Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Cooking with Apricot-Pineapple Jam

Remember the Apricot-Pineapple Jam (click here) I made back in August last year? As the new growing season (which all too quickly will turn into preserving season) begins, now is the time I take stock and begin planning for next year. What worked and what didn't, what was too much or not enough, and what should be changed, eliminated or added this year. I begin deciding which kinds, and how much, jam I should (allow myself to) make, and I was thinking about how Apricot-Pineapple Jam is more than just a condiment for toast. I would like to share with you some of the ways I use it in cooking.

1) Besides slathering it on toasted homemade bread for my breakfast (click here), biscuits and scones, or with PB on pancakes, it is also delicious as a topping for rice and bread puddings (click here), and ice cream.

2) To serve on Irish Soda Bread (click here), mix in a mini-food processor: 1 c. jam, 1 minced shallot and 2 T. Jameson Irish Whiskey.

3) An Upside-Down Jam Cake like this (click here) made with Apricot-Pineapple Jam is scrumptious!

4) I make a glaze for broiling ribs and other meats by mixing 1/2 c. jam, 2-4 T. soy sauce, and 1-2 T. white wine or rice wine vinegar. I add 1 t. each grated ginger and minced garlic if I think of it, or not if I don't or am in a hurry, and then I baste the meats with the glaze during the last 5-10 minutes of cooking time. We had lamb ribs with this glaze a couple nights ago and (as if there could be any doubt about it) they were incredibly good!

5) To make basic muffins into extra-yummy jam muffins, I fill the paper-lined muffin cup 1/4 full of batter (a couple tablespoons), add 2 t. jam, and then fill it to 2/3 full with more muffin batter and bake as directed. Yum!

6) I haven't made this yet, but I am convinced that Apricot-Pineapple Jam with Chili Sauce will make a great sauce for meatballs like these Beef Meatballs with Grape Jelly and Chili Sauce I recently made (click here), or as a sauce for baked chicken wings or riblets.

7) I absolutely adore this Asian-style Apricot Salad Dressing, especially on shredded cabbage salad served over warm rice. I blend in a mini-food processor: 1/2 c. jam, 1/4 c. rice wine vinegar, 2 T. soy sauce, 2 pressed garlic cloves, 2 T. honey, 1/2 c. canola oil, 2 t. sesame oil, and then stir in 1 T. toasted sesame seeds.

I hope everyone is enjoying our lovely weather this week! I'm off to weed the strawberries now -and to think about strawberry jam and wee little lambs and all the joys of summer.

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