My recipe for Easy Plum Jam is really very simple and, as plums are high in pectin so the jam will set easily. Let me take you through this easy step by step recipe so you can enjoy this sweet treat.
My Grandmother’s Plum Jam
Plum Jam always reminds me of my maternal grandmother. My gran was a great jam maker, every year she made raspberry, strawberry, and blackcurrant.
However, it is my Gran’s Plum Jam I remember best of all because she didn’t bother taking out the stones. And you had to pick them out of the jam as you ate and put them on the side of your plate!
You’ll be pleased to know that I took the stones out of my jam recipe because I would hate someone to crunch down on one and break their teeth!
What kind of plums are best for jam-making?
Plums are part of a group of stone fruits that includes greengages, mirabelles, damsons and cherry plums All of these fruits make good jam.
You can use dessert plums to make Easy Plum Jam. The plums you buy in markets and supermarkets are usually dessert plums. They may simply be labelled as British Plums or Yellow Plums or you may get a variety such as Victoria.
You may be able to get cooking plums from a greengrocer or from a friend’s garden if you don’t have your own plum tree.
How to make Easy Plum Jam
You will need plums, sugar, water and lemon juice. That’s all, it really is that simple to make this delicious jam.
Prepare the plums
Halve the plums and remove the stones, put them into a large pan, I use the base of my pressure cooker.
Soften the plums and add the sugar
The plums will soften quite quickly in the water and lemon juice then you can add the sugar. Make sure that the sugar is fully dissolved before bringing it to the boil.
What is a rolling boil?
I learned about jam-making from my Mum and my grandmother by watching them. I think it is much easier to understand when you can see what you are aiming for.
So here is a little help with the main techniques for jam making. The video above will show you what a ”rolling boil’ looks like.
HOW DO I TEST IF MY JAM WILL SET?
THE WRINKLE TEST
When you have boiled the jam for 20 minutes you can check if it will set (firm up) once cooled. To test for setting point you can use a jam thermometer, you can use the ‘flake’ test, but I have always used the wrinkle test.
Place some saucers in the fridge before you start making the jam. After your jam has been at a rolling boil for the necessary time, take the pan off the heat.
Put a teaspoon of the jam onto one of the cold saucers. Place the saucer back in the fridge and leave for 5 minutes. Then remove the saucer and push your finger across the jam. If it wrinkles, you can skim off the froth and pot up your jam in sterilised jars.
HOW DO I STERILISE MY JAM JARS?
I sterilise my jam jars and metal lids by thoroughly washing and rinsing them. I then put them, still wet, upside down onto a baking tray and place it in the oven at 150C just before I start to make the jam.
The water creates steam which helps to sterilise the jars. I take them out of the oven and fill them with the hot jam, then put on the lids. There are other methods but this is how I sterilise my jars.
DO I NEED TO WATER-BATH THE JAM?
No. I have never water-bathed jam and my jams, jellies, and marmalade stay in good condition for at least a year kept in a cool dry cupboard. In other countries, this is common practice and often used for lower sugar recipes.
I always think there is something rather magical about the way fruit and sugar transform into jam. Plum Jam has the most glorious colour
The colour may vary depending on the type of plums that you use, but somehow it always looks like glowing jewels, or am I being fanciful?
More Jam Recipes from Farmersgirl Kitchen
If you like plum jam but want to reduce the sugar you eat, then try my recipe for Low Sugar Plum Jam (Small Batch). It’s a fresh and fruity spread that uses 2/3 less sugar than traditional jam.
Blackcurrant Jam is one of the easiest jams you can make. Blackcurrants are naturally high in pectin which is the agent required to make the jam set. You don’t need to add any additional pectin or lemon juice in this recipe, just blackcurrants, water, and sugar.
Greengage and Apple Jam is simple to make and a delight to eat. Serve the jam spread on bread, toast or scones. Use it to fill a cake or include it in a yogurt dessert, there are so many ways to eat this jam.
Gooseberry Jam is a rather magical jam. You start with green or slightly pink berries, sugar and water, and the result if a glowing amber-pink and totally delicious spread.
Rhubarb and Ginger Jam is one of the first jams I ever made. It’s absolutely delicious and the perfect way to preserve a glut of rhubarb in the spring and early summer. Rhubarb and Ginger Jam is really easy to make and the preserved ginger adds a fabulous kick.
More Plum Recipes for you to try
Plum and Almond Traybake – Farmersgirl Kitchen
Easy Roasted Plums with Star Anise – Supper in the Suburbs
Cinnamon Spice Pancakes with Cinnamon Poached Plums – Farmersgirl Kitchen
Plum Jelly – Kavey Eats
Duck and Plum Salad – Farmersgirl Kitchen
Mini Damson Madeira Loaves – Baking Queen 74
Plum Almond and Apple Tarte Tatin – Foodie Quine
Grilled Plums with Minted Couscous and Almonds – Thinly Spread
Plum and Almond Crumble Cake – Family, Friends, Food
Hungarian Plum Cake – Elizabeth’s Kitchen Diary
Glyn Purnell’s Duck with Spiced Plum Jam – Gingey Bites
Apple Plum Galette – Little Sunny Kitchen
How to make Easy Plum Jam
- 900 g dessert plums (weight without stones)
- 4 tbsp water
- 900 g sugar
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 knob butter approx 1 tsp
- Halve the fruit and remove the stones.
- Wash your jars and place in a low oven (see notes).
- Put into a large pan with the water and cook gently until the plums are soft but not disintegrated.
- Add the sugar and lemon juice and stir until the sugar has dissolved.
- Bring to the boil, and boil rapidly, (rolling boil) then remove from the heat after 5 minutes and test for set (see notes).
- When setting point has been reached, skim off the most of the froth (scum) into a bowl (you can still eat this, it’s not dirty just frothy) then add the knob of butter which will disperse the remaining scum.
- Let it cool for about 15 minutes so the fruit settles and doesn't sink to the bottom of the jars.
- Ladle into sterilised jars and leave to cool before sealing.