December 17, 2012

Pom-Pom Jam


Ingredients:
7 cups supremed pomelo segments (from about 4 pomelos)
4 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cup pomegranate arils (from 1 pomegranate)
1/2 box liquid pectin (3 oz., one of the little packets in the box)

Directions:
Prep jars/lids for canning. Add the pomelo segments and zest into a large, heavy bottomed pan. Add the sugar. Bring to a boil, stirring carefully to avoid splashing, break up the segments, occasionally. Boil until it begins to reduce and thicken. Stir in the pectin and pomegranate. Continue cooking at a low (rolling) boil for 5-10 minutes or until it looks thick and jammy. Fill the jars leaving 1/4 inch headroom. Process in the hot water bath for 10 minutes.
Yield: about 7 8-oz jars

Note: A great source for canning information is the Blue Book guide to preserving. I highly recommend it for learning how to can. Here is a bunch of other canning books and equipment I find useful.

My thoughts:
When I found myself in possession of a bunch of lovely pomelos and 14 cups (yes, you read that correctly, 14 cups) of pomegranate arils, I really wanted to make something using the two together. I had a hunch that pomelo's tart citrus would complement the sweet juiciness of the pomegranate. Pomelos are normally greenish yellow inside so I was surprised when I cut into them and they were bright pink! This only confirmed that I had to bring pomelo and pomegranate together.

Pomelo segments easily supreme and naturally break into smaller pieces which is perfect for jam making. They also have a ton of pith and a thin skin but since we are making jam and not marmalade, that isn't much of an issue; there is just a lot of flesh to cut off to get to the fruit. I prepped the pomelo the night before (the pomegranate had long been processed, the arils can keep for a month in the fridge) so the next day, I just had to pop in the pot. This made jam making a much less daunting task in the morning! From cooking to jars cooling, it only took about 40 minutes.

Most of the pomegranate arils held their shape and like they do in most dishes, they explode when you bite into them, which is slightly unexpected in jam, but very fun. The few that did burst, helped turn the the jam a lovely deep pink.

So, go check out your local store and pick up some pomelos (aka pummelo or pommelo, this huge fruit tastes like a sweet grapefruit and was one of the first citrus fruits)and pomegranates while they are in season.

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