For those of you who are afraid of apricots, let me tell you how easy it is to make jam!
I've made apricot jam with and without pectin and I like it better without! Apricots have natural pectin to thicken the jam to the right consistency, so put your pectin away until time to make plum or peach pit jelly and let's get started.
I saw a recipe on the internet that said to peel the apricots! WHAT??? NO WAY!
Just wash the apricots, pull them apart, take out the pit, cut out the top of the stem, get rid of the earwigs, and run a knife through them (the apricots, not the earwigs) until they're coarsely chopped.
Put the fruit in a large pan. For every cup of fruit, add 3/4 cup sugar and 1 1/2 tsp. lemon juice. The good thing about not using pectin; you can make this batch as big or as small as you want.
Incorporate (I kinda like that word) the sugar and lemon juice into the apricots.
If you want apricot pineapple jam you need to change it up just a little bit.
Drain a can of crushed pineapple in juice, not syrup, add to apricots. You decide the proportions, I did 1 1/2 cups crushed pinapple to 4 1/2 cups apricots. Decrease sugar to 2/3 cup to 1 cup of fruit. I added the pineapple juice instead of the lemon juice.
Make sure your jars are clean and your lids are ready to soak in boiling water.Turn on heat and bring jam to a simmer, stirring frequently. You don't want to scorch this! It's going to cook for 25 minutes, keep stirring! It's more fun if you have someone to talk to or music playing. If not, just pay attention to what you're doing. During this time, there will be some foam. Just keep stirring. You can add 1 tsp. of butter to the jam to cut down the foaming. After 25 minutes, skim off foam and it's ready to bottle.
Fill jar within 1/2 inch. Wipe off top of jar to remove any drippage, put on lid and screw down ring. There are two different ways to seal the jam. You choose what you like best. You can put them in a canner of boiling water and boil for 15 minutes. Remove and listen to the music of sealing jars. OR:
Be sure your jars are HOT, (I put my clean jars in the oven @ 175 degrees during the last 15 minutes of the jam's cooking time) pour the hot jam in the hot jars, put on the lids from the boiling water, screw on the ring and invert the jar for 5 to 10 minutes. Careful, did I mention they're HOT? Turn right side up and listen to the ping of the sealing lids as the jars cool.
So, who's afraid of apricots? I am!
I took this picture of a small section of the tree after picking 4 1/2 buckets today!
Calgon, take me away!