Lovin’ Spoonful: Blueberry Plum Jam{25}

blueberry plum jam recipe

Delicious blue goo: blueberry plum jam by the spoonful

Blueberry Plum Jam: A Super Summer Flavor Combo

Early October is a time of year when my kitchen becomes my garden and orchard’s waiting room, where bags of fruit and flats of vegetables vie for counter space and my attention. Not that I’m complaining about an avalanche of farm fresh produce, it’s just such bounty waits for no one. The fruit flies and fungi are just waiting for me to make a false move. Decisions must be made and actions taken in a timely manner; do I eat it, can it, store it, freeze it or compost it?

seasonal jam blueberry plum

Blueberry plum jam before the setting point, when I test the flavor on a bowl of ice cream or yogurt.

Lucky for me plums and blueberries are a little more forgiving and tend to hold a week or two under refrigeration. That said, I finally got around to making a new flavor-combo jam: blueberry-plum. I grew the blueberries, and the Italian plums were a generous gift (along with peaches and nectarines) from the Washington State Fruit Commission. (They…complete…me.)

blueberry plum jam what's left of it

Taste-testing is an integral part (at least for me) of jam making, followed by some inspired fingerprinting.

Betting on the plum’s creamy sweetness as a fine foil to the blueberry’s tartness, I embraced this fruity marriage (after ample sampling) as an essential jam in my canning repertoire. The recipe follows:

Italian prune plums in jam

Blueberries and Italian prune plums: a match in the orchard, which led to a honeymoon in the kitchen.

RECIPE: Blueberry – Plum Jam

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds fresh Italian prune plums (about 4 cups chopped)
  • 2 pounds fresh blueberries (about 6 cups)
  • 3 cups of sugar
  • 2 limes

Preparation

  1. Makes 7-8 pints
  2. Wash fruit, let air dry on cloth towel
  3. Cut plums in half, remove seed, then quarter each half
  4. Add chopped plums and whole blueberries into a preserving pan (large shallow stock pot)
  5. Add sugar and juice of two limes
  6. Stir to incorporate, let it stand at room temperature for an hour
  7. Heat slowly until a simmer (sugar burns easily, so keep an eye on it.)
  8. After simmering and stirring for 15 minutes, turn off heat.
  9. Let it cool, and simmer for another 15 minutes at your convenience
  10. Repeat this step until jam thickens, which may take two to three more times
  11. You can get a good idea if the jam is thickening when it cools.
  12. I like this method because it’s more about evaporation than cooking which creates a richer, fresher flavor I think.
  13. When a thick consistency is reached, reheat and place in jam in jars with 1/2 inch head space, seal and process for 10 minutes in a water bath.

New to canning? I recommend a visit the the Sweet Preservation site, sponsored by the Washington State Fruit Growers Association, where there are some great resources and tips on home canning.

Available counter space: an endangered species at my house this time of year.

Showing left to right: corn relish, roasted red pickle peppers, (top middle jar) Peach Melba jam, blueberry-plum jam, roasted red pepper relish, and sweet-sour cucumber pickles

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