I rarely wander into the realm of making homemade jams. Usually I feel like I can buy really yummy stuff (hello, Sarabeth’s) so why would I take all the time to make my own. Then I started getting a farmshare…and when they send concord grapes, you make jam.
So for the past two years, I’ve made this jam and its just SO GOOD. Makes a mean PB&J, just ask Connor. Also, just give me a big ol’ English muffin topped with butter and this jam and I’m a happy camper. It’s actually quite easy to make, so if you find yourself with some concord grapes, definitely churn this jam out of your kitchen one afternoon…you’ll be glad you did!
you will need:
2 pounds concord grapes, stemmed
2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Set 2 small plates in the fridge to chill to use later.
Remove skins from grapes by just squeezing them a bit…they’ll pop right out. Place skins in one bowl and grapes in another. Place skins in a food processor and puree with ½ cup of sugar until smooth.
Combine skins, grapes, lemon juice and remaining sugar in a wide heavy-bottomed pot. Boil mixture over moderate heat, stirring frequently and skimming the foam that bubbles up, until the pulp is broken down, about 20 minutes.
Force mixture through a food mill or strainer over a large bowl. Discard solids and return jam to the pot and cook at a low boil for about 30 minutes more. Monitor closely, skimming foam and making sure the jam doesn’t burn.
To test jam, remove from heat, then drop a teaspoon of jam on a chilled plate. Place the plate in the fridge for 1 minute, then til the plate to the side. If the jam remains in a mound and doesn’t run, its done! If it still runs, continue cooking and repeat this same testing procedure every 5 minutes until its done.
*If you are brave and knowledgeable about canning, you can certainly prepare your jars and lids and can this. You can also double this recipe to yield much more jam to hold onto through the winter. I had a smaller amount of grapes and am totally intimidated by canning alone without a pro to help me, so I just store mine in the fridge.
makes: 3 ½ pint jars (or in my case, 1 large jar)
time: 20 minutes prep + 50-60 minutes cooking