Black Currant with Thyme

This small batch jam balances spicy thyme with tart currants and the acidity of white wine. Serve along side cheese or as a relish for pork, chicken or eggs. The set of this jam is very firm, so, when cold, could be sliced or scooped. For a softer jam decrease cooking time. Have ready 6 x 125 ml, or 3 x 250 ml jars.

ACTIVE TIME: 30 min TOTAL TIME: 40 min

Servings

Makes about 2 1/2 cups, (750 ml)

Ingredients

  • 4 cups (1 L) destemed black currants, or a combination of black and red currants
  • 1 cup (250 ml) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) white wine, preferably dry or off-dry
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) white wine vinegar
  • handful of fresh thyme sprigs

Instructions

  1. In a 10-12″ (30cm) skillet or dutch oven, mash the currants with the sugar. Set aside, covered, for at least 30 min, and up to overnight.
  2. Add the white wine and white wine vinegar. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat just enough to maintain a boil, and cook, uncovered, until mixture will form a gel, about 8 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat.
  3. Select a large pot which is at least 4 (10cm) taller than your jars. Set a cooling rack, tea towel or canning rack into the bottom, add water to half full, filling the jars with water. Bring to simmering. Set screw bands aside; heat lids in hot water, NOT boiling (180F/82C). Keep jars and lids hot until ready to fill. If your lids are newer (post 2014 purchase) pre-heating is not required.
  4. Remove the jars from the pot of water, setting onto a towel on the counter. Ladle hot jam into the hot jars to within 1/2 inch (1 cm) of top rim (headspace). Using nonmetallic utensil, remove air bubbles. Wipe jar rim removing any stickiness. Centre lid on jar; apply screw band securely & firmly until resistance is met fingertip tight. Do not overtighten. Place jars back into the pot of water. If the last jar is less than 3/4 full, do not process, but store in fridge for immediate use.
  5. Cover the pot; bring water to a boil. Boil filled jars 10 minutes. When processing time is complete, turn heat off and remove canner lid. When boil subsides – bubbles no longer rise to surface (3 to 5 minutes) – remove jars without tilting. Cool jars upright, undisturbed 24 hours. DO NOT RETIGHTEN screw bands.
  6. After cooling, check jar seals. Sealed lids curve downward and do not move when pressed. Remove screw bands; wipe and dry bands and jars. Store screw bands separately or replace loosely on jars, as desired. Label and store jars in a cool, dark place.

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