Equipment you need:
- Large pan (I used a 5 litre/10 pint pan but larger is probably safer)
- Wooden spoon
- Jam jars: 4 - 5 jars with a metal screw lid per kg/2 pounds of fruit
- A slotted or perforated spoon if you have one - otherwise a normal spoon will do.
Ingredients for about 4 jars of jam*:
- 1 kg / 2 pounds roughly grated apples** (on a 4 sided standing grater I used the largest one)
- 1/2 kg / 1 pound of granulated sugar
- 1/2 kg / 1 pound of jam sugar
- A pinch of cinnamon (optional)
- A teaspoon of lemon juice (optional)
- Put the grated apple into the large pan with the cinnamon, lemon juice and add the granulated sugar only.
- Put it on a low heat and stir the apple and sugar together - it will be quite dry at first but s the sugar gets wet from the apple and starts melting it will soon become liquid.
- Bring it to the boil slowly, stirring all the time - by doing it slowly you give the apple some time to cook which results in a better flavour later on.
- Use the slotted/perforated spoon to remove any scum (white bubbly stuff) that floats on the top of the jam.
- Once it's getting close to the boil add the jam sugar.
- Stir it in carefully and keep stirring till the jam is boiling even when you stir.
- Take the spoon out and let the jam boil for 4 minutes exactly.
- Meanwhile wash the jam jars up in the hottest water possible - you need the jars hot when you pour the jam into the jars and carefully dry them on inside as water in the jam is a bad thing.
- Keep the jars warm in the oven on a low setting.
- When the time is up turn the heat off.
- Do the next bit as quickly as you can - you need to do this while the jam is still close to the boiling point.
- Get the jars out of the oven and place them on a tea towel to protect your work surface and avoid them shattering.
- Fill the jars almost to the top with the jam.
- Close the jars as tightly as you can with the lids and then turn the jars upside down.
- This will create the vacume seal jam always has.
- After 5 minutes turn the jam the right way round (don't leave it any longer or the jam will stick to the lid and not move down.)
- Leave to cool while still on the tea towel, add a lable with the type of jam and the date.
- The jam should be kept in a cool dark place when sealed and in the fridge when opened.
If you wish to make apple/strawberry jam just use half apple and half strawberry and don't use cinnamon.
* Please note that I'm using whole pounds even though a pound is less than half a kg as its easier to weigh and it doesn't make difference to the end result except there being slightly less jam. Just choose either pounds OR kg and stick with that and it will be fine.
** I used Elstar - a crisp semi sweet apple - I'd suggest using any apple you like to eat.