It's that time of year again

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Highlands John's picture
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Today the house is filled with the sickly sweet smell of boiling sugar and strawberries, yes it's jam making time.

Yesterday it was my favorite, blackcurrant.

A lot of guests really appreciate home made. Any one else make their own?

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Bommelhoeve's picture
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We also take the jam from the jar and scoop it into small jars.   We do only homemade jams like Rubarb/Anice/Cinnamon and Rubarb/banana.

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Highlands John's picture
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We do the same, little dishes on the side. Less waste and looks nicer than jars on the side.

Breakfast Diva's picture
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Our breakfast always has a muffin or pastry/biscuit. In the beginning we used to also have toast, but we threw out so much of it we stopped serving it altogether. We don't even have a toaster in the kitchen anymore.

Breakfast Diva's picture
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I'm curious. What is it that you're serving that takes jam? The only time I serve jam/jelly is when I serve biscuits, and that's maybe once a month.

Highlands John's picture
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We make bread rolls every morning and guests often like to put jam or marmalade on them (as in photo).

Like breakfast diva, we used to give each table a rack of toast by default but so much of it just went out to the chickens that now the menu says (paraphrased) "You're getting a freshly baked bread roll, if you want toast as well just ask".

Generic's picture
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I have home made jam on the table in small jars. The guests like it on toast, english muffins, etc.

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IronGate's picture
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I've wondered about communal jars of jam and other condiments. Apparently it's not really an issue for you? So many people seem to think everything is contaminated if THEY didn't open it, but I dislike the diner atmosphere that comes with the individual servings. 

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Generic's picture
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I use extremely small glass jars with built in covers. The opening is intentionally small. I keep small (demitasse) spoons and have it marked to use the spoons to take jam. They leave the spoon in the jam. The spoons are intentionally small as well, so they aren't mixed up with anything else and aren't useful.

In fact, I have a few intentionally useless spoons around. Like the one for sugar. Short handle, so you can use it to take sugar but you don't want to use it for anything else. Or a ceramic spoon with a long handle, so you know it's not your spoon, but for the sugar.

Inconvenient tools, teaching people to be civil in an uncivilized manner.

Madeleine's picture
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I scoop it out into very small ramekins. Anything left goes in the trash. Yesterday we had one guy who went thru 15 pats of butter and quite a lot of jam (he was spooning it out and eating it that way). He only had 2 slices of toast. Because he was essentially on his second breakfast at that point, I really loaded him up on the jam. Cleaned it out completely!

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Breakfast Diva's picture
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Our regulations here is that if it goes out on the table and is not totally consumed, it must be thrown out.

Generic's picture
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If that was the rules around here, I would have bought a collection of miniature jam jars (several of the jam companies make them for hotels) and I would have used those instead of communal jars. They want it, they use it, they don't, it's still there for the future and sealed.

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I take the jam from the jar and scoop it into small ramekins made for jam.   I've made peach preserves, blueberry, strawberry, and pear jam.  I also have done grape jelly and blackberry jelly.   If you need to buy store bought Bonne Maman is good and also Costco Kirkland Organic Strawberry jam is wonderful.

Madeleine's picture
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We have toast every other day with the eggs. Which is why I hope I can get out to get the blueberries!

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Thought of you when I saw this HJ. Are you into quinoa? Here is a recipe that is pretty dang neat. I pictured it with your fresh fruit and preserves... http://www.closetcooking.com/2013/07/blueberry-almond-and-amaretto-quinoa.html  from one of my favorite food bloggers who is in Canada and cooks in a kitchen the size of a closet. Smiling

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Always make my own: strawberry, peach, apricot and raspberry jams. Guests like them a lot and mention it on the reviews. Can not stand the store bought one.

Highlands John's picture
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Agree. And even worse are those little plastic pots of individual servings.

Breakfast Diva's picture
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Yumm! looks fab.

We've got some funny laws about making and using jams & jellies here, so I stay away from it. I do make a mixed berry sauce that I serve over ice cream or cheesecake for our delivered dinners. I also use it mixed into plain Greek yogurt and create a parfait.

 

Ice
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I make an awesome strawberry syrup!

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Ice
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I make an awesome strawberry syrup!

Ice
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It's so awesome it posted twice!

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Ice wrote:

It's so awesome it posted twice!

yes

Silverspoon's picture
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Ohh, that looks goood!  I'd like to fill a crepe with some of that jam and gobble it up!  yes

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Madeleine's picture
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I was going to go to the farmers mkt today to put in an order for 10 lbs of blueberries but my housekeeper decided she needed the day off. So, not making jam today. But will be this week sometime!

Generic's picture
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Actually, I make what we call jam, but I have been told by guests from south of the border that it's more preserves, since I like to use big pieces of fruit or sometimes whole fruit. But my jams are also generally more unusual, like cherry & amaretto jam or strawberry & balsamic jam.

Highlands John's picture
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Eric Arthur Blair wrote:

Actually, I make what we call jam, but I have been told by guests from south of the border that it's more preserves, since I like to use big pieces of fruit or sometimes whole fruit. But my jams are also generally more unusual, like cherry & amaretto jam or strawberry & balsamic jam.

They sound lovely.

We've tried some more unusual combinations, but they're not so popular with the guest. Rhubarb and ginger goes down well, but strawberry and mint wasn't and lemon & lime marmalade likewise (I think the problem with that is it has a bit of an odd consistency). 

I thought south of the border what we in the UK call jam, they call jelly. In the past when I've made jam that hasn't quite set properly, I've told DH to tell the guests it's conserve,  as it sounds a lot posher than "jam that didn't quite set properly". 

Generic's picture
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Use a thermometer and make sure the jam gets to 105c, which is set temp. (Set temp for jelly is 104c)

My understanding... preserves are big pieces or whole fruit, jams are pureed fruit, jelly is fruit juice, no pieces. Confuses me too. But locally we like big pieces of fruit, to our west and east they like smaller pieces. And to our south, completely pureed. But that's what I have been told.

The only jelly that I have ever made is tea jelly, with a local tea. For marmalade the biggest seller around here is cranberry marmalade. But sometimes I will use vanilla bean and I put the whole pureed bean in, because I think the little brown specks look really nice. 

My rhubarb is with hibiscus. My blueberry with lavender. 

If you are making strawberry, try adding something like basil instead of mint. And if you really want to do the mint, try a marmalade with lemon, ginger and mint. Smiling

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