I found a basket of fresh apricots at my local farmstand. They were irregular-sized, some slightly bruised, and very fragrant. They were perfect for golden apricot jam.
This recipe uses a “less-sugar pectin”. I like the Sure-Jell brand as I have had zero problems with the jam setting. I do not work with Sure-Jell nor have I never spoke with them before – I just like the brand and it is fairly accessible to most people.
TIP: When making jam, have a few frozen plates in your freezer. This is for the frozen plate test which helps ensure that your jam will set (and not be runny). More information on this test below.
TIP: Apricot jam may take up to two weeks to set while in jars stored in pantry. As long as you successfully do the frozen plate test (tip above) your jam will set fine but may take a little longer than other jams.
Preservation method: Waterbath canning
Difficulty level: Moderate
You will need clean pint jars and closures, a boiling-water canner, rack, jar lifter, canning funnel, and wooden skewer
Makes about 3-4 pints of jam
3 1/2 pounds fresh, ripe apricots
2 tbsp. bottled lemon juice (use bottled to ensure correct acidity)
4 1/2 cups sugar
1 package Sure-Jell Less Sugar Pectin
Place rack in the bottom of a boiling water canner, then place empty jars on the rack. Add water to the jars and the canner until the jars are about two-thirds full. Cover the canner and bring the water to a simmer over medium heat. Place lids in a small saucepan, cover with water, and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Do not boil. Keep lids hot until ready to use.
Apricots skins do not need to be removed. Simply wash apricots and cut in half, remove pits. Chop apricots into large pieces. Place in a large pot or Dutch oven.
Measure sugar in a large bowl. Do not reduce the amount of sugar as your jam may not set. Combine 1/4 cup sugar from the measured amount and combine with a package of Sure-Jell less sugar pectin. Stir this mixture into the fruit along with the lemon juice.
Bring fruit mixture to a rolling boil (a boil that doesn’t stop bubbling when stirred) on high heat, stirring constantly.
Stir in remaining sugar and bring back to a rolling boil that cannot be stirred down. Once boiling, start a timer for exactly one minute, stirring constantly. Remove pot from heat. Skim off any foam with a metal spoon or spatula.
[To ensure jam will set, I like to use the frozen plate test. Grab one of the frozen plates from your freezer that was mentioned at the top of this post. Put a small dollop of jam on the frozen plate and let it sit for about 30 seconds. If you can run a spoon or finger through the jam and the jam stays separated it is ready. You want to have made a nice clear path with the spoon or your finger without the path closing back together. If the jam runs together and is super liquidy it will not set.]
Ladle jam into hot jars allowing 1/4″ headspace.
Remove air bubbles with wooden skewer and readjust headspace if needed. Wipe jar rims with damp cloth and ensure there is no fruit or gel on the rims of the jars (or the jars may not seal). Apply lids and bands and adjust until fingertip tight. Place jars in boiling water canner.
When all jars are in the canner, adjust the water level in the canner so that it covers the jars by at least one inch. Cover the canner with a lid and bring water to a full rolling boil over high heat. Once the water is boiling hard and continuously, begin counting the processing time of 10 minutes.
Once full time is complete, turn off heat and let jars sit in canner an additional five minutes (this standing time allows the pressure inside the jars to stabilize and reduces the likelihood of liquid loss that could otherwise occur when the jars are removed.)
Remove jars and place on a kitchen towel-lined space. The towel will help reduce the chance of jar breakage. Do not dry the lids or jars at this point. You do not want to disturb the lids while the seals are being formed. Allow jars to cool for 24 hours before removing bands and wiping down jars. Date jars and store in a cool dry place for up to one year.
This recipe is not a sponsored post. I was not paid for this post. All opinions are my own. Recipe by Sure-Jell