Auntie’s Gooseberry Jam

Almost all of the Cable family like gooseberries and the more sour they are, the better. While gooseberries in our household are eaten in very many dishes, one my favourite things is to make gooseberry jam and as my nephew likes to take a jar of homemade jam with him after visiting me, I need to have plenty in stock.

Ripe gooseberries growing on a plant

This is the recipe I use.


Ingredients

For every 0.5kg of gooseberries, use 200ml water and 600g of granulated sugar. I used:

  • 1.5kg gooseberries
  • 600ml water
  • 1.8kg granulated sugar

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 140 degrees C (275 degrees F).

Wash the gooseberries and top and tail them.

Gooseberries, washed, topped and tailed

2. Wash the gooseberries and top and tail them. Cut out any over ripe or bruised bits, using only the best fruit.

3. Wash your jam jars in hot soapy water, rinse well and place upside down in the hot oven for about 20 minutes.

Plates in the freezer

4. Put a couple of saucers into the freezer.

Tip the gooseberries into a large heavy-bottomed pan and add the water. Heat gently until the gooseberries soften.

Tip the gooseberries into a large heavy-bottomed pan and add the water. Heat gently until the gooseberries soften.

5. Tip the gooseberries into a large heavy-bottomed pan and add the water. Heat gently until the gooseberries soften.

Add the sugar and heat until it is dissolved.

6. Add the sugar and heat until it is dissolved.

Turn up the heat and boil rapidly for about 20 minutes. Take care that it doesn't boil over.

7. Turn up the heat and boil rapidly for about 20 minutes. Take care that it doesn’t boil over and you should notice that it eventually turns pink.

Cold plate wrinkle test

8. Turn off the heat and drop a teaspoon of the jam onto one of the cold saucers. Leave it for a minute or two and push the edge of the mixture with your finger. If it wrinkles, it is ready. If not, turn the heat up under the jam again and boil rapidly for another few minutes. Repeat the rapid boiling and cold plate test until the jam wrinkles. Don’t be tempted to over boil for a firmer set as it will affect the flavour of the jam.

Skim off any scum that has appeared on the top of the jam.

9. Skim off any scum that has appeared on the top of the jam.

Using a funnel, carefully pour the jam into the hot jars

10. Using thick oven gloves arrange the hot jars on a heatproof surface (I use a wooden chopping board) Then using a funnel, carefully pour the jam into the hot jars until it reaches about half way up the shoulder of each jar. You need a little space in the jar to create a vacuum when you seal it.

Sealed jars of gooseberry jam

11. Wipe the rim of the jar with a clean cloth before you seal it. Before fully sealing the jars, leave them to settle by allowing them to stand for about 15 minutes with the lids just resting on the top.

sdr

12. Label and date the jars.

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