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Author Notes: Shiro plums are such a lovely color of yellow and are one of the small plum varieties that I have seen at the farmers market in recent weeks. I had about a quart of them left and wanted to make some jam that highlighted their beauty and flavor but had a surprising, savory element too. Basil it was!
Just three ingredients, and decidedly small-batch(!), this is beautiful, unique, and so darn good, I'm just eating it with a spoon.
**I made this again yesterday using Formosa plums, another small variety. I imagine you can substitute any small plum; yellow flesh will yield the gorgeous orange color of the jam.
Makes 1¼ pints
- 4 cups chopped, pitted, unpeeled Shiro plums
- 2¼ cups unrefined, granulated sugar
- 1 sprig basil, 8" long, roughly 15-20 leaves
- If you want to preserve this, set up your waterbath canner and get the water boiling. Have your jars/bands/lids at the ready to sterilize: I used 2 half-pint jars and 1 quarter-pint. In a heavy-bottomed pot, put the chopped plums and sugar. Stir gently to combine and place the pot over medium-high heat. When all the sugar has melted, turn the heat to high, and add the basil sprig.
- Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. After 10 minutes, taste it. Do you like the degree of infused basil-flavor? If so, remove the basil. If not, keep the basil in for a bit longer. Using a candy thermometer, Thermapen or the like, start checking the temp: this jam will hover around 220 when it's ready. Ultimately, you'll probably cook this for about 20 minutes.
- This is optional but I did it because I like chunks of fruit in my jam: after 15 minutes, remove the fruit chunks that remain using a slotted spoon. Set them aside in a small, non-reactive bowl. Boil the syrup for a few minutes, and then add the fruit back in for 1-2 minutes, stirring gently.
- Carefully fill your jars, bubble them and wipe the rims. Apply the lids and bands and process in your waterbath for 12-15 minutes. Remove and let cool.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Fresh Herbs