5@5 is a daily, food-related list from chefs, writers, political pundits, musicians, actors, and all manner of opinionated people from around the globe.
‘Tis the season to be canning. The act of "putting up" preserves those summer days past of peaches, tomatoes and strawberries, as well as fall favorites of cranberry and quince long into the impending wintry months.
If anyone knows a thing or two about jamming, it's Rachel Saunders. Saunders is the author of The Blue Chair Jam Cookbook, and founder of Blue Chair Fruit - her Oakland-based company that makes jams and marmalades from produce sourced from local organic farmers.
She's found her way into the 5@5 hot seat and is ready to jam out.
Top Five Tips for Jamming: Rachel Saunders
If you have a pan that is not wide enough, your mixture will be too deep and will have to cook much longer in order to lose the requisite amount of moisture. This leads to an overcooked flavor. A wide pan, on the other hand, allows a maximum of evaporation to happen in a minimum of time, keeping the bright flavor of the fruit intact.
My favorite pan is the 11.5-quart Mauviel hammered copper jam pan from France. Its sloping high sides and extremely even heat distribution make it perfect for jam making."
2. Always make a small batch
3. Always make your flavor adjustments to the room temperature mixture before the final cooking
4. Always use perfectly ripe fruit; it has the best flavor!
5. Always measure your fruit and sugar by weight
Is there someone you'd like to see in the hot seat? Let us know in the comments below and if we agree, we'll do our best to chase 'em down.