The blog has taken a bit of a battering recently, what with moving house, working full-time, studying for a new qualification, and gardening to boot. But that seems to have calmed down, and spare time is now alternating comfortably between unpacking boxes, revising, and blogging.
So if you’re new to the blog or have missed previous posts, the headline is this – we’ve moved out of town and to a small Swiss village with a big heart. It’s nothing more than a street with a few houses, but the neighbours seem friendly enough. In fact, yesterday I noticed that there was a branch from the neighbour’s garden hanging over into ours. It was dripping with cherries, and so I picked some. Our neighbour came out of her garden and offered to let us come into her garden and pick more from the tree. As kind as that was we definitely didn’t need to – from two branches I managed to get almost 2kg of fruit!
So what to do with 2kg of fresh cherries?! Well, make jam obviously…
Making jam isn’t half as complicated as some people think. Once we were done preparing the fruit (taking off the stalks and removing the stones), we had just over 1kg of cherries which were thrown into a saucepan with the juice of 3 lemons. I simmered that for about 30mins, and then threw in 800g of sugar.
Now, here is the thing, you don’t need any fancy gadgets to tell you when jam is at setting point – you don’t even need a thermometer. Just pop a saucer into the fridge, and every few minutes take it out and plop on a bit of jam on the saucer, and wait. After a moment, run your finger through the jam. If the top of the jam blob wrinkles, you’re good to go. If it doesn’t, repeat the process after a couple of minutes until you get the desired result (e.g. wrinkly top jam splodge).
Once you’ve reached setting point, take the jam off the heat and leave to cool for 10mins. After that, remove any scum that may have formed on the top with a spoon, and put the remaining mixture into clean and sterile jars.
If, like me, you got your fruit from someone else’s tree, then be sure to run a jar or two around as a thank you. That’s what I’m doing tonight…