Sunday, August 19, 2012

Sugar-free Blues

These blueberries could get by without any sugar, I thought to myself as I dumped two cups of the stuff into my jam pot.

And as I stirred, I thought about the people I know who love blueberries but don’t love—or can’t tolerate—sugar. What about them? Don’t they deserve jam too?

And why didn’t I buy more blueberries at the farmer’s market that Saturday morning? They were so sweet and delicious! Was I nuts? I suddenly understood that by leaving pints and pints of them behind in the market, I had done the wrong thing

So on Sunday morning, when I went to a different market and saw the same farmer with his blueberries, I bought another pint. “They’re so good,” I said. “What did you do, go out and sing to them every single day?”

“ Well,” he replied as he handed me my purchase, “somebody did something right.”

Sugar-free Blueberry Jam with Balsamico
2½ c blueberries (a heaping pint)
⅓ c water
3 T balsamic vinegar
4 t powdered pectin (find here or here)

Pick through the blueberries to remove any stems or junk. Wash them, drain, and put in a pot. Smush them up a little with a potato masher or two wooden spoons. Add the water and balsamic, then sprinkle the pectin over the berries.

Cook them over high heat, stirring constantly, until they boil hard. Boil a minute or two, then pour into two sterilized half-pint jars and seal with two-piece caps in a boiling water bath. Ten minutes ought to do it.

Easy, fun, and oh so right!