Rhubarb Season (2) – Rhubarb Vanilla Jam

Rhubarb Vanilla Jam 1

As I’ve written in my previous post, there is quite a big amount of rhubarb in my kitchen right now. My family loves jam on their toasts or rolls in the morning, so there is no way around cooking rhubarb jam. It was kinda hard for me to decide what gelling/ jam sugar (gelling sugar contains pectin as a gelling agent) to take because you have to choose between fruitiness and preservatives. In Germany gelling sugar comes in three different kinds (1:1, 2:1 and 3:1). The first number indicates what amount of fruit you use in relation to the sugar, e.g. 1:1 means 1 part fruit/1 part sugar, 2:1 2 parts fruit/1 part sugar etc. I like fruity jams more, but the 2:1 and 3:1 gelling sugars have preservatives added to them (which I want to avoid – it’s homemade jam, after all), so I went for the 1:1 gelling sugar. I also figured, that rhubarb was soooo sour that it hopefully wouldn’t really matter. Well, the jam IS kinda sweet (but really eatable), so I definitely won’t use 1:1 sugar for sweeter fruits like strawberries or so. I’ll find some other way to make jam – I might go for an attempt with agar agar which is a gelatinous substance derived from seaweed. Anyway, this is what I did this time:

  • trim 1,3 kg (2,8 lb) rhubarb and cut into half-inch chunks
  • put in a big cooking pot and mix with 1 kg (2,2 lb) 1:1 gelling sugar
  • add 1 spoonful of vanilla extract
  • let stand overnight
  • next day purée the mixture (if you don’t want big chunks in your jam) and bring to a boil
  • then boil 4 minutes, stirring continuously
  • test for thickness (I always put a spoonful on a really cold plate): if it sets remove from heat, if not stir for another minute and test again
  • ladle jam into jars as long as jam is still hot
  • put lids on quickly
  • turn jars upside-down (I have no idea why, but that’s what my mother always did)
Upside-down jars

Upside-down jars

3 responses to “Rhubarb Season (2) – Rhubarb Vanilla Jam

  1. just saw this–will have to try myself! http://smittenkitchen.com/2009/05/rhubarb-cobbler/

  2. Pingback: Can Jam #5: “Rhubarb” & “Asparagus”– Jam, Cordial, BBQ Sauce & Pickled Asparagus « Family & Food & Other Things

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