Introduction: Apricot Raspberry Jam

Summer...I don't like the heat and I'm not a big fan on swimming, but there is one thing I LOVE about summer(besides fireworks). Summer fruit! There's nothing better than going to your local orchard, farmers' market or even your own backyard and picking summers best secret.That first bite is almost a time machine that can send you back to your childhood with it's sun-kissed skin and  juicy sweet juices as they ran down your chin. This jam has a wonderful mix of sweet and tangy. It goes well with soo many things. Bring a small jar to your next BBQ or picnic and use it as a sandwich spread or as a marinade on pork chops and chicken. It also goes well as an ice cream topper, pairs well with crackers a sharp cheese & wine, in the center of cupcakes for a wonderful secret surprise, pep up your morning oatmeal  and of course on toast. 

This is a small batch recipe so you won't need to buy a ton of fruit  and it won't cost a fortune. Plus, giving jam is a great gift for any occasion. People are always WOW'd when I tell them I didn't buy the jam/jelly I gave them, I made it. (Make sure you always save a couple jars for yourself).

Step 1: Important Information on Canning

Before we start, there's a couple of things we should talk about for those of you who have never canned or maybe need a refresher. It does take some work, but it will get easier the more you do- just as anything is. Please check out a few of these links if you are new to canning and plan on making it into a hobby or business. I will be going over every step throughly because it is very important to follow safe, santized, up-to-date methods. That being said, lots of people have different methods of preserving. Not all of them are safe and not all are up-to-date methods. If you find a recipe you'd like to try ALWAYS make sure to follow new standards to sanitize & seal the jars. Keep and use the 1st link below to follow new guidelines.
National Center for Home Food Perservation

Food in Jars Canning Blog
(LOVE this blog)


Step 2: Jams and Jellys, What's the Difference???

What is the difference between Jam & Jelly? Well thats a good question. Let's clarify this before we move on...

Jam: (see pic 1 & 2)
- Is always made from whole or cut fruits, cooked to a pulp with sugar, sometimes using/not using pectin and produces a thick fruity spread.
- Will be thick and move in jar when turned at an angle

Jelly: (see pic 3 & 4)
- Is made using only the juice of the fruit(cooking down the fruit with water), sugar and almost always pectin. It should be see-through and sparkling when finished
-Will be pretty firm and not move around when jar is turned at an angle

Step 3: Items Needed: Step 1

I will be breaking up the items needed as you will be refrigerating overnight to let the fruits get  acquainted and mingle.

 The fruit I used for this jam came straight from my backyard but feel free to buy store bought apricots and frozen raspberries if you don't have access to an orchard, farmers' market or your own.

Items needed:

1.5 pounds (approximately) of Apricots

1 cup raspberries
2 of the 3 Cups of Sugar
1 tsp. vanilla

Step 4: Step 1 Continued


Wash a Pint Mason Jar, Potato masher and a large bowl in:
Hot soapy water, rinsed in hot water and placed on clean paper towel
Can use a bowl and plastic wrap if you don't have a Pint jar, make sure to wash bowl as above 

Prepare the Fruit
 Rinse and cut the Apricots in half, removing the pits. Set aside apricot halves
 Rinse the Raspberries
 Wash hands

Add fruits to large mixing bowl
Mash with potato masher allowing the flavors to mix
Don't worry about any big pieces for now

Add 2 Cups Sugar

Add in 1 tsp. vanilla
Remix again making sure everything is well blended

Pour Mixture into Large Pint Jar( Washed in hot soapy water, rinsed in hot and placed on clean paper towel)
(or large enough bowl and cover with plastic wrap)
Wipe Rim with clean paper towel
Place clean lid on (washed in hot soapy water, rinsed in hot water and placed on clean paper towel)
Screw on clean ring

Place Mixture in Fridge overnight to mingle and blend together

Step 5: Set Up, Prep Work, and Sanitize

1. In empty dishwasher Place the following:(DO NOT put your dirty dishes in with these)

- All jars, lids and rings{5 half pint jars or 10-4oz. jars(pictured)}
- 2 to 3 Spatulas
- Pot ( that you are using for the Jam) 

2. Run your dishwasher with your regular detergent, make sure to have your heat settings on or use your sanitize setting.

