Sure enough, when we got back home my 'helpers' melted away, leaving me alone in the kitchen with an unfeasible amount of soft fruit. I churned out a couple of batches of strawberry jam, and also did a large (2kg) batch of raspberry, before reluctantly freezing the remaining rasps. And the next day, trying to get at least a token contribution to the whole process, I was flatly informed that writing labels was "boring". Well, I shall label them myself: "Tim's Solo Raspberry Jam".
1kg fresh raspberries
- Put a dinner plate in the freezer. Sterilise your equipment: 4 x 1 lb jars and lids or 8 x 1/2 lb ones, a ladle and a jam funnel. I sterilise the jars by washing them then placing them upside down on the oven rack, setting the oven to 140oC and keeping them there for 30 minutes or so.
- Measure the sugar in to a heatproof bowl, and heat for 5 minutes or so in the oven.
- Put the raspberries in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat until the juices begin to run, then add the warmed sugar.
- Bring to a boil, skim, and boil for 5 minutes or so, until setting point has been reached. To test for set, drip a couple of drops of the jam onto the cold plate. Leave to cool for a few seconds. If it is ready, then the surface will wrinkle when you push the drop with your fingernail. (Or you can just stick your finger in it and see if it has a slightly sticky, jammy consistency rather than a syrupy one.)
- Remove pan from heat and leave to sit for 10 minutes before ladling the jam into the sterilised jars and sealing.