I have just updated my wife’s research site—The Silicon Valley Cultures Project—after several years of dormancy. There are many anthropologist who are followers of my blog and I wanted to spread the word. Jan suggested that I make a dish to celebrate and justify the announcement on a food blog.
Tag Archives: jam
I found a new produce—new to me at least—at Trader Joe’s this week, Thomcord grapes. These grapes are a crossbreed of Thomson seedless and Concord grapes. They have dark purple skins and a wonderful flavor. While my wife Jan does not like grape jelly—growing up her mother bought nothing but Welch’s grape jelly—daughter Eilene loves it. She asked me to turn these grapes into a jam.
We have a new neighbor across the street and my usual practice has been to gift new neighbors with a jar of jam as a welcoming to the neighborhood. Surprisingly, I had no jam on hand—normally I have 4-5 jars ready to distribute or for personal consumption. I needed to make a new batch.
A few weeks ago I had some peaches sitting on the counter in danger of over ripening. Jam was the obvious solution. Jan thought it was “too sweet.” This flaw did not stop her from eating the entire jar in two weeks.
I have been making marmalade the same way for years for a Christmas giveaway. I bought a microplane zester that produced very fine bits of rind. Over time I have been experimenting with the recipe— no extra water, fine bits of zest and less and less sugar. This has produced an intensely flavorful marmalade.
Adapted from an Ina Garten recipe
When I was a child my mother, Claudia, would make strawberry jam every strawberry season. With five kids and a tight budget, it was one more way to stretch a dollar—even then commercial jelly was expensive. Whenever she did this, she would also bake bread—the smell of fresh bread and jam would fill the house. We would all gather around anticipating the treat of hot jam on warm bread just out of the oven.
Every Christmas for more than the last decade I have made marmalade as a giveaway. A few years ago, I bought a microplane zester that produced very fine bits of rind. I also stopped using any extra water, just the zest and juice of the oranges. This micro marmalade was an intense flavorful jam, but it did not make as much as the old way I had been using. This year I ended up giving away all of the marmalade I produced and we had none left for ourselves.
Every Christmas for more than the last decade I have made marmalade as a giveaway. a few years ago I started making special batches of intense jams that contained only the zest and juice of the oranges. Last weekend I was lemon bombed and I wondered if I could make a marmalade of just lemons.