Cherry Jam

Homemade cherry jam
NOTE: You won't believe how good this is for something that is so quick and easy. Cherries are not always the first fruit you might consider for jam but they are one of my favourite. You can complicate matters by fiddling about with pectin or apple juice but this tastes just as good using jam sugar... it's not cheating honest. This make one standard jar but just multiply the ingredients to make more.


    450g (1lb) stoned cherries
    450g (1lb) jam sugar
    60ml lemon juice


    1. Sterilise your jars and lids by dishwashing on the highest heat setting or wash in soapy water and place in a low oven (about 130C) for 20 mins. Ensure that the jars are still warm when you pour the jam in to avoid the jar cracking with the heat
    2. Put the cherries in a saucepan or maslin pan and crush with a wooden spoon or potato masher to release the juice
    3. Add the lemon juice and cook on a medium heat for 5- 10 mins until the cherries soften
    4. At his point you can decide how much texture you want in your jam by either leaving them as they are or, for a smoother jam, pulping them with a spoon in a sieve over a bowl. Not all the pulp will go through the sieve but that's fine just return all the juice and pulp to the saucepan
    5. Add the sugar and heat while stirring until all the sugar has fully dissolved. DO NOT BOIL at this stage
    6. When all the sugar has dissolved turn up the heat and bring to a rolling boil for about 4 minutes
    7. Remove pan from the heat and test your jam has reached setting point by spooning a small amount onto a cold (from the freezer) saucer. This will cool it rapidly and if it wrinkles when you push it with your finger it is done. If not return to the heat for another two minutes and re-test
    8. Carefully pour your jam into the warm jars and seal tightly with a lid. A wax disk can be added to prevent mould forming but, if like me, you use straight away, this won't be necessary
    9. Store in a cool dark place