Rhubarb is one of those amazing foods that is very underrated. It’s a vegetable but once cooked, has the sweet flavour of a berry. A few weeks ago, I came across a recipe for rhubarb-vanilla bean shortbread bars, on a lovely blog called daisy’s world. If you’re like me and love food, you should check out this blog – just make sure you cover your keyboard, otherwise you’ll salivate all over it. Anyway, after reading this recipe, I decided that I wanted to make something with rhubarb. I’ve made an apple and rhubarb crumble before, but I love the flavour of rhubarb on its own, so I decided that I would try and make rhubarb jam, to accompany some freshly baked scones. As it was raining yesterday and was the perfect day to spend in the kitchen, I finally got around to making some jam.
After scouring the internet for a good recipe, I found one and tried it. It didn’t work out, so I changed the method a little and it worked perfectly. So here’s the recipe for the jam – it’s only for a small batch, which is perfect for my house as it won’t go to waste – it was enough to fill a 400ml jar. But just a tip with the rhubarb – remember that only the stalk can be eaten, the leaves are poisonous. So make sure you don’t accidentally get some leaves in your jam mixture.
Rhubarb Jam – makes about 2½ cups
- 500g rhubarb, trimmed and chopped into 1cm pieces (you’ll probably need about a bunch and a half)
- 500g caster sugar
- 1tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- Start by putting the rhubarb pieces into a medium sized, microwave safe bowl and microwave on high for about 3-4 minutes, stirring every minute or so to heat through evenly. Doing this softens the rhubarb and gets some of the juice coming out of it.
- After that, put the rhubarb into a large saucepan along with all the other ingredients over medium high heat. Bring to the boil and cook, for about 25-30 minutes, stirring regularly (make sure you don’t use a plastic spoon as it might melt). Skim off any froth that develops with a metal spoon.
- At around the 25 minute mark, put a small amount of jam on the pre-chilled plate, then put in the freezer for a couple of minutes, or until cooled to room temperature. Take it out and push it gently with your finger. If the surface wrinkles it is ready if not, keep cooking for a few more minutes, then test again.
- Once it’s ready, spoon it into the hot jars straight out of the oven – try and use a funnel when you do this, it’ll make a lot less mess! Then, put some squares of baking paper over the top (this will help prevent mould developing), screw the lids on and tip the jars upside down for 2 minutes. Then turn right way up and sit aside to cool.