Traditional Persian jams are made with whole or cut fruits rather than crushed fruits; they usually have no additive to make them jelly like and as a result any kind of fruit jam preserves that fruit’s look to a large extent. It is hard to find this type of fruit jam in the market in Montreal, giving me one more incentive to make them at home from scratch.
For this particular jam, I used the four berries currently in season in Montreal: Strawberries, black berries, blue berries and raspberries. You could certainly go with your own choices. Also for this particular jam, I have deviated from traditional Persian jams by making it less sugary/sweet. I have used brown sugar instead of white sugar and only to a much less degree, and used maple syrup to get to the desirable thickness and sweetness. I am pretty happy with the result: Not as thick as a traditional Persian jam but much tastier! Give it a try to see for yourself!
Ingredients (for three standard jam bottles, 250 ml each)
- 10 cups of Strawberries, black berries, blue berries and raspberries (in equal proportions) washed and drained. Only strawberries need cutting; keep the rest whole.
- 1 cup brown sugar
- ½ cup maple syrup
Place the cut strawberries and blue berries in a not-too-deep copper or enamel pot. Sprinkle ¾ of sugar on top, close the lid, shake well and leave it in the fridge overnight. Place black berries and raspberries in a normal bowl with lid, sprinkle the remaining ¼ of sugar, shake well and leave it in the fridge. The reason we separate the berries is that the former berries are tenderer and require less cooking time.
Come morning, you will notice the sugar has been melted and mixed with extracted fruit juice. This is all juice you would need to cook the fruits in; no water is added.
Place the pot over medium heat with closed lid for 45 minutes. Remove the lid, add content of your bowl (raspberries, black berries plus their juice) to the pot and simmer for about an hour, or until most juice is evaporated.
Add maple syrup and continue to simmer for another 30 minutes, until all berries are mixed and you get a fairly thick jam.
To bottle, use standard (250 ml) jam bottles. Pour in the jam while it is still very hot. Secure the lid and turn upside down till it gets cold. This is to sterilize the lid’s inner part and the upper part of the bottle, thus helping jam to remain bacteria free and long lasting.
Place the bottles in the fridge once cooled. Enjoy mixed berries jam with your breakfast or even with an afternoon tea.
Here are two absolutely healthy simple yet delicious sides/salads to go with any Holiday dishes. Let’s get into them without further ado
From the sunset in the last day of autumn (Dec 20th) till sunrise in the first day of winter (Dec 21st) we have practically the longest night of the year in the northern hemisphere. And from then on, very gradually, days get longer until we hit the summer solstice six months later
Iranians mark “the longest and darkest night of the year” as Yalda, and have special rituals for it as they often do with other major celestial moments, namely Norooz, Persian New year on Spring Equinox and Mehregan, Persian Thanksgiving Festival around Fall Equinox
Loving Fall-color vegetables? Feeling cozy with the promise of snow in the air and the desire of a steaming potage to go with it? Well then, let us get started with some inspirations (and instructions) for some hearty, easy, spicy blended thick soups. Remember, you could absolutely use your intuitions and creativity with the types and amount of vegetables and seasoning. Here is my take though.
What do you do with your left over squashes after each Halloween? Leaving them out there for the squirrels to nibble at their leisure I guess, if they have been sitting there for too long!? Or perhaps, if the squashes are not too old, you would make a good use of them by turning them into puree, freezing them and using them in cakes, desserts and soups in the cold months ahead. Well, the latter is what I did this year.
Making squash puree is so easy I wonder why anyone should buy store cans! And of course, depending on the type of squash you use they make different tasting puree – from light yellow to dark orange in color. Below I will give a super easy way to make butternut puree – my favorite type of squash. Read the rest of this entry »
Here we are again with the King of all Seasons, Autumn; Autumn, a spring fallen in love, as Iranian poet ErfanPour describes it. پاییز بهاریست که عاشق شده ست. And here we are again, with the much loved and cherished Persian Fall Festival, Mehregan, the ancient Persian tradition to celebrate September Equinox, honor the god of justice, Mehr, and to be grateful for the harvest season and fall products.
What comes to your mind first, when you see or think of an apple? Eve? Newton? Steve Jobs? Or Fall and pie ?? Amazing how omnipresent apple is, isn’t it? And how diversified, beneficial and of course delicious this “forbidden” fruit of wisdom is.
Iranian culture and literature is full of apple-related references as well, and culinary wise, we cook with apple not only in the Fall but also in spring when a particular type of small sour apple is in abundance in some of Iranian southern cities such as Shiraz. Read the rest of this entry »