Jams, jellies, chutneys and preserves you can make with fruit picked straight from your garden.
Onion & Banana Chutney
A surprisingly delicious combination featuring both Bermuda onions and bananas. Pair with beef straight from the grill and enjoy.
1 pound Bermuda onions, chopped
8 Bermuda bananas, sliced
½ pound dates, chopped
1 ½ cups vinegar
2 teaspoons ginger
¾ cup raisins
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon curry
2 cups water
1 cup sugar
Simmer first four ingredients for 20 minutes in a covered pan. Add the rest of the ingredients and boil uncovered until mixture thickens. Bottle and seal.
Pawpaws can be grown all year round, and pawpaw jam is delicious on toast or crackers with salty cream cheese.
2 pounds ripe pawpaw, cubed
½ pound grated apple
1 quart vinegar
½ package raisins
½ pound onions, chopped
½ teaspoon mustard
1 pound brown sugar
1 teaspoon peppercorns or allspice
1 ½ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon curry
1 teaspoon ginger
Combine all ingredients and cook, stirring carefully, until thick. Pour into hot jars and seal.
Surinam Cherry Jam
High in antioxidants and a good source of vitamins C and A, Surinam cherries are red when ripe and only available in the spring.
4 cups ripened Surinam cherries, blossom end snipped, pit removed
4 cups sugar
¼ cup water
Save some of the seeds and put in a cheesecloth bag and tie. Boil sugar, cherries and bagged stones over a moderate heat until jellied. Press through a strainer and fill sterile jars. Seal, label and date.
Bermuda Strawberry Jam
An excellent source of immune-boosting vitamin C and antioxidants, strawberries are good for fighting bad cholesterol and high blood pressure, reducing joint inflammation, and even preventing wrinkles! Make a large batch of strawberry jam to use the whole year through.
3 punnets of fresh Bermuda strawberries, washed and with green tops removed
Juice of one large lemon
3 cups caster sugar
Combine the ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil to allow the sugar to melt and the strawberries to release their juices. Simmer on medium heat for about 20 minutes, mixing occasionally with a wooden spoon and skimming off the foam. Use caution as the juicy mixture will be hot.
As the mixture congeals, you can test to see if it is ready by putting a small amount of juice on a cold plate. (We recommend putting a plate in the freezer before you begin cooking.) If the juice easily turns to a gel on the plate, remove from heat and immediately pour the jam into sterilised jars. To ensure a good seal, avoid getting any jam on the edges of the jars. If mixture does not turn into a gel on the plate, cook for another five minutes and test again until ready.
Using an oven mitt, turn the jars upside down to cool. You will hear the tops of the jars “pop” as they seal during cooling. Once the jam is cool enough, enjoy!
Old-Fashioned Tomato Jam
Available throughout the year, local tomatoes are bursting with flavour, and tomato jam can be used on sandwiches and burgers, added to a charcuterie board or served warm with crusty bread and soup.
2 pounds ripe tomatoes
¾ cup brown sugar
¼ cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1 ½ teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
½ teaspoon garlic powder
Chop the tomatoes and remove any loose seeds. Add all the ingredients to a medium pot and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 1–1 ½ hours, stirring regularly so it doesn’t burn on the bottom. Once the jam looks thick and glossy, turn off the heat. Place in jars and refrigerate.
Freshly Picked Peach Preserves
Deliciously sweet, peach preserves can be added by the spoonful to Greek yogurt or atop ice-cream!
6 pounds whole peaches
Juice from 4 large lemons
2 1/2–3 1/2 cups granulated sugar
Pour lemon juice into a large saucepan. Peel, pit and chop peaches into small, bite-sized pieces. Add peaches to the lemon juice and give it a good stir; coating the peaches in lemon juice will keep them from browning.
Pour sugar over the peaches and stir gently. If you like your jam sweet, add 3 1/2 cups, but if not, use less. Let the mixture sit at room temperature for one hour before turning on the heat. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium and allow mixture to simmer for 1–2 hours or until the liquid has reduced significantly and is thick and jelly-like. As the preserve thickens, stir it frequently to prevent it from burning. As with the strawberry jam, test whether the preserve is done by spooning a small amount onto a cold dish. If it jellies while cooling, then it is done.
Once done, pour the mixture into clean jars up to 1/2 inch from the top. Using an oven mitt, turn the jars upside down to cool. You will hear the tops of the jars “pop” as they seal during cooling.