the freezer. But I mixed a few handfuls with the white peaches to make this quick, very low sugar (just one cup in the batch) jam with Pomona’s Pectin. The peaches were sweet and the plums were tart — a perfect mix. Also, the plums saved the too-pale peaches from their anemia, giving them a fetching rosy glow.
I couldn’t keep this one to myself.
Plummy Peach Jam (Low Sugar, with Pomona’s Pectin)
3 cups mashed sweet peaches*
1 cup mashed tart plums*
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 cup sugar
4 teaspoons Pomona’s calcium water
3 teaspoons Pomona’s pectin powder
About calcium water. Calcium water is an essential part of Pomona’s Pectin; it activates the pectin powder. The calcium water mix and the pectin powder are both contained in the Pomona’s Pectin box. The box insert explains how to prepare the calcium water before you make your jam. (Don’t worry, it’s easy!)
1. Sterilize your jars.
2. Blanch, pit, and mash the peaches. (For the mashing part, I used my VitaMix on a low setting, but a food processor, potato masher, or even your own clean paws will work just fine.)
3. Pit and mash the plums. Combine them with the peaches and put them into your jam pot.
4. Measure the sugar into a bowl. Thoroughly mix the pectin powder into the sugar and set the bowl aside.
5. Add the lemon juice and calcium water to the fruit in your jam pot. Bring the mixture to a boil.
6. Fold in the sugar-pectin mix. Stir the mixture vigorously for 2 minutes to dissolve the pectin.
7. Return to the mixture to a boil and remove it from the heat. Let the jam stand for 5-8 minutes, stirring occasionally. (This will help to prevent “fruit float” — that is, the annoying thing that sometimes happens with boxed-pectin jams where the fruit solids separate from the liquid and rise to the top of the jar during processing.)
8. Ladle the still-hot jam into your sterilized jars, leaving 1/4-inch head space. Process 5 minutes in a water bath canner. (If you’re above sea level, add 1 minute to your processing time for every 1,000 feet.)
Yields 5 half pints.
* Sorry I can’t tell you the weight to start with to yield 3 cups of peaches and 1 cup of plums. (Because I didn’t plan to post this recipe, I didn’t employ the kitchen scale.) My suggestion is to start with more than you think you need and put the rest of the puree aside for a smoothie or fruit leather. As you can see from the pic below, I froze my extra puree, along with all those plum slices.