Fresh Red Plum Jam

Red plum jelly or red plum jam, either one works for me.  There's nothing like eating fruit jams from fresh picked fruits, especially if you picked the fruit yourself.  I confess that I didn't have to pick these plums.  My dear neighbors have plum trees in their backyard and brought me a couple of bags.  It's always a sweet thrill to receive such gifts.

Red plums have their own pectin, so when making jam, it's not necessary to add powdered pectin.  Save that box for making jellies.  All it takes to make this red plum jam recipe is a little patience.


To make 3 pints

  • 5 cups red plums, washed, seeded, coarsely chopped
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup water

Combine the plums, sugar and water in a large saucepot.  Bring slowly to a boil, stirring until sugar dissolves.  Cook rapidly to gelling point.  As mixture thickens, stir frequently to prevent sticking.  Remove from heat.  Ladle hot jam into hot jars.  Adjust two-piece caps.  Process 15 minutes in a boiling-water canner.


Testing the Gelling Point


Use a candy thermometer to measure the temperature (220ºF is the magic number).



When two drops become one, that's the happy moment called sheeting.  Stir the spread with a wooden spoon. Lift the spoon out of the bubbling liquid so it's parallel to the floor and tilt it to face you.  The spread will run off the spoon in a stream at first and then in individual drops.  When two drops lean into each other on the edge of the spoon and join into one big drop before dripping off the edge of the spoon, you have sheeting.