Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Grape Jam

Who would have thought I would one day be making jam out of grapes from my own backyard ! I managed to pick about 5 kilo from an unruly grape vine and it seems too much of a waste to give them all to the cows.

No idea of the variety but these were not tart. Only the purple grapes were used. The lucky cows (Scarry and Baby) were given all the green ones.

The actual act of cooking the jam is fast. It is the prep that takes a bit of work. First the skin has to be separated from each individual grape and then the seeds removed. I did all the prep work while watching TV at night.

Grape Jam
It is a nice jam. Actually it tasted much like plum jam. Will I make it again....yes definitely....if I can gather enough grapes from the garden. It is worth the effort.

No pectin or setting agent is used as the jam sets beautifully with just the addition of some lemon juice.

grape vodka jam

Makes 1.6 Litre

2 kg 'purple' grapes
1 kg sugar
2 Tbsp lemon juice

2 Tbsp vodka

1. If you do not have a thermometer for testing the setting point, put 2 saucers into the freezer for use later to check the jam's setting point.

2. Remove any unwanted spoilt grapes. Rinse. Squeeze each grape individually between the thumb and index finger. Put the flesh and juice in one pot and the skin in the food processor.

flesh and skin of grapes
Pop the flesh out.

3. Boil the flesh for 5 minutes. The flesh would separate from the seeds. If they are still stuck, mash lightly with a potato masher. Scoop or sieve out all the seeds. The content would be quite watery.

4. Pour some of the boiled 'flesh' liquid into the food processor. Blend until the grapes skin is really fine.

5. Pour the flesh, skin and lemon juice into a thick base pan.

6. Bring to a rapid boil. Add the sugar and continue to boil rapidly for 15-20 minutes or until jam sets*. Stir occasionally and scoop out the floating scum.

7. Add the vodka and use a lighter to burn off the alcohol or just stir to mix.

8. Pour into hot sterilised* jars, seal, label and store in a cool place.

grapes vodka jam

*Sterilising jars
To sterilise the preserving jars wash them in hot soapy water and rinse with boiling water. Remove and put the glass jars into an oven at 120°C for 15 minutes or until the jars are required. Do not at any stage dry the jars with a tea towel.

*Setting Point
Test for setting by dropping a small amount of jam onto a cold saucer. After a few minutes, push it with your finger. If it wrinkles and forms a skin it is ready. If it does not, boil longer and try again.
Alternatively test with a thermometer. Setting point is reached when the temperature reaches 105C.

purple grape vodkajam

1. Add more sugar if your grapes are on the tart side or if you prefer your jam sweeter.

2. The jam will look watery but will set beautifully.

1. If you are doing the initial prep at night, cover the skin and flesh and leave to overnight in the fridge.

2. The grape skin gives the jam a good texture.

3. If you make jam regularly, invest in a thermometer. It is much easier than trying to test with a freezing saucer.


Anh said...

This is really interesting! I wonder how it tastes. Sweet?

ann low said...

WOW! This is definitely delicious with beautiful colour. We can't grow grapes here but can only make jam from tropical fruits.

Elyn said...

This look so good! But probably wont be able to do it in my country here :)

Tuty @ ScentofSpice said...

Did you process the grape twice? I saw it on step 2 where you put the grapes in the food processor, then on step 4.

Please advise.

Sinner said...

Anh - It taste like plum jam. The sweetness depends on how much sugar is used.

Anncoo - Thanks. I would love to try tropical fruits jam.

Elyn - Which country are you in ?

Tuty - In step 2, the grapes were put in the food processor to save washing another pot. They are process in step 4.

Dana said...

hi...it looked interesting. is there any substitute for vodka? thanks

Sinner said...

Hi Dana, you can leave out the vodka. Any other alcohol would be too strong.

Anonymous said...

Hi Sinner,

Yummy looking grape jam. I made my own plum jam last yr too and I absolutely love it.We don´t have grapes growing in our garden though but I´ll surely like to try making this grape jam when grapes are in season.


Sinner said...

Hi purplegirl,

Wish I had known grape jam taste like plum jam, then I wouldn't have hesitated. Managed to pick another kg for jam today. That will be the last for this season.

Must make sure I give the grape vine more care and attention next year. At least with commercial grapes, the grapes will be bigger in size - no need to squeeze so many. lol

Anonymous said...

Hi Sinner,

Oh yes....if I´m going to make this jam, must make sure I get hold of those BIG seedless purple grapes...otherwise very ´sian´ to peel & deseed it. Actually I do peel all the grapes b4 I eat them so am already an expert in that. DH thinks I´m crazy. Haha.


Unknown said...

thanks for the info..by the way, is it possible to make it using a Breadmaker?

without the vodka, will the jam get spoilt faster? wht's the purpose of the vodka as I noticed tht you have tht in most of the jam recipes?

Sinner said...

Hi purplegirl,

If you can get hold of seedless grapes, you can actually skip so many steps. Should be able to dump the whole grapes straight into the food processor. Wah...save so much time.

Actually I peel the skin before eating some grapes too. Sometimes their skin is so thick.

Sinner said...

Hi Dana,

I have never used a breadmaker for making jam so don't know how it works or how hot it gets. This jam is made without pectin so needs to be boiled to a setting point of 105C.

Don't actually know whether there is a function of alcohol in jam. I guess it is just an ingredient I like adding to my jam.

Dawn (KitchenTravels) said...

Beautiful photos with the grapes and leaves. I'm so envious that you have grapes right out your back door!

fnkykntr said...

Great recipe, many thanks for posting - I scored a bagful of Merlot grapes for helping harvest at a vineyard last weekend and they made lovely jam.

Jen Cheung said...

the jam looks really fresh and yummy. i havent had jam in awhile lahhh!!

have a nice day!
jen @ www.passion4food.ca

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