Who put the butter in the jam? No, it isn’t a fussy query from the person who deals with such things as the butter dish on the tea table – this is something I wondered aloud – though there was no-one to answer me (yes – I talk to myself even when there is only the radio to listen).
I was making some bullace and apple jam (recipe for Bullace Jam is HERE – but the bullaces (wild damson-like fruit) were not as numerous or as large and juicy as usual so I had a feeling that the 4½ lbs lbs would make nothing like the 10 x 1lb pots I hoped for.
SO, as the windfalls have started to come off – I added half a pound of cooked apple per 2 ¼lb lot of bullace.
I cooked the bullace in the microwave with the three tablespoons of water, allowed to cool a little then drained them and squished them around and around in a large-hole colander until all I had left in the colander were bare stones and tough skins.
The apples I peeled, cored and cut into slices (on the apple/peeler/corer contraption which I love (see here) then just cut the prepared apple into 4 and spread them out in a covered pyrex dish and cooked until mushy.
This I added to the bullace and reheated – proceeding to then add the 3 lbs of granulated sugar and stirred well to dissolve it before returning to the microwave. When this mixture had heated to bubbling point I added a “knob” or ‘walnut-sized piece’ of butter … and said (aloud)
‘Who put the butter in the jam?’ … in fact I added, laughing to myself … ‘Who on earth, while making jam, thought – I know – I’ll put some butter in this!’
The effect of putting butter in the jam is to prevent (or largely prevent) a ‘scum’ forming on the top of the jam as it boils, giving a brighter, cleaner jam, and obviating the need to ‘skim off the scum’ – which always sounds pretty revolting – even though it isn’t.
Useful … yes … but who would have known this would be the result? Why would they even think to try it? Beats me!
(you know – it is the jam recipes that keep bringing random new people to the blog – maybe I should be writing microwave jam recipe books instead of fiction – lol)
On another jam note altogether – people will go and eat it! Unfortunately I couldn’t even enter this year’s village Autumn Show – though I had promised I would enter some jam this year – as people had only gone and eaten ALL the jam I made last year! I’m hiding a nice jar or two this year – so at least I can participate next year!
So – that’s my blog for today …
And the question still remains – if you know – do tell – Who (first) put the butter in the jam?
BTW – just to keep you good folks up to speed … my new book* A Respectable Life will be released on 28th October! (*for which you can blame my absence from the blog)