When life give you lemons - make lemonade (or put them in your G&T!) But what about when life gives you Gooseberries? The obvious would be make jam. But how about jam with a boozy kick. Gin Jam. Gin & Gooseberry Jam to be precise. Yup. I put Gin in my Jam and rather good it was too. Fair enough there's a bit of novelty factor involved in being allowed to enjoy gin at breakfast time but it also works well in terms of flavour. My lovely friend Julia was chief taste tester and declared it inspired, tangy and not overly sweet. I'd tend to agree. Cheers!
Gin & Gooseberry Jam
1 kg Gooseberries
1 kg Granulated Sugar
- Wash, top and tail the gooseberries, discarding any that are damaged.
- Put the gooseberries and the 150ml of Gin into a preserving/large pan. Bring to the boil then turn down and simmer for about 10 minutes until the fruit is softened. At this point I blitzed the fruit mixture with a stick blender to give a smoother consistency, this is optional if you like a coarser jam.
- Stir in the sugar and cook over a low heat until the it has fully dissolved.
- Increase the heat and boil rapidly for 8-10 minutes before testing to see if your jam is set.
- Meanwhile, sterilise your jam jars by washing thoroughly in very hot soapy water. Rinse in clean hot water then put them upside down on a rack on top of a baking sheet in a 140c oven until they are dry.
- To test if the jam has reached setting point you can use a digital/jam thermometer to check for a temperature of 105c. Alternatively place a saucer in the freezer to chill prior to dropping a small spoonful of jam onto to it. Allow it to cool for a minute then push your finger through the jam – if it wrinkles it’s ready, if not, boil for a few more minutes and check again.
- Once the jam is ready, turn off the heat, skim off any scum or use a knob of butter to disperse it.
- Carefully ladle the jam into the sterilised jars and seal whilst it is still hot.
I asked my food blogging colleagues to share their recipes for unusual jams and variations of Gooseberry jam. Here's what they came up with, so much more to jam making than simply Strawberry and Raspberry.