I mentioned before that I am a bit of a cookbook addict. You know, I have come to realize I am a bit of a blogging addict as well. Not just my own blog, but others too! I often derive ideas for my gluten free and dairy free recipes from other non-gluten free or dairy free resources. I am an expert recipe tweaker and ultimately hope to make your life easier by taking all of the guess work out of creating gluten free and diary free recipes for you.
A few months ago I came across a spunky blogger on Foodbuzz.com who quickly caught my attention. She may not be gluten free or dairy free by nature, but her recipes are amazing and certainly give me room for thought. Known as Dixie Chik Cooks, I was recently drawn in by a challenge this spunky young lady offered her readers. An idea she has titled “Ingredient Challenge Monday,” I was inspired to dig a bit deeper into her website. After noticing an amazing recipe for Pomegranate Pico de Gallo, I felt the desire to feed into my craving for sweet and spicy and play with my own recipe for Pomegranate Jam to see what I could come up with! I wanted to share this recipe yesterday, but as mentioned in my Magic Soup Post, I just wasn’t myself then.
This recipe works well with or without the jalapeño (although I believe the jalapeño makes it even better than before!). Sweetened only with fruit juice, it is important that you select the appropriate type of pectin for this jam to set well. I use Ball ® No sugar needed Fruit Pectin, which seems to set at a lower temperature and results in more of a fruit preserve than a jam (which is just fine with me!).
Fruit Sweetened Jalapeño Pomegranate Jam
4c Pomegranate arils (1 large pomegranate will yield approximately 1 c arils/fruit)
2 Jalapeños, seeded and chopped
1 c unsweetened juice (100% Pomegranate Juice or Grape Juice are my favorites for canning. To cut down cost, I used ½ Pomegranate and ½ Grape Juice for this recipe).
4 Tbs No Sugar Needed Fruit Pectin (or 1-1.75 oz packet)
Prepare canning jars as directed.
In large sauce pan, combine pomegranate, jalapeños and juice. Over medium-high heat, slowly mix in fruit pectin. Increase to full heat and cook, stirring constantly, until mixture reaches full rolling boil which cannot be stirred down. Remove from heat and ladle jam into prepared jars, leaving ¼” head space in each.
Top jars with prepared lids and seals, following directions for processing in boiling water.
Once jars have completed their processing stage (you will hear them “pop” in the water), remove and allow to cool undisturbed for 12 hours. Check each seal by pressing the center of each lid. If lid does not flex up and down, it is sealed. If a lid is not sealed within 24 hours, refrigerate for upto 3 weeks or reprocess for the full length of time using a new lid.
*Note, no fancy equipment is required for canning by boiling water, just a pot large enough to hold the jars upright, and covered by 1-2 inches of boiling water. I do, however, recommend investing in a Ball Utensil Set, as it includes everything required (save the jars themselves) for canning safely.
If you have never canned before, here is an easy tutorial to help you prepare.
This recipe yielded just three half pint jelly jars, though I found it easy to do two batches at once (one with jalapeños and one without). All in all, it took less than an hour to make 6 wonderful gifts.
My mother-in-law has a beautiful pomegranate tree in her yard, so my supply of this luscious fruit comes for free, though I priced pomegranates in the store and found that, even with a double batch, this entire project would cost less than $20 total. 6 gifts, less than 1 hour for less than $20? Go for it!