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Sunshine in a jar

April 17, 2012

One of the first things I learned about Mike when I met him was that he liked going out to breakfast on Saturday or Sunday, and for a long time we did that. For any number of reasons we don’t do that every weekend any more and I miss it. I’m not much of a breakfast food person, as a matter of fact I used to order a turkey club sandwich and a cup of soup when we’d go out. I’ve grown a little more into breakfast food since then and now will usually get an omelet with spinach, diced tomatoes and american or pepper jack cheese. But, the first thing I do when we’re seated in the restaurant is check out the selection of jam for my toast. I’m always looking for apricot jam but it’s the rare occasion that I find it.  I wonder why?

Back several months ago I came across an apricot jam recipe that used dried apricots. Hmmm, I thought.  I can make apricot jam before its fresh fruit season, and without all the trouble of having to pit the apricots. And, I just happened to have a bag of dried apricots in the pantry for snacking.

While I was pleased enough with this batch of jam,  I would cut the sugar down next time, because it was a little too sweet for me.  I’ll probably add a low sugar pectin to help thicken up the jam.

Dried Apricot Jam
Yield is 5 x 8 ounce jelly jars

8 oz dried apricots, chopped
2-3/4 cups water
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2-1/2 cups sugar
3 tbsp amaretto (optional)

Combine the chopped dried apricots and water in a medium bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let sit on the counter overnight to reconstitute.

The next day, pour the contents of the bowl into a non-reactive pot, add the lemon juice and bring to a boil.  Cover the pot, reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes.  Once the apricots are very tender, raise the heat and slowly pour in the sugar.  Bring back to a boil and cook over high heat until the jam is very thick and sticky.

Funnel the jam into your prepared canning jars.  With a damp cloth, wipe the rims, top with lids and rings and process in a boiling water bath canner for 10 minutes.  Remove the jars from the canner and cool.  If any of your jars failed to seal properly, refrigerate promptly.  Sealed jars will keep in a cool, dark place for 9-12 months.  I can’t imagine you’ll have them around that long though.

 

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