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Pineapple jam is a jam made with pineapple, a tropical fruit that is known botanically as Ananas comosus. Native to Brazil and Paraguay, this fruit is widely cultivated in Asia, Africa, the Caribbean, South America, and parts of North America.
It is possible to use fresh pineapple or preserved pineapple to make the jam; both are readily available in most supermarkets. If a fresh pineapple is used, the fruit will need to be skinned, cored and sliced. Other ingredients include sugar, lemon juice, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and water. Some cooks may add a food coloring to get a bright yellow jam.
The pineapple pieces are put in a pan of water, and the pan is heated until half of the water has evaporated and the pineapple pieces have become tender. If a smooth jam is required, the pineapple pieces may be mashed or processed in a blender. The sugar is added to the pan then and stirred until it has dissolved. Lemon juice, nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves are added next and the mixture is cooked until the jam has thickened. This can take about 20 minutes, and it is necessary to keep stirring to keep the pineapple jam from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
Once the jam is done, the pan is taken off the heat and the jam is allowed to cool for a while. It is then poured into clean containers with airtight lids. The lemon juice in the pineapple jam will help preserve it, and the jam can last for a few weeks if the sealed containers are stored away from direct sunlight. An opened container should be kept in a refrigerator and preferably finished within a week.
The pineapple jam can be eaten as a spread on toast, and as a filling for bread, buns, biscuits, cakes, tarts and other pastries. It can be used to make ice creams, yogurts, milk shakes and cocktails. This is a tasty food with many health benefits.
Pineapples are low in calories, and contain the bromelain enzyme which assists in digesting proteins and also has anti-inflammatory properties. Pineapple is a good source of vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin C, copper, calcium, phosphorus, potassium, manganese and carbohydrates. Eating pineapples is good for the eyes, and can prove helpful for people with high blood pressure, arthritis and bronchitis. There is a chance that some people may get allergic dermatitis from touching or eating pineapples.
@burcinc, @feruze-- My mom makes this jam a lot. She also puts lemon juice in it (not lemon) and is heavy handed with the spices. She puts whole cloves, anise and cinnamon in it. She doesn't even fish them out later. She jars them with the spices in because the flavor becomes even better that way. We fish them out while eating, which is not a problem.
She doesn't use a food processor either. She uses a grater and grates it by hand. She tried using a food processor before but didn't like how the texture came out. It was too smooth I guess. We like our pineapple jam, slightly chunky. It seems to come out perfect when its grated by hand.
Sometimes she adds other fruits in the jam too. I love pear pineapple and peach pineapple jam. These are great combinations.
@burcinc-- Those are good tips. I think it's better to put lemon juice though. It would just be easier, you wouldn't have to fish the lemon out later. I've never tried this, but I think it would be interesting to replace lemon juice with lime juice in pineapple jam recipe too.
The tip I would like to add is using fresh pineapple. Preserved pineapple can have substitutes, food coloring and preservatives in them. It's just not necessary in my view. If I'm going all out and making jam at home, might as well make it from all fresh ingredients. And many grocery stores will skin and slice the pineapple for you if you want.
Homemade jams and jellies are the best. I never get the same flavor and satisfaction from store-bought ones. Pineapple jam is delicious and one of my favorites. I eat it on some toast with butter or in pastries.
I've made it a couple of times so far. The first time, I made a couple of mistakes and I want to share them here so that people don't repeat it.
First thing, the jam comes out a nicer consistency and texture when it cooks on low heat. So when it starts boiling, I turn the heat down. Otherwise, it cooks too quickly and the pineapple can be a bit hard.
The other thing which I made a mistake
about the first time is the lemon. Instead of lemon juice, I put half a lemon into the jam while cooking. But I made the mistake of leaving the skin on, which make the jam a little bitter. I still put lemon in my pineapple jam instead of lemon juice but I remove the skin first.
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