Thursday, April 22, 2010

Spiced Blueberry-Amaretto Jam

I've seen that girl on in Willy-Wonka's factory get rolled away as a giant blueberry. What was her name? I'm not afraid...today. There was a time however, as a child, that I perhaps thought it was real and that the little orange men with funny shoes and goofy songs would turn me on my side for chewing too much gum and loving blueberries more than should be mortally allowed. However, as an adult, I have come to terms with that experience...and I rarely huddle in my closet and hug my teddy bear while sucking my thumb and chanting happy thoughts. Notice I didn't say "I never huddle in my closet..." I may as a mother sometimes hide from my kids. Is that okay to admit without being arrested? Back to the blueberries. At one time I've been know to eat several pints of fresh blueberries. They are evil little fruity nuggets. If you squeeze them between your fingers, I imagine it would be a demented way of pretending to squeeze Smurf heads. However, I won't be demented today. Haaa! Instead, I'll just make jam. Not just any old lame blueberry jam, but jam worthy of adoration and love. Umpa-Lumpa kind of jam. Yes. I know. I like the chocolate river best too...


Spiced Blueberry-Amaretto Jam
2 1/2 pints ripe blueberries
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1tsp high grade cinnamon (or Wise Woman of The East Spice Blend)
5 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup water
1 box (1 3/4 ounces) powdered pectin
1 tsp almond extract

Wash and thoroughly crush blueberries, one layer at a time, in a saucepan(or for smoother jam, puree in a food processor). Add lemon juice, spice and water. Stir in pectin and bring to a full, rolling boil over high heat, stirring frequently. Add the sugar and return to a full rolling boil. Boil hard for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in almond extract, quickly skim off foam and fill hot, sterile jars, leaving - 1/2 inch head space. Wipe jar rims. Adjust lids and process for 10 minutes in boiling water bath. In case you missed the long speech on this subject, check it out Home Canning Safety 101

Makes 5 half-pint jars (it is not a good idea to double batches-- just make several in a row)

There you go.

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