So. By now, we all know that Leena hearts canning and is participating in a can jam with bloggers around the world, right? AWESOME. Of course we also remember all the deliciousness Leena has already canned for the can jam, like her citrus in January (blood orange port marmalade), carrots in February (gajar ki chutney with caramelized shallots), onions in March (onion apple ale relish) and herbs in April (strawberry rhubarb rosemary jam). This month’s challenge: asparagus OR rhubarb. Technically, I did both (I canned pickled spicy dill asparagus in a canning class I taught), but my official entry in May’s can jam is spiced rhubarb jam.
Food porn, directions, and an explanation on how I got bitch-slapped by some spices after the jump.
If you never had rhubarb, what you are looking at is essentially a stalk of celery on crack. It’s leaves are poisonous, it is thicker than celery and colored red and green, and if you taste it raw, it is extremely tart and sour. But if you add a bit of sugar to it, the tartness get tamed into a delicious mix that tastes great on it’s own or even better with strawberries or other fruits.
I happen to love using Chinese five spice when making sweet applications for fruits and vegetables. It goes great with apples, strawberries, cherries…pretty much everything I could try tasted delicious with it! So I thought it would make perfect sense to try it out in a bit of my rhubarb jam.
Guess who got a bit overzealous?
When I finally tasted the jam, I had five spice jam. I knew rhubarb was technically in there, but my crazy love for five spice totally overwhelmed the delicate tangy rhubarb flavor. Rhubarb jam FAIL.
I managed to salvage the jam with a ridiculous amount of lemon juice and zest. My final result was a subtly spiced, subtly tangy jam that wasn’t half bad for something that started out as a mistake. But? Lesson learned.
And you know what?
It tastes pretty damn good melted over some French toast with a healthy dose of vanilla yogurt and flaked almonds.
Recipe: Leena’s Spiced Rhubarb Jam
Summary: This recipe was inspired by a recipe from Small Batch Preserving by Ellie Topp and Margaret Howard
- 1 lemon
- 2 cups chopped fresh rhubarb
- 1 large tart apple, peeled, cored and chopped
- 1/2 water
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup honey
- 1/2 tsp fresh grated ginger
- 1/2 tsp Chinese five spice
- Zest the lemon using a microplane and place zest into saucepan. Squeeze juice from lemon and reserve 1 tbsp.
- Place apple, water and rhubarb into saucepan. Bring to boil over high heat, cover, reduce heat and simmer gently for 15 minutes or until fruit is tender.
- Place the lemon juice, ginger, honey and sugar into the pan. Return to boil and boil rapidly, uncovered, until mixture forms a gel, roughly 8 minutes. Stir frequently during this process. Remove from heat when finished.
- Ladle into hot jars and process for 10 minutes for pint jars and half pint jars.
- makes 3 1/4 cups
Microformatting by hRecipe.