Something of a “grown-ups” jam, sloe jam is for those who like a bit more than just sweetness to their jam.
Hermann the German loves it; Mini-Kraut does not.
When to pick sloes? After the first frost, or before the first frost and then a night in the freezer before using? This year, with everything, including the sloes, ripening so much earlier and in such abundance, I opted for the latter…
Prep. Time: about 5 minutes – plus the picking beforehand of course
Cooking time: about 60 minutes plus overnight freezing if necessary
Makes about 4 x 400 g jars
Ripe sloes 1 kg
White wine (or apple juice if you prefer) 2 x 250 ml
Brown sugar 375 g
- Pick over your sloes, rinse and freeze overnight if necessary. Take them out of the freezer and allow to thaw before using.
- Place the sloes in a saucepan with the first 250 ml of white wine – should be enough to just about cover the sloes, top up with a little water if necessary.
- Cook over a medium heat until the sloes are mushy (about 15 minutes).
- Pass the mushy sloes and their cooking liquid through a sieve, leaving the stones behind (wash them thoroughly and they make brilliant baking beans for baking pastry cases blind …).
- Return the sieved mixture to the saucepan together with the sugar and the second 250 ml of white wine, place over a medium heat and stir until the sugar has dissolved.
- Leave to simmer away until setting point is reached, pour into sterilised jars and seal.