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So, after a bit of a disaster and a minor mishap, I achieved a modicum of success.

I tried making a plum jam and although on the day all seemed fine, by the following day, I couldn't even get it out of the jar *head desk*. Then I tried strawberry jam . . . didn't set enough, although it has made rather a sweet topping for desserts (spooned over a portion of fruit, ice cream and meringue worked well) or on french toast. Actual toast however becomes a gymnastic event as I try to keep it on the toast and not all over whatever I'm wearing *sigh*.

This got me thinking - one too hard, one too runny - there has to be a happy medium somewhere.

The answer came by combining the two recipes (more or less - I left out the lemon juice) and so the next effort was Strawberry and Plum Jam and it's edible (on toast even!), a little too sweet, although maybe that's a good thing as I use less of it at a time. I would appreciate any advice on whether I could reduce the sugar content and still get a decent jam.

Therefore, I shall share with you my recipe.


Ingredients (Although the ingredients are given in metric measures, I would think it would be just as easy to do 1lb in place of 1kg and get the same result as it would keep the proportions the same)

1 kg plums (after stoning)
1 kg strawberries
2 kg sugar

What to do

1. Wash and prepare fruit. Slice plums depending on size into chunks. If strawberries are large, it may be worth halving them.
2. Put plums into large pan on a gentle heat to soften. Depending on how ripe your fruit is it may be necessary to add a couple of tablespoons of water if it is very firm, but use as little as possible as the strawberries will also add juice.
3. Once plums are softening, add half of the strawberries.
4. Once all fruit in pan is softened well, add the final strawberries (I did it this way as the earlier strawberries went into the body of the jam whereas the later added ones retained a little more shape and color and provided a 'fruit' look to the finished product.
5. Stir in sugar over a low heat until it has all dissolved.
6. Turn up heat and boil rapidly until setting point is reached.
7. Remove any scum that is on the top of the jam once it is removed from the heat.
8. Bottle into warm sterilized jars. (Store in dark and refrigerate once open)

Simple *rolls on floor laughing* or it would be if I could figure out a foolproof way to reach 'setting point'. I tried using the 'wrinkle test' but didn't really have much success with it and so resorted to the temperature test but that too seems to be fallible (my thermometer rarely reaches the temperature it says in my recipe book before it's setting.)

Any helpful advice would be gratefully received to improve my jam making attempts - I am showing my beginner status, having only started trying to make anything just before Christmas last year and it's been an intermittent effort since then.
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