The Great British Bake Off is back on our screens and I have been inspired to start baking once again!
For the first week I made good ol’ fashioned cup cakes to ease myself back into it. The true motive being to make sure I had something to munch on whilst all those delicious looking bakes were flashing before my eyes – well I hate feeling left out when there’s cake tasting going on.
Then this week, for some reason, I decided to take it further with not only making the viennese whirls recipe I’ve used before – but also with me making my own jam! Yes, that’s right, I made my own nectarine jam – on a week night! I had never attempted jam before so doing it with such a tight deadline (before the show started at 8pm) probably wasn’t the most sensible of ideas I’ve had – but amazingly it worked out! I wouldn’t say I perfected it – it’s a bit too chunky really – but for a first go it wasn’t half bad.
Now, I’ve seen how they make it on #GBBO with thermometers and gadgets and pectin (whatever the hell that is) – well I don’t have any of that. All I used was a saucepan, a wooden spoon, a jar and some specially bought wax paper discs. I had to run to a shop after work to get the wax discs – and luckily the baking section in Sainsbury’s came through with a preserving pack which included the discs that I needed.
I’ll go straight out there and say this; nectarine jam is easy to make. I can’t speak for other jams but nectarine jam is quick and a pleasure to make. If you’re a novice jam maker, like me, but want to give it a go – try this one! Here’s how I did it.
Nectarine Jam – makes around 500g
4 ripe nectarines
190g granulated sugar
2 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon of spices, of your choice
Glass jars enough for 500g of jam
- Chop but DON’T PEEL the nectarines, depends how chunky you want it
- Put nectarines, sugar and lemon juice into a saucepan and simmer (high simmer-low boil) for 40 minutes
- With 20-25 minutes to go – preheat oven to 130C/250F/1/2 gas mark and place clean glass jar in for 15-20 minutes
- Add in spices of your choice – almond extract, vanilla extract, cinnamon, ginger – anything you like and cook for 5 minutes
- Skim foam off surface
- Remove jar from oven (with oven gloves please – we don’t want any hand burning accidents) and pour jam into jar, immediately place a wax disc on top to prevent mildew
And that is how I made easy peasy nectarine jam. With it practically being chop and leave – I still had time to do other stuff around it as my attention wasn’t particularly needed for it which also makes it a perfect recipe for me!
Week three of Bake Off coming up, and it’s bread week. Does anyone have any suggestions of good (and easy – it’s a week day remember) bread recipes that you think would be good for me to have a go at?