GOLDEN RASPBERRY AND PEAR JAM
Being a rather large producer of a home made, extremely — no, make that spectacularly delicious jams and jellies (why even pretend to be modest?), I've fallen into an easy dessert habit that helps manage down inventory. During the hectic work week I love to end the day in front of the TV with a big bowl of wonderfully thick Greek yogurt mixed with fresh berries, nuts and a shameless amount of one of my jellies. The ancestor of this dessert was a childhood favorite: bowls of sour cream topped with grapes or blueberries and lots of brown sugar. Is that weird? Who cares.
So what we are looking at here is two dollops of sour cream ringed with a little walnut halo and Golden Raspberry and Pear Jam generously spooned on top. When I composed this little still life the jam had in fact just set, being a mere hour off the stove.
My midweek, behind-closed-doors indulgences are neither this pretty nor this petite. But I'd be happy to serve this presentation to guests and I have no doubt guests would be delighted to have it placed in front of them.
These yellow beauties aren't in season very long so you'd better act quickly. And why, you may ask, did I combine them with with pears? 1. An additional flavor dimension. 2. The pears take the edge off the raspberries' tartness. 3. Their white flesh helps brighten the color. And If that's not reason enough, consider this: the ratio of raspberry seeds to jam is halved without having to use a strainer.
That's pretty much it. Here's how it's done:
2 c. golden raspberries, mashed with a potato masher
2 c. Bartlett pears, peeled and chopped (toss with a couple shakes of Fruit Fresh powder, pears oxidize quickly and you don't want any browning)
3 T. fresh lemon juice
7 c. sugar
1 T. butter
1 pouch Certo liquid pectin
Combine the prepared fruit, lemon juice and sugar in a heavy pot. Bring to a boil, stirring all the while. When the sugar is liquefied you're almost at the boiling point, add the butter to reduce foaming.
When you've got a boil going that doesn't back down when you stir, add the Certo and continue stirring. Bring the mixture back up to a furious boil (don't omit the butter!) cook, stirring mightily, for two minutes. stir well.
Remove from heat, fill sterilized jars with the hot jam and close with sterile lids and bands. Process in a hot water bath for five minutes.