infusing tea into jam

Hi everyone--I would like to infuse the flavor of black tea into a sweet jam I'm making later...any thoughts on the best method? My idea is to use a spice bag filled with tea leaves in the jam while it simmers, but it's not a very long-cooking one. How much tea per cup of fruit would be reasonable? Has anyone tried this?



Catherine B. June 20, 2013
The best way is to brew the tea in hot water as you normally would, but use three or four times the normal amount to make a "super infusion" and then add this liquid to the fruit and sugar. The additional liquid will slightly extend the cooking time, but this is the very best way to include the tea's flavour, without adding bitterness.
Mirepoix79 May 25, 2012
Be careful tea has time and tempting. If you want a strong tea flavor use more tea. If you brew it to long and to hot it will be bitter. Black tea is best at about 195 degree for 3 minutes. But it really depends on what kind of tea you use.
HalfPint May 24, 2012
I wonder if you could grind up the tea leaves and just add it to the jam, like an herb or spice.
Raquelita May 24, 2012
I wish I were closer to the macerating fruit so I could add in the tea leaves now! I will try the maceration-step steeping and just wait a little longer to start cooking the jam tonight. Thanks!

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PhillipBrandon May 24, 2012
Are you using a precess that macerates for a while first? I would include the tea as early as you can, or at least as early as you have any liquid. Once you get the jam up to a good brewing temp for black tea, the sugar/pectin starts setting up, and the tea is going to have a much harder time diffusing.

As for how much tea per fruit, that's a hard call. I've seen two tea bags used from everything from 1 to 4 pounds of fruit. I think that temperature and fluidity will be more important for getting the tea flavor than the amount of tea used.

Here's a thought (that might be too strange), have you considered including a small amount of loose tea in the jam? It would give it a little bit of a marmalade texture, and would certainly punch up the tea flavor. The leaves would essentially be candied in the fruit, so I don't think they would be too bitter.
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