Homemade Apple Jam


Winter is usually the time to make all these delicious things, peanut butter, jams, jellies, pies , carrot and pumpkin Halwas etc. It is that time of the year when the markets are full of colorful veggies especially the leafy greens and delicious apples, raspberries, guavas and strawberries.

Homemade apple jam with a dash of cinnamon or clove is something I love. It is easy to make and tastes somewhat like the apple pie filling. I keep changing the spices I add to it. Clove and  black peppercorn taste the best but you can go with a dash of apple pie spice mix or keep it plain and simple. I prefer the natural fruit pectin to do the trick so never add artificial pectin. As for sugar, if you choose sweet, juicy apples you will need very little sugar.

 

Ingredients :

Red Delicious Apples –  1/2 Kg.

Sugar – 1Cup

Lemon Juice – 4 Tablespoon (1 big size lemon is good)

Warm Water – Enough to submerge the apple

Cloves – 3

Black pepper corns – 4

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Method

1. Wash, peel, core and cut apples in small cubes.  (You can grate them too)

2. Take a heavy bottom pan and put chopped apple in it. Pour just enough water to submerge the apples.

3. Add cloves.

4.  Keep the pot on high flame to bring the water to boil and then lower the flame.

5. Keep stirring till apples soften.

6. Remove any foam that forms on top of the mixture.

6.  Add sugar once the apples becomes soft. Mash them to get a smooth texture. You can keep the chunks too. I sometimes prefer the chunky jam.

7.  Add lemon juice at this point

8. Keep the flame low and stir continuously so that the mixture does not stick to the bottom of the pan.

9.  Cook it till the mixture passes the “setting test” .

 The test to check if the jam is ready

Take a clean glass plate and put a spoonful of jam on it. If the mixture runs on tilting the plate , it is not done but if sticks to the plate and glides slowly then its ready to cool. After cooling it will thicken more. If it seems too thick then add a little water and continue to simmer till it passes the test, if it’s runny the simmer for some more time and then remove for cooling. 

10. Cool the mixture and slowly spoon it into sterilized jar. Do try this simple and delicious apple jam without all of the preservatives and additives you find in the store bought items.

Happy Eating !

Recipe : Homemade Peanut Butter


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Peanut Butter jelly sandwich has been my all time favorite. In fact I love peanut butter with anything. Spread on rotis, biscuits, cream crackers, in candies, smoothies, pies etc. One can also make delicious peanut butter cookies, fudge, satay, pudding,  peanut butter chicken and other sumptuous dishes with it  or simply lick it off like I do many times when no one is looking :p .

I learned and perfected the art of making good peanut butter and for sometime even took orders to sell it. One you make peanut butter at home you will never feel excited about store bought peanut butter.  I like it smooth and easy to spread but one can make it a little crunchy too. Here is an awesome website for PB lovers. Check  it out  [ LINK ]

Before I share the recipe let me tell you some facts.

**Did you know that peanuts are actually legumes, not nuts, and they originated from Brazil, and that even the Incas appreciated the delicious taste of peanut butter many centuries before us! 😀

**”Arachibutyrophobia” (pronounced I-RA-KID-BU-TI-RO-PHO-BI-A) is the fear of peanut butter getting stuck
to the roof of your mouth.

It is a very healthy lunch box meal power packed with protein and other nutrients. Home made Peanut butter has minimum salt and absolutely no preservatives so it is  better than the ones bought from stores and turns out to be cheap too. You can make it crunchy or smooth according to your taste.  I make it smooth.

The little bit of fiber found in peanut butter (1 g per tablespoon) combined with its protein content can give dieters a feeling of satiety, or fullness. If you feel full, you will eat less, so a serving of peanut butter may actually help keep your overall caloric intake down.

Now for the recipe

Ingredients:

Peanuts : 1/2 kg shelled

salt : 1/2 teaspoon
Sugar : 1 tablespoon
Peanut oil : 1 table-spoon
Method :
Roast the peanuts with their skin on slow fire in a heavy bottom pan till brown. Make sure they roast well but don’t get burnt even slightly or they will taste bitter.
Remove the skin by rubbing between palms.
In a blender put peanuts, salt, sugar and oil and blend till a smooth paste in made. Do not blend more than necessary or the mixture will  start leaving oil.
Raw Peanuts

Raw Peanuts

Exif_JPEG_420

Exif_JPEG_420

Delicous &  Nutritious

Delicous & Nutritious

If you want it crunchy then blend till it gets a crunchy ( with small bits of chopped peanuts) texture.
You can add or decrease salt and sugar according to taste.
 Adding little vegetable or peanut oil with ingredients prevents peanut oil from separating while blending. Once in the processor the peanuts will go through stages of: crushed, crushed into a fine powder, a paste, a thicker paste, a big “dough ball”, and then the ball will break down into runnier peanut butter. At the point the peanut butter is runny, continue processing for about 1 more minute, making sure the peanut butter is as smooth as desired. Keep stopping and stirring in between to avoid the machine from getting over heated. It will also help the salt and sugar to blend nicely.
Scrape it out and fill it in a glass jar. Make sure to keep the container tightly sealed after each use.
Keep it in the fridge for as long as you wish. Do not freeze. Usually it lasts for two to three weeks if stored wisely.
Enjoy the thick peanut butter spread any time of the day.