PLUM & ROSEMARY PRESERVES
- 2 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 sprigs of rosemary plus a few 1 or 2 inch pieces for the jars
- 2 cups plum or pluot segments (peel, pit, and segment the plums into 8 or 10 wedges per fruit)
- 1/2 packet of Low sugar pectin (I really like Pomona's Universal Pectin, and, FYI, I do not first make the calcium water as directed. The pectin activates wonderfully on its own, but you must whisk like crazy to keep it from clumping)
Combine sugar, lemon juice, water and the rosemary in large stockpot and bring to boil while stiring to disolve sugar. Watch the heat as you want to boil, but not burn the sugar mixture.
Once the mixture has gone into solution (is clear) reduce heat and simmer until thick.
I find that 10 minutes generally thickens the syrup enough.
Remove the rosemary.
Add plums and return the mixture to a boil. Boil for about 5 minutes and be sure to stir frequently and gently.
Remove the plums from the pot and drain them in a sieve over a bowl to catch any excess juice.
Return the juice to the stockpot and boil, about 10 minutes. (the idea here is to get the juice to about 225degrees so if you have a candy thermometer you can get a more exact time frame)
Whisk in the pectin. If using the Pomona's without calcium water, whisk like mad. Return to boil for 1 minute (while whisking) then remove from heat.
Divide the fruit segments evenly among the jars and tuck rosemary sprigs into each jar.
Fill the rest of the jars with juice, and be sure that any jars you plan to process are filled to within 1/4 inch of the brim. Run a knife around the inside of each jar to release any air bubbles.
*if you have some remaining lumps of pectin undisolved, you can pour the juice through a strainer into the jars and generally it will fix the problem. it's important to try to get everything into your jars while piping hot so that you don't introduce bacteria.
If processing in a water bath, 10 minutes is plenty of time.
*I have not included the full instructions to process the jars as it is fairly standard, but if you would like instructions or tips on processing, let me know.