I’ll be honest, jam has never excited me. It was never the spread of choice on my toast or in my croissants. In the true Italian fashion, I preferred Nutella as a child. Then with age and the exposure of American culture my Nutella was replaced by peanut butter, and it makes me feel better about eating it by the spoonful. So, not a big fan of jam, but I do however love making jam. I love hovering over the pot of simmering stew, having the steam rise up to your face, the room sweetened with the scent of fruit and sugar – it’s the equivalent of going to the spa for me.
Also, speaking of jam, remember this scene from Friends?
I love Friends. I practically learned English from Friends. I practically got my sense of humor from Friends as well.
Anyway, this jam is great as it’s a bit more special with the touch of vanilla. I love spiced up jams, those are the only jams that will make me stop by a farmer’s market stall and sample. So raspberry and vanilla is lovely. I’ve also made orange marmalade and rosemary, or thyme and sage probably work well too. If you don’t like eating jam either then just make it for the sake of making it, some meditation, and then gift it to some friends.
Makes two 400g jars
1 vanilla pod
Put the sugar and raspberries in a pot. Cut the vanilla pod in half, scrape out the seeds and put it in the pot along with the pod.
Put it on medium-high heat and stir. Bring to the boil and cook for about 10 minutes.
It’s ready when it reaches 105C, or place a teaspoonful of the jam onto a plate and put it in the fridge to let cool. After five minutes, take it out and push it with your finger: if a crinkly skin has formed on the jam, then it has set. It if hasn’t continue to boil for another 5 minutes, then do another test.