Sunday, December 8, 2013

Cornelian Cherry Jam

 If I was one of those lucky animals living in the forest, Cornelian cherries would be on my list of favourite fruits, definitely. Their round shape and ruby colour simply impress me. 
Now, imagine that you loved Cornelian cherries as much as I do and one day got a handful of them as a gift. What would you do with the berries? Eat them up right away? Or keep them for later use? Well, I'd like to make a jar of jam and I did. This way, I could preserve the berries for a much longer time which makes it possible to prolong the joy of that fantastic taste.
Before you proceed to read the recipe, I'd like to note down that you might want to pit the cherries before you make the jam. Otherwise, you have to deal with the pits later on while you are enjoying the jam which might bother you a little. However, if/when you pit the cherries, their round shape might be damaged, which is something I'd like to see the least, and that's the reason why people usually make Cornelian cherry marmalade, not the jam. Once the cherries are pitted, you puree it to make marmalade. 
Here comes the recipe for the Cornelian cherry jam.
2 cups ripe Cornelian cherries (washed and dried)
4 cups sugar
2 cups water
juice of 1 small lemon


1. Put the berries in a medium size saucepan.
2. Add the sugar to cover the berries completely.
3. Let the berries rest in sugar overnight.
4. Put the saucepan with berries-sugar mixture over low heat. Add the water.
5. Boil the mixture. Stir occasionally until the berries are soft. Let it simmer until pink foam starts to form. Skim this off with a spoon.
6. Check if the syrup is getting thicker. Once you are satisfied with the thickness of the jam (after approximately 10 minutes), add the lemon juice. It preserves their bright ruby red color and prevents them from crystallizing. Simmer for three more minutes.  
7. Remove from heat.    
8. Skim the extra foam from the jam, stir the jam, and proceed to fill the sterilized jam jars. Fill the jars until they are about 1/2 cm from the top. Wipe the top of the jar clean and close with the lid immediately.

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