Thursday, 1 August 2013

Simple Blackcurrant Jam (My Parents' Recipe)


This was a whole family effort, children, parents and grandparents together picked these juicy blackcurrants. My children were thrilled when they found yet another fruit laden branch, of which there were many! We filled an old saucepan to the brim with the large purple blackcurrants, from there they were weighed, bagged and carefully nursed home. My father ran through the recipe quickly and with a final wave we left them to their own jam making. Their recipe only calls for 1kg of fruit at a time as they believe it impairs the flavour if the batches are too big.
I think that they could easily sell their jam at the local farmers market, what we took home was only a fraction of the fruit on the branches. Our back garden blackbirds are the best fed in the country!


With some of the remaining blackcurrants I made a Frangipane Tart, which I adapted from my Blueberry Frangipane Tart, I added 300g of the blackcurrants instead of the blueberries, it has a much sharper taste but it is perfect with some sweetened cream or creme fraiche.

Yield 4 x 454g Jars

Ingredients
1kg Fresh blackcurrants, washed and stalks removed
1kg Granulated sugar
125ml Water
Knob of butter

Method
Wash the blackcurrants in cold running water to remove any grit or grime.


Remove the stalks and any unripe (green) blackcurrants. Place the blackcurrants in a large saucepan, add the sugar, water and the butter (my fathers tip: the butter will stop the jam from bubbling up too much).


My mother's tip is that by placing the blackcurrants first in the pan it will prevent the sugar from burning into the bottom of the pan.


Bring the mixture slowly to the boil. Skim the scum from the top.


Allow the jam to come to a roiling boil for 20 minutes, stirring frequently. Meanwhile place a saucer in the freezer and sterilise your jars. Keep the sterilised jars warm in the over at 110ΒΊC/225ΒΊF/ Gas Mark ¼ until needed, this will prevent the jars from cracking when pouring in the jam.


When the 20 minutes have elapsed, place a teaspoon of jam on the frozen saucer, leave on the counter for 1 minute, run your finger through the jam, if the skin wrinkles or the track left by your finger stays in place, your jam is ready. If not continue to boil for another 5-10 minutes test again.


Remove the jam for the heat, ladle into the warmed jars, seal and label.




28 comments:

  1. Gosh, that's bringing me back in time. Real traditional jam, and it doesn't get much better than blackcurrant! thank you for sharing a little slice of home :)

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  2. Thank you, we really enjoyed picking the fruit and making the jam. My father told later me they harvested 4kgs of blackcurrants (much to the blackbirds dismay!) after we left :)

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  3. Thanks for the delicious recipe. I am having to make a second batch of double quantities as it is so popular. Smaller jars this time.

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  4. I'm so glad you're enjoying the recipe so much! A great way to use up a bumper crop :)

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  5. Thank you for a super-easy, scrummy recipe for my first jam-making exploits! Thank you so much - your mother's tip worked like a charm!

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    1. Thank you Sandra, I will pass than on to my mother :) Glad it worked out for you!

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  6. Hi ya,
    Doubled the mixture with 200g less sugar, I always put bit less sugar in my jams, thanks to my friends Byrne's for the fruit, got about 500 g from my own garden. Turned out beautiful, will be sharing with friends as usual, thanks to you and your family for the recipe. ��

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    1. Oh that's lovely to hear, so glad you made it. I will pass on you're kind words to my parents. Thanks for sharing our recipe to others :)

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  7. hi, going to try this recipe after I have picked more blackcurrants tomorrow. assuming I can get some hidden in the cupboard, how long do you think it would last?

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    1. Rosalind I think if your jars are sterilised, don't get contaminated by putting your fingers into them before they're filled and once they are sealed correctly I think your jars of jam would last a year. Enjoy your blackcurrant picking :)

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  8. Just did it - apparently successfully! I did have a problem with it setting, probably because I didn't boil it at a high enough temperature, so had to add some lemon juice and reboil. But now I know. Only negative is that it's very very sweet. Next time I'll try less sugar. Everyone should have a couple of blackcurrant bushes - hardy, pest free, even happy in clay soil. This year I got nearly a kilo of berries from one plant (about 3 years old). Very satisfying to have organic home made jam (I got 3 450g jars out of it).

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    1. Great to hear you got the jam to set, obviously sugar plays a very important part of preserving the fruit but feel free to reduce the amount and hopfully it will keep for just as long. Thanks for trying my recipe :)

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  9. I have just made this for the 2nd year running and love your recipe, the jam is perfect. Last years batch kept well in a dark cupboard until opened and we still had half a jar in the fridge. Thank you for sharing :-)

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    1. Thank you for making my recipe for a second year running, great to hear it kept so well for you. Lisa

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  10. Hi again, first batch turned out so well (and so easy to do), I have made a second batch. Friends who have had some of it loved it. Thanks for sharing such an easy to make and tasty recipe 😊

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    1. Glad you enjoyed it Rosalind! Great to hear everyone's positive feedback.

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  11. My first ever attempt at jam and it worked !! I used high preserving sugar so don't know if that's classed as cheating but hey, no need to buy shop bought for the foreseeable future. Thanks for sharing and making my day!

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    1. Nicely done Wendy! No cheating whatsoever,use whatever works. A very proud moment making your own jam :)

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  12. Great recipe and tips. Made my jam today and it is just like my granny used to make. Thank you, I will use this recipe again.

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  13. Thank you for your recipe. I had almost 4kg of black currants so did it in two batches. It's still cooling but the jam left in the pan tasted lovely ��

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  14. Thanks for the recipe. A quick question, you say remove the stalks this makes sense but what about the bit on the other end of the blackcurrant? Should it be removed?

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    1. I'm so glad you like the recipe! As you can see from the photographs I did not remove the little hairy bit from the other end of the blackcurrant, it did not affect the taste or texture but feel free to remove it if you prefer. Good luck :)

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  15. Hi, can I make it with a substitute for the butter? My daughter can't have anything with cows milk. Thanks ��

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    1. Welcome back Rosalind, feel free to omit the butter entirely. It shouldn't affect the recipe adversely. Thank you for dropping by again this year :)

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    2. Hi Lisa, well I made the Jam without the butter and it still turned out lovely and my Aunt-in-law couldn't believe how easy it was 😊 would you be happy for me to share this page on a Facebook group as I have many ppl asking for the recipe x

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    3. Feel free Rosalind to share the link on FB, the more the merrier :)

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  16. This is the 3rd time I've used this recipe. It is simple & easy. Results are fabulous.A big hit with friends & family. I must admit to using slightly less sugar to make it a bit sharper. Thank you for sharing! ����

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  17. This is the second time I'm about to use this recipe and it's brilliant! Like Vanessa said, it's so simple and easy but tastes amazing!

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