Friday, May 20, 2016

Tamarind and plum preserves

In the interest of using up the fresh tamarinds, which had been in the fridge a while, and the rest of the plums after making a giant plum-studded cake for the freezer, I realized I could make jam.

Haven't made jam for ages, and it's not so hard.  I used half a dozen of the fresh tamarinds, which I shelled and took the membrane off,  then sort of broke up and poured about a cup of boiling water over it. Once it was cool enough to put fingers in, I worked it over to release the pulp from the seeds, which it doesn't want to do, then strained the lot into a bowl.  The pulp goes through the strainer pretty well, giving you a thick liquid to work with.

And the plums were black dessert plums which I'd got at a good price, and I just cut them into chunks.  About a dozen plums in all. Then with just one cup of sugar, no need to go mad with the sugar, I boiled the lot together until it thickened a bit, then added in only half a pouch of pectin, and went on cooking for a while.

It mostly filled two mason jars, and the day after, once it had cooled completely, made a great preserve to spoon over hot biscuits, more of those I made recently and froze, the ones with the golden raisins and the chopped walnuts.  

Since there's no sugar in the biscuits, and not too much in the preserves either, you get the sweetness of the fruits, and a nice tang.  You could use this preserve as a sauce with meat, if you eat meat, too.  Or fish possibly.  Or give as a nice little gift to a lucky friend.

Anyway, it was pretty good, and not a massive enterprise, unlike the way cookbooks act as if you were about to embark on a space mission.

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