*I apologize in advance, but none of my photos would upload. I intended to add them, however they did not cooperate.* 

Good Evening wonderful people of the interweb! 

I cannot believe that summer is almost over... It is rather depressing to think there are four weeks left of this wonderful season. However, fall is my favorite time of year so I'm not *that* depressed. 

Anyways, I hope you're ready to make your taste buds dance! We are about to make some stone fruit jam! 

Summer is such a wonderful time of year because you can find such delectable and fresh produce everywhere. Farmers markets, roadside stands, and even your own back yard. In my case, it was a mixture of fruit from my own back yard and fruit from a coworker's back yard. 

Jam always seems like such a daunting task. There are always so many steps and ingredients that you have to use in order to get the right flavors or consistencies. I remember one time I attempted to make strawberry jam and it turned out to be a disaster. Then, I stored it in a pickle jar I had washed and it ended up tasting like strawberries and pickles. I was inexperienced back then. I am here to tell you that making jam does not have to be a difficult or daunting task! 

This simple recipe calls for three very simple and common ingredients! 

 

So, let's hop in the kitchen and get started! 

First of all, as always you are going to need to put on an apron! The juices of these fruits can stain and the jam is sticky. You're going to want to protect your clothing! 

Before we move on, I must give you the proper tools you will need in order to identify what stone fruit is. Stone fruit is any fruit that has flesh or pulp that is enclosing a stone. Basically, if it has a pit in it... it is a stone fruit. So, you can use plums, peaches, nectarines, cherries, or even mangoes! 

Alright, next you're going to want to gather up your ingredients! 

For this recipe you are going to need:

- 10 cups of any stone fruit of your choice (if you choose to use two different ones, kudos to you! You're a brave soul!) 
- 1 lemon 
-5 cups of sugar 

This is all you need! 

Now, some of you are probably arguing with me right now saying, "Hey lady! You need to use pectin!" Nope! I want you to forget all about that! Our stone fruit has enough natural pectin to provide us with what we need! I think that is pretty awesome because I have no idea where I would even buy pectin! 

Now that you have all your ingredients gathered up, now would be the time to grab all of your utensils. 

You will need: 

-1 Deep Pot
-1 Cutting Board
-1 Potato Masher
-1 Flat Blade Silicone Spatula 
-1 Chefs Knife 
-1 Candy Thermometer 
-2 Saucers
-1 Measuring Cup 

Now that you've gathered all of your ingredients, it is time to get to cooking! 

First, you are going to need to put your two saucers in the freezer. Trust me, it will all make sense later! 

Secondly, you are going to need to cut up all ten cups of your stone fruit. Discard the pits and put your fresh produce into your deep pot. 


Next, juice your lemon! It is important that you put your lemon peel to the side. This will be used later. For juicing, you can use one of those fancy juicers that people use to make lemonade or orange juice or you can do what I do and squeeze with your hands! Make sure if you do this though, you use something that can catch the seeds. We do not want stray lemon seeds wreaking havoc in our jam! Once you have all your juice, add that to the pot as well!

I told you that your lemon peel would be important later on! Zest that lemon! Your kitchen is going to start smelling amazing! Fresh lemon zest is one of my favorite scents. Once you're done zesting your lemon, add the zest into the pot. 

Lastly, you are going to add all five cups of sugar to your jam. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT add any less or any more! 

Once all of your ingredients are in your pot, you're going to turn your stove up to about medium. I'd mix everything together to get your fruit coated in lemon juice and sugar. 

After everything starts to boil, you're going to want to turn up the heat to medium-high. Make sure you are stirring it every once and a while!

When your jam has been boiling for about ten minutes, you're going to want to take your potato masher and mash up what is left of your fruit. You'll start to notice that it is getting a little thicker and this means you're on the right track! 

Basically all that is left to do is boil the daylights out of your jam. It is very important that you are constantly stirring it! Also, do not turn your burner above medium-high! 

When your jam is done, you'll notice that it is thicker in texture around the edges. Use your candy thermometer to temp it. If it is at an approximate temperature of 215 degrees it should be done! For the final test, you will need your saucers. I use two just in case the first time I do this test reveals that it needs to cook longer. You are going to need to put some of your jam onto the saucer. Run your finger through the middle and tip the plate sideways. If your jam does not run back together, it is done! 

It will still not be the exact consistency you want it to be, but that is because you need to let it set up once you have put it into your jars! 

I used glass mason jars, but you can use plastic if you want to make freezer jam. You can even can it if you'd like. However, if you don't it should still keep for a good while in the refrigerator.  

I let mine set overnight, but it should set fairly quickly. You can leave it out or put it in the fridge so it chills! 

And there you have it folks! Delicious and easy stone fruit jam!  It's good on toast, biscuits, and pb&j sandwiches. 

I hope you enjoyed this recipe! Let me know if you recreated this wonderful jam and what you thought! I used plums in mine and I'd love to know how other fruits turned out.


*Warning: Jam will be sweet! Use sparingly!