Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Pear and lemon jam

This is actually three kilos - the last of the crop.

Ok, this really is the final batch. Quite frankly I'm a bit fed up of making jam now anyway. As with so many fruits this year, we have had a super crop of pears. Only two of us in the house will eat them, so I needed to find an alternative way of using them. I googled and decided this sounded like a winner. It's the first time of making it, so who knows .....

(I'm writing this as an afterthought because I have now made the 'jam'. I had it boiling for an hour and a half and it still wasn't really set very well. I'd added some more pectin too. Still, it tastes nice despite it being more like a syrupy sauce than a jam. Personally, if I were making it again, I would half the water in the recipe below and maybe add some apple quarters or crab apples in the cooking stage to up the pectin levels)

2 kilo pears, peeled, cored and chopped
3 lemons, grated zest and strained juice of
1 kilo granulated sugar
Liquid pectin
1 litre water (please see note above)

I add this picture because I had to laugh. I'm normally a very tidy cook, but for whatever reason (hormones I suspect) I made an absolute mess. Fortunately I was wearing an apron, but zest still managed to get down my top :( 

Prepare the fruit and put in large pan. Add lemon zest, juice and water. Boil gently until the fruit is soft. Add the sugar and pectin (see label for quantity). Bring to the boil, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Keep at a rolling boil for 15 mins. Test for set.

I had read that this jam was very difficult to set. Mine took 90  mins in total and still wasn't really set like a proper jam.
Decant into warm sterilised jars.

After 30 mins rolling boil. Still a lot of liquid left at this stage. 

Taste wise, this was half way between a jam and a marmelade. The lemon juice added a fresh tartness that was the perfect foil for the sweet pears. Personally, I think even non pear lovers will like this, but I'll test it out on Mr D and let you know!

I had a delivery whilst I was cooking and the young delivery man commented on how lovely the music was .... Cimarosa's Requiem! Who would have thought it? It took me back to the days when I used to play Gregorian chants to my bottom set year 10 French class (almost all boys) to help them concentrate. One lad, who was not well known for his classical tastes, said "it's actually not that bad miss". It pleased me no end :)


  1. I made this last year (I think we had about 30kgs of pears!! - and that was after telling neighbours to help themselves) I upped the lemon juice and used 'jam' sugar. I don't find it very jam like, but it makes a great 'sauce' for a self saucing steamed pudding/ cake thing, especially if you add lemon or ginger to the sponge :)
    I also preserved some in halves poached in red wine and spices - and will be doing this again with the last of the crop (the small ones) - I have some pretty jars for this and will be gifting some out at Xmas - nice warmed through and topped with a large blob of whipped vanilla cream :D

    1. Blimey - 30kg of pears would over face me I think! I'll definitely try it with a sponge. I imagine it might make a nice trifle base too? I really wish I could persuade more of the family to like them, but they just don't :(

  2. We used to make pear and ginger jam, really nice.

    1. Oh yes, that sounds likes nice combo - I love the warm spiciness of ginger.

  3. I love pears and lemons, So just toss some over to me and I will eat them.
    Your jam/sauce sounds lovely.

    cheers, parsnip

    1. They might be slightly mangled by the time they reach you.... It certainly tastes good regardless of what it's decription would be!

  4. I'm not keen on pears but I think this would make a great sauce for a steamed pudding. I hope your OH enjoys it. Jx

    1. Mr D tasted a spoonful. I didn't tell him what it was and he said it was nice before I told him it was pear, so with a sponge and some icecream, I think I could get away with it! :)

  5. This sounds delicious; I love pears. Thank you so much for sharing. :)

  6. Those look like really nice pears.

    That is a lot of water in your recipe. If you think about it with most jam making we are boiling off the moisture to get the fruit and sugar to set, so adding that amount seems a bit counter-productive. A good idea of yours to use less next time and add apples to it to try and get a firmer set.

    But as others have suggested it would make a wonderful sauce for a steamed pudding. Any of my jams that don't set get labelled as sauces for ice cream etc. Nothing is ever wasted is it.