Thursday, November 6, 2014

Guava Jam

It took me a little longer to get to 10,000 words than last year.  I actually made this on the first, but haven't had the time to post it.

My neighbor received a boatload of guavas from another neighbor and passed on several pounds to me when I mentioned that I sometimes can stuff.  I don't think I've ever had a guava, only guava juice.  Off to Wikipedia we go, and it looks like guavas are great for canning because they have a lot of built-in pectin and are usually sweet enough to go easy on the sugar.  All I needed was a proper recipe and a few free hours for canning once the fruits were fully ripe.

I put the guavas in several paper bags to ripen more quickly, along with a green tomato to make sure the process was working.  Fruits give off a gas as they ripen, which then helps to ripen other fruits stored with them.  There was a chance these were the green variety of guavas and I would not know if they were ripening, but I had accidentally knocked a green Bradley off the bush and figured it would be a great control subject.  Sure enough, it was much more pink the next day.  I moved it to another bag to help those along.

These guavas were the green kind, with white flesh.  I kind of let some of them go a little too long and had to throw out a few, but there were still 4 pounds of fruit once I had trimmed off the stem and blossom ends.  They almost filled my second-largest pot to the brim.  Since my 2-gallon stock pot is also my canning pot, it's a good thing they fit.
I finally broke down and bought a food mill.  I have been able to avoid it and use either a sieve or the food processor because I cook in small batches.  Pressing this much guava through a sieve would have taken all day.  I can use it on all sorts of things that I make anyway, like not-refried beans.  Just one more toy.

This is the one-pound version, for those who don't own a tree.

*1 lb ripe guavas
1/2 C water
*2 tsp lime or lemon juice
1/2 C sugar

1.  Cut off stem and blossom ends of guavas.  If using a blender, peel.  For a food mill or sieve, that is not necessary.  Quarter and scoop out seeds if using a blender.  Food mill or sieve, put in pot whole.

2.  Add water and cook fruit over medium until completely softened, about 30 minutes.  Allow to cool slightly.

3.  Either purée fruit in a blender if peeled and seeded, or run through a sieve or food mill to remove seeds and skin.  Return fruit to pot, add juice and sugar, and bring to a boil.

4.  Boil jam until thickened, about 15 minutes.  Either cool and store up to a week in the fridge, or process in a water bath 15 minutes to can.

Makes just under 1 cup

Difficulty rating :-0

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