I wanted to make an unusual seasonal jam so was instantly keen to try out this fuss free recipe from http://www.bbcgoodfood.com . The subtlety of the vanilla alongside the sharp sweetness of the rhubarb, lemon juice and sugar is delicious. Have it on toast or spoon it on to yoghurt and welcome in the spring!
You can recycle old jam jars but make sure you sterilise them first by washing them in soapy water then popping the jars and lids in the oven for approx. 10 mins at gas mark 1/140 degrees (or a dishwasher cycle should do it).
The jam takes 10 mins to prepare and 20-30 mins to cook. Don’t worry if it all looks dry when you put it in the pan – after a few minutes it will become wet and sticky.
For alternative preserves recipes (marmalade, spiced apple chutney and chilli jam) click here http://katielovescooking.wordpress.com/category/preserves/.
Rhubarb and vanilla jam (makes 5-6 jars)
1kg rhubarb, weighed after trimming, cut in to 3cm chunks
1kg jam sugar (or 1kg caster sugar plus 1 x 8g sachet pectin)
2 vanilla pods, halved lengthways
Juice of 1 lemon
Put the rhubarb in to a large saucepan along with the sugar and halved vanilla pods. Heat gently, stirring until the sugar has dissolved, then stir in the lemon juice. Keep the lid off to help the mixture reduce down, and boil for 10-20 mins, until the jam is sticky. Don’t worry if it seems a little thinner than normal as it thickens as it cools.
Once the jam is ready let it cool for 15 mins before ladling it in to the warm sterilised jars and sealing. Will keep for 6 months in a cool, dark place.