Friday, November 07, 2008

yes we can

I don't know why it hadn't occurred to me that my newfound appreciation for canning coincides so beautifully with the election of a president who has lifted our hopes with a slogan so beautifully affirming of both the generous possibility of human communities and jam preservation.  Yes, we can.

Who knew that my own little efforts at food security would resonate so elegantly with this exciting moment in history?

The passionfruit vine in our backyard grew crazy this year, so I've been enjoying the challenge of figuring out ways to preserve it.  

In that spirit, here's how I have been making passionfruit jam:

about 30 ripe passionfruits (really, though, some are awfully little, so make it more like 34)
2 1/2 limes
about 4 lbs of sugar

Get the pulp out of the passionfruits.  My preferred method, to get most of the pulp but few of the seeds, is to cut the stem-end of the fruits off, scoop the pulp and seeds and everything into my little food processor, and run it for a few seconds.  The food processor frees the good, tasty pulp from the seeds.  Then, you can pour it through a strainer, into a bowl.   Add the lime juice, and set it aside.   (I think a few seeds make a nice addition to the jam, so I let a few of them through, too.)

Put the rest of the passionfruits--the wrinkly outside--into a big pot, and add water until at least half of them are submerged.  Boil them for at least 30 minutes, until the white pithy parts are all moist and swollen and kind-of purplish.

Cool the fruits you've just boiled, and peel the outer, crunchy skin away from the now-moist pithy pulp part.  Compost the skin, and put the inside pulp layer into the food processor.  I only have a little food processor, so I do about 6 fruits at a time, adding about 1/4 cup of the water from the boiling pot into each batch.  Blend the pulp until it's milkshake-thick.  (You'll end up adding about 1 1/2 cups of the water from the pot you'd boiled the fruits in.)

Now, as you put all the pulp and the juice into a big pot for turning into jam, measure the volume, and add an equivalent amount of sugar.  Bring it to a boil, and watch until it begins to turn jammy.  It doesn't take long--apparently, there's a good amount of pectin in that pulp.

Put the jam into jars, and process in boiling water bath. 

1 comment:

feminist_mom said...

looks yummy!! yes we will doesn't have the same ring! And great translucent colors.... time to get those pics downloaded from CA trip tomorrow between things.... and maybe try to cook up a pumpkin sometime later this week? have a good sunday!