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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Apple Butter Jam Recipe


I call this recipe Apple Butter Jam because it's apple jam that bears a striking resemblance to apple butter, but with the addition of sugar, making it more of a jam than the purely concentrated apple sauce which is apple butter. This jam recipe tastes good on bread, crackers, and toast, and I'm sure I can think of lots of other good uses for it if I have enough time. It's suitable for canning in a water bath canner, and best of all, it contains no bought pectin, making it easier on the budget and for people without good sources of hard to find ingredients.



Ingredients
3.5 cups raw apple sauce
2 cups water
2 cups sugar + 1 cup sugar
Juice of 1 lemon + 1/2 a lemon
1 pinch ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Instructions
1. Puree raw apples (with the peels- why waste them when they taste terrific in this recipe?) in a blender or food processor until you get 3.5 cups of apple sauce. If you need to add up to half a cup of water to the apples while blending to help the machine along, then that's fine.

2. Mix apple sauce, water, juice of one lemon, 2 cups of sugar, ginger, and cinnamon in a medium sized pot.

3. Bring to a boil, then cook over a medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 25 minutes.

4. Add 1 more cup of sugar and the juice of half a lemon to the mixture, allowing it to cook for 10 minutes more.

5. Test to see if the apple jam has thickened up by putting a dab of  the apple sauce on a plate and freezing for a few minutes. If it becomes hard, and is a thick spreadable thing instead of runny sauce, your apple jam is ready. If it is still runny, continue cooking a bit longer and test it every few minutes.

6. Turn off the flame and let the apple butter cool before using. If canning, do so at this point.

7. Use as you would any jam. Enjoy!

Note: 
When I first tried out this recipe, I made it with 2 cups of sugar instead of 3, and it didn't gel up properly until I added another cup of sugar, and more lemon to balance out the sweetness. This recipe could easily work well if you add all the sugar at once, but since I haven't tried it the other way, I'm just including what worked for me, but feel free to experiment.


If you refrigerate this and don't can it, it should last a while, as the sugar and the acid in the recipe act as a preservative.

Have you ever made apple butter or apple jam? Would this recipe more easily be defined as jam or as apple butter?
What is your favorite way to use jam?


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