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Rhubarb Jam

Last weeks item on Scots love of jam brought an immediate response from a visitor to The Flag requesting a jam recipe! It also prompted the SI skeilie Webmaster to recall a boyhood visit to friends of his parents who had a croft in the Scottish Borders and made their own bread, butter and jam. The young Alastair kept going back to the kitchen for another jammy piece until his mother called a halt. She probably thought, reminisced Alastair, that her friends would think that she didn't feed him properly! But it was so good, just like nectar, claimed Alastair, and he still remembers with great pleasure the thick bread smeared liberally with butter and jam.
SI Chairman Peter Wright, who still uses his mother's rhubarb jam recipe, recalled how she won a rhubarb jam competition at the Crimond SWRI fifty years ago. "Fit kin o ginger did ye ess?" she was asked. "A dinna lyke rhubarb and ginger jam" was her reply. It turned out that the competition was for rhubarb and ginger jam, which just proves that rhubarb on its own tastes much better! In a future item, we will look at that great Scottish institution, The Scottish Women's Rural Institute, but meantime, here is Gladys Wright's prize winning recipe.
Rhubarb Jam
Ingredients : 4 lb rhubarb; 4 lb sugar; teaspoon lemon juice
Wash and chop rhubarb into one inch lengths and put into jelly pan. Cover with sugar. Cover pan with dish cloth and leave overnight. This draws out the juice from the rhubarb. Next day bring pan slowly to a rolling boil, stirring continuously with a wooden spoon. Boil for thirty minutes adding a teaspoon of lemon juice near the end, to aid setting. During the boiling time skim off the impurities coming to the surface in thick froth. After thirty minutes put a wooden spoonful of liquid in a saucer and allow to cool. Test for setting. A finger run gently across the surface causes wrinkling in the set jam. If necessary repeat. When ready pour into jam jars, to avoid breakages half fill jars, then top up. Early rhubarb, being juicier, is more difficult to set than the later crop, but if desired gelatin can be added. Like Alastair spread on a piece and enjoy! Makes 7/8 lbs.


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