Plum Jam

jars of chutneyThis is incredibly easy as you don’t need to chop the fruit at all.  As the fruit cooks it softens and you can remove the stones before potting.

2.5kg desert plums
juice of a lemon
850ml water
2.5kg sugar
knob of butter

Place the plums, lemon juice and water in a suitable pan (if you don’t have a preserving pan, a large heavy-based stainless steel saucepan is best) and gently simmer for about 30 minutes, until the fruit is soft and reduced.  Remove the pan from the heat and dissolve the sugar by stirring.  Once the sugar has dissolved, add the butter and bring to the boil, boiling rapidly for 15 minutes.  Stir frequently until setting point is reached.  Remove the pan from the heat.  Remove the plum stones and skim off any scum.  Pot the hot jam into warm, sterilised jars.  Seal. 
Label and store for up to six months.  Refrigerate once opened.

Makes just over 4kg.

Lemon and Grapefruit Chutney

Lemon treeFather of the Tribe has successfully grown lemons over the last 9 years – our tree first bore fruit in our sunshine filled apartment in South London.  It is now thriving in Hampshire.  Usually used to add to Gin and Tonics, I thought that I would try making a sunny chutney to see us through the long, dark winter nights!

8 lemons, washed and finely chopped (skin and flesh)
2 grapefruit, washed and finely chopped (skin and flesh)
8 onions, finely chopped
250g sultanas
750g Demerara sugar
2tbsp mustard seeds
900ml white wine vinegar

Put the chopped lemons, grapefruit and onions in a bowl with the salt and leave for 24 hours.  Put the fruit and onions and any liquid into a suitable pan together with the rest of the ingredients and mix well.  Bring to the boil and simmer for 2 hours until the chutney is thick.  Pot the hot chutney into warm, sterilised jars.  Seal.
Label and store for up to two years.  Leave for one month before using.  Refrigerate once opened.

Makes 2.5kg.

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