Blue Ribbon Apricot-Amaretto Jam!

Last weekend, we took all the kids to the fair! Who doesn’t enjoy and remember trips to the fair? It’s very lucky that we were able to take our teens with us for this very oh, so traditionally American event – and they loved it!

But then who doesn’t like going on rides and stuffin’ their faces with funnel cake??

One of the most exciting parts of going to the fair this year was that I entered a few jams into the jamming competition at the fair!! I picked the two jams that I made and fell in love with in England, a Peach-Earl Grey and the Apricot-Amaretto. 

Apricot-Amaretto Jam made in England, Nov ’12

On Monday afternoon, we were able to find out the results of the competition and it turns out that the Apricot-Amaretto Jam won First Place!! A BLUE RIBBON!!! When I saw my jar of jam there on the shelf with a blue ribbon, I was too shocked to speak. My teens on the other hand put their hand on my shoulder and were like “better luck next time,” in their broken English. We had to walk out of the building with the jams and ribbon in hand before they understood that it was a first place ribbon. There was whooping & hollering all the way back to the car!! After all, Marin, my “daughter,” had helped me to make the winning jam and can it!

The only part of the recipe that I have changed over the past two years is to add a bit of the amaretto in just before closing the lid and processing in the boiling water bath, it brings out the flavor of the amaretto nicely and I really enjoy just the hint of something boozy in the finish!

If this is your first time canning, I suggest visiting the following tutorials to give yourself a good footing on the process of canning and boiling water baths – it’s quite easy, but getting everything ready to go before you start canning is the key to success! Not to mention, if it’s your first time, make sure you aren’t in a hurry and have plenty of time to address any problems or questions that may arise. Food in Jars is my go-to source for canning questions and how-to’s not to mention, Marissa has many especially tasty recipes to try!

 

I had a great time teaching my “daughter,” Marin, how to make jam and we have all been enjoying the jams! A family that jams together, stays together! Haha!

Anyways, this is a great small yield recipe, making about 4 pints (the second go-around, it yielded roughly 40 ounces) so you can keep a pot in your fridge, give a couple away and put one in your pantry – which for me is the perfect amount!

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups chopped and pitted apricots, roughly 2-3 lbs
  • 4 TBS lemon juice
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 100 ml of amaretto (we used Disaronno) or roughly 2 Cups, divided
  • 1 box Pectin

In large, stainless steel pot, mix apricots, lemon juice, sugar, and 1 cup of the amaretto.  Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat then immediately turn down to a simmer, stirring constantly to dissolve the sugar.

Boil the mixture while stirring often, until it thickens (approximately 15-20 minutes). Once a syrup-like consistency is achieved, stir in another 1/4 cup of the amaretto then remove from the heat and test the gel level on a cold plate from the freezer.

Skim off the foam (if any) and ladle the mixture into hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace.  Wipe the rim, center the lid on the the jar, and tighten the ring.  Process the jars in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes.  After 10 minutes, remove the lid from the processing pot and leave the jars in the water 5 more minutes before carefully removing them. Remove by lifting them straight up, out of the pot, resisting the urge to pour off the excess water and set them on a baking sheet lined with dish towels and leave them to rest at room temperature for at least 12-24 hours before moving.

Once cooled for 12-24 hours, loosen the rings and test each seal. If the seal has not set consider using that jar immediately as it will not and should not be stored in the pantry, or you can try to process it again but you will need a new lid.

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