I don’t typically crave jam. But in the summer, with delicious ripe fruit and berries, it’s more appealing. Right before traveling to Europe, our entire apricot tree ripened at once. Totally serious, the whole tree! I made some coconut-apricot bars using my raspberry-coconut oatmeal bar recipe if you check out my Instagram feed you will see those beauties, but the rest I made into apricot quick jam.
Quick jam is a fresh jam that does not go through the sterilization/preserving process. The way I see it, it’s the CliffNotes of the jam world. My grandmother spent all summer sterilizing and making jam that could last all year. I know myself too well: I am far too impatient, opting for an easier apricot quick jam instead.
I have always thought the jam world was a bit confusing. There is jam, quick jam, jelly and marmalade, but honestly, what’s the difference? Here’s the breakdown:
Jam: Always made from whole or cut fruit, slowly cooked with sugar into a pulp-like mixture until it has a thick, spreadable consistency. Jam, when cooked properly, can be placed in sterilized jars and properly preserved for months.
Quick Jam: Whole or cut fruit cooked with sugar just like regular jam, but it is does not go through the sterilization and canning process and thus only keeps, refrigerated, for 2-3 weeks.
Jelly: Made using only fruit juice and sugar. This is a more complicated method as the fruit must be cooked first, then strained through cheese cloth to collect the clear liquid. This can take some time; if you try to rush it, the result can appear cloudy.
Marmalade: Similar to jam but only made from bitter Seville oranges from Portugal.
Apricot quick jam (or any other type of quick jam) is a great way to make fresh, delicious jam anytime without too much effort. If you are a jam fan who has never tried making the quick version, I encourage you try, it could not be easier. I swirled some apricot quick-jam in a bowl of overnight oats one morning and it was out-of-this world delicious.
Quick Apricot Jam
- 2 pounds fresh apricots (about 18 medium), cut in half, pitted
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed orange juice
- pinch of salt
- pinch of cinnamon
- Step 1 In a large saucepan add the halved apricots, sugar, lemon juice, orange juice, salt and cinnamon. Mix well to coat.
- Step 2 Place over a medium high heat and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat and cook, stirring often until the fruit begins to break down and thicken, about 15-20 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.
- Step 3 Transfer the jam to a heat-proof glass jam jar or equivalent and allow to cool completely. Store in the refrigerator. The jam will keep for about three weeks.