Before I announce the winner of my Five Year Anniversary Giveaway,
I want to share something with you that makes us all triumphant:
Start with the apricots!
Oops, wrong delicious peach-complected treat!!!
Yes, these will do!
Go for organic, since they are a thin-skinned fruit.
The apricots I used are from old-as-the-hill trees whose fruit is smaller and more tart than conventional apricots - if you get commercially grown 'cots, just reduce your sugar in the recipe a smidge, to taste.
Halve and pit two pounds of apricots and throw them in the pot with one and a half ( 1.5 ) cups of sugar.
Split half of a vanilla bean down the center and scrape out the seeds, throwing the empty pod in, too:
I use a whole bean, but I am a vanilla lover!!
Cook over medium heat until your sugar liquifies,
and then let your mixture sit out on the stove for at least four hours or overnight so the fruit softens:
I prefer the four-hour option so I can stir the fruit:
what is not submerged under the liquid tends to oxidize, and I like my fruit jam pretty!
When your fruit is soft, pull out the vanilla bean pod, making sure to get as many seeds out as you can into the jam.
Cook over medium heat for 20-25 minutes or until your fruit is glassy and broken into small bits that seem inseparable from the liquid they were once bathing in.
Ladle into sterile jars and process in a canning bath for 15 minutes,
or just simply jar them if you know you'll have them in the fridge for a month or less.
The result of this endeavor is a miraculous tangerine-colored jam with all of those beautiful tiny vanilla seeds.
The vanilla gives what would already be a sensational jam a warmth and depth that
just soothes the soul.
My favorite way to consume this sweet stuff, besides straight off the spoon?
Atop toasted homemade oat-wheat bread and cream cheese!
Put some up for the winter: you'll be glad come December's freeze.
And now the moment I've certainly been waiting for:
the winner of the beautiful blue bag is:
Please send me a convo
to let me know where to ship this piece!
Thank you to everyone who entered, to everyone who has supported my work these last five years: here's to so many more!!!