Christmas prep: jams and preserves

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It's always nice to have a little something on hand to give to guests and friends around Christmas time, so this year I'm making a couple of jams/preserves to give as gifts. 

Homemade cranberry sauce is a no brainer for Christmas. I love its tart sweetness against any sort of game meat at Christmas lunch.

And it's great for slathering on a ham sandwich with all those leftovers you'll have after the big day. 

Another good one is a yummy homemade jam. 

With all the delicious peaches in season, I've decided to make a decadent peach and honey jam. 

Here's how you can make these too...

 

Cranberry Sauce

This recipe is based off Nigella Lawson's recipe, but I've made a couple of adjustments.

Ingredients:

  • Packet of frozen cranberries
  • 200 grams caster sugar
  • 45ml brandy or bourbon
  • 75ml water

Method:

Sterilise your preserving jars - I do mine in the oven.

Put all the ingredients into a pan and let it bubble away until the berries start to break down, stirring every so often.

Crush up the berries a bit as you stir so you end up with a mixture with plenty of liquid but some nice whole berries too.

If the mixture is too sweet, squeeze in some lemon juice. 

Once you're happy with the flavour, it's ready to pour into the sterilised jars. The mixture will thicken as it cools. 

 

Peach & Honey Jam

This is a lovely jam recipe from Donna Hay

Ingredients:

  • 1.5kg yellow peaches, halved, stones removed and sliced
  • 3 1/2 cups caster sugar
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 4 strips lemon peel
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice

Method:

Place peaches, sugar, honey, lemon peel and lemon juice in a large pot and mix to combine. 

Bring to the boil over medium heat, stirring until the sugar is dissolved.

Reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally for 30–35 minutes or until the jam has thickened. Skim off the surface foam.

Carefully pour the hot jam into sterilised jars and seal.