Friday, 29 January 2016

Pear & Saffron Jam

 Photo: Danielle Wood
In cold, dark January it's nice to have a jam recipe at the ready that fits the season. Pears can always be found in my local corner shop and, if you have it, saffron brings a sunny warmth in colour and flavour. Plus you get those pretty red strands running though the yellow.

Pear & Saffron Jam

Makes about one 370g jar

Ingredients:
1 kg pears (4-5), peeled, quartered, cored and roughly diced
200g jam sugar
100g granulated sugar (caster is fine too)
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
pinch of saffron strands

Place the pear, sugars, lemon juice and saffron in a heavy bottomed saucepan and set aside to macerate for about an hour (this draws the juice out of the fruit and concentrates the flavour). Meanwhile, place a small plate in the freezer. 

Bring to a gentle boil stirring occasionally to make sure that the bottom doesn't catch. After 20 minutes, use a potato masher to break up about half of the pear pieces so that you have a mix of sizes. 

Place a small blob of jam onto your chilled plate. After about a minute, the blob should wrinkle when touched. If not, keep cooking your jam for another 10 minutes and test again. 

Stir in the vanilla, let the jam settle for 5 minutes and and transfer to a clean, dry jar.

A note on the final colour of the jam - it won't be as red as it appears in these photos!

Photo: Danielle Wood


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