3. Clean your entire work surface/counters with a solution of bleach/water or using Clorox wipes, etc...

4.  Wash Canner, canning intruments and a small pot 
(using brand new sponge or paper towels)

- In clean sink using hot soapy water wash the water bath canner, jar lifter, lid lifter and funnel
- Rinse all in hot water and allow to dry on clean paper towels

5. Fill your water bath canner, put on lid and set on high heat
- Once your water is boiling, turn heat down to medium and start on making the jam
- Fill your small pot with enough water to cover your clean lids and allow to simmer while making the jam

 Things to have on hand:
- hand sanitizer
- roll of paper towels

Step 6: Step 2 Prepare and Make the Jam

What you'll need:

Your refrigerated Jam mix
1 Cup of Sugar
Juice of 1 Lemon
Clean pot for making the jam

1.  Wash hands and Juice the lemon, set aside
2. Pour your Jam mix into a clean blender and blend till all the large piece of apricot are very small( matter of seconds)
3. Pour blended jam into clean pot,Wash hands again
4. Add 1 cup of sugar
5. Simmer over low/medium heat until fruit mix thickens stiring often to make sure it doesn't burn to the bottom of the pot
(to see if jam is ready, place spoon in freezer for a few minutes, scoop up some jam and see if it slowly runs off spoon. If not, keep simmering, if so, move on to step 6)
6. Bring to a boil stirring constantly for 3-5 minutes
7. Add lemon juice, stir well and remove from heat

-Sorry that some of the pics are alittle blurry.

Step 7: Filling the Jars

Wash hands or use hand sanitizer

-Remove lids from dishwasher and place in small pot with water that is simmering
-Remove jars from dishwasher and set on clean dry work surface/counters
-Using clean funnel, fill each jar with jam leaving a 1/4  to 1/2 inch head space
-Wash hands or use hand sanitizer
-Using clean damp( with hot water)  paper towel, wipe the rims of each jar. Don't touch the rims with your finger tips after wiping
- Use clean magnetic lid lifter and lift a lid from the simmering pot and place on jar, repeat until all lids are on
-Place rings on jars ONLY FINGER TIGHT** and making sure not to disturb/move the lids

**Meaning that you use your fingers to tighten the rings then undo a quarter of an inch. If you put the lids on TIGHT they could break or not seal properly.

Step 8: Processing the Jars

- Using your Clean Jar lifter, slowly add jars one at a time to the canner until they are all in there.Leave space in between all of them.
- Place lid back on water canner and process your jars for 10 minutes**
(Remember your heat needs to remain on Medium/High during this entire processing time)
- After time is up for processing, turn off heat and allow jars to sit for 5 minutes before removing them

** Depending on your elevation, more time might be needed. Please refer to the chart below to see if you need to add time. For example I live about 3,500 above so I add about 7-10 minutes to my processing time. So for this recipe, processing time was 17-20 minutes and then... 5 minutes of sitting.

Step 9: Allowing Jars to Cool & Checking the Seals

- Using your Jar lifter, slowly remove jars one at atime and place on a clean towel in an out of the way area as they will need to sit undisturbed overnight or  for atleast 12 hrs.

- During removal you might hear some of the jars make a ping or popping noise. This is normal and a good sign. If you don't, have no fear, not all the jars will make that noise and it doesn't mean you did it incorrectly.

As tempting as it is, DO NOT touch your jars. Leave them undisturbed atleast overnight.

- after 12 hrs or overnight, remove rings and check your lids to make sure they are sealed properly.
I usually lift the jar by the lid a few inches from the towel. If the jars are properly sealed they will all hold.
- Use a damp paper towel or clean hand towel and clean the sides and tops of the jars( this will remove that powdery white stuff that is left when your water has lots of minerals in it)

- If your lid falls off or starts to come loose at any time, they ARE NOT properly sealed. These should be refrigerated and used up right away.
- Properly sealed jars should be labeled  stored in a cool sun light free area. Such as a cupboard in an air-conditioned area. Jars do not need to have the rings placed back on for storing.