Wednesday, 23 July 2008

Homemade Banana Chocolate Jam

I never thought I would ever attempt to make my own jam. There is never a need since I could get ready-made ones easily and there has never been an occasion where I have abundance of fruits in my kitchen. I did tried to make some kaya jam sometime back, after seeing how other foodies have success in making their own. Mine didn't turn out as expected, in fact, it was a total flop. Ever since then, I have put off the idea of making any jam of any sorts. Furthermore, I always thought that making your own jam would be a very tedious task to accomplish, and when it comes to choosing the type of jam to make, I couldn't think further than the usual jams made with berries. My perceptions of homemade jam changed after I pick up this little cookbook.

Written by the owner of this Japanese confectionery, the author has included many fascinating jam recipes in her book. Besides apples, oranges and apricots, there are also recipes using fruits such as rhubarb, pumpkins, kiwi fruits, lychee and even bananas. The recipes do not require the use of any pectin sugar to help the jams to set. I guess it's the clever pairing of fruits that makes this possible. The book has convinced me that the steps involved in jam making are really not that difficult. I particularly like the small amount of ingredients required for each recipe, yielding small portions of finished jams, the amount is just right for our small family as I wouldn't want to make jars and jars of jams that would last me for years.


This first recipe I tried was this this jar of Banana & Chocolate jam. The ingredients are easily available and I really love the idea of having both my favourites from the same jar. The whole process didn't take me longer than half an hour as the cooking time was indeed very short. I followed the tips given by my friend VB to go about sterilising my recycled jam jars. It is pretty much similar to the steps outlined here.

The finished jam tasted yumilious! I've used dark chocolates with a 64% cocoa content, but I do find it just a tiny bit on the sweet side, especially whenever I slurped up one spoonful of it ;) I won't complain too much as I believe, or rather, I would want to make myself believe that most of the sweetness comes from the tiny bits of bananas. The jam works really well on slices of toast bread, I bet it would taste fabulous with crackers, as toppings for pancakes or crepes. I might even swirl some into muffins batters, but I really doubt I would have any left for that.


Ingredients:
(yields 380ml of jam)

300g bananas (about 3 large very riped ones)
80g dark chocolate (coarsely chopped)
20ml rum (optional)
100ml water (room temperature)
210g caster sugar*

Method:

  1. Thinly slice banana, about 1mm thickness.
  2. Place sliced bananas in a bowl, add water and caster sugar. Mix well. Transfer to a pot or a large saucepan.
  3. On medium heat, stirring constantly with a heat-proof spatula, bring the mixture to a full rolling boil (where the bubbles do not stop or lessen when you stir it). Once the mixture starts to boil, skim away any excessive foams or bubbles, stirring constantly all the time.
  4. Keep at a rolling boil for another 2 ~ 3 mins, stirring constantly till the mixture becomes clearer and brighter.
  5. Add in dark chocolates, mix well and bring it back to boil. Remove from heat immediately, stir in rum if using. The jam will be a little runny when hot but the consistency will be just right after it has cool off.
  6. Ladle hot jam into hot sterilised jars leaving a gap of about 1~2cm from the top. (Since I do not have an appropriate ladle or funnel, I poured the jam into my measuring cup before filling the jars. The sprout on the cup helps easy and clean filling.) Secure lids. Let cool. Jam will keep up to 3 months if stored in fridge or in a cool, dark cupboard. Once opened, store in fridge and best consumed within 1 week.

    Recipe source: adapted from 鲜美果酱轻松做! by Romi Igarashi
Note: *Do not reduce the sugar, as the amount is required to preserve the jam.

35 comments:

  1. Interesting! I have never thought of making jam myself too. Maybe should look for this book and give it a try. :)

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  2. The combo sounds delicious. Like you I too never try jams as good quality jams and preserves are so easily available but I might surprise myself with some of this good stuff!

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  3. another fabulous result, thanks for sharing. did u buy or borrow that book?

    u seem to be able to find interesting books in the library, perhaps i'm not patient and don't search the chinese cookbook section thoroughly enough. they are usually messy and full of torn n tattered books anyway...

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  4. Wow, chocolate & banana, what a perfect combination ! I never thought they could make jam, must try it out one day, the sugar content seems ok, most jam recipes will call for at least 1kg of sugar......

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  5. Hi SSB, you should take a look at this book, there are other interesting recipes. I will be trying a blueberry & banana jam next :)

    Hi Sunshinemon, indeed it is not a need, but a want...to make my own jam ;)

    Yuri, I borrowed the book from the library. I usually didnt have problem looking for books, yes, I have come across many books with missing pages!

    Hi Ganache-Ganache, do try it, and I hope you will like it too!

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  6. We'd like to invite you to participate in our July berry recipe contest. All competitors will be placed on our blogroll, and the winner will receive a fun prize! Please email me, haleyglasco@gmail.com, if you're interested. Feel free to check out our blog for more details. (Click on my name in the message header link to visit our blog. :)

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  7. This is one jam I never heard of, sounds tasty!

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  8. Hi hhb

    Very Nice homemade jam! Is it possible to incorporate in some honey as subsitute for sugar ? Regards, SP

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  9. hhb, BBQ banana with chocolate is yummy but I never thought about making that combo into a jam. Interesting.. might be a way to get my kids to eat banana. hehehe

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  10. talk about thinking outside the box! wow, i would never have thought of bananas and chocolate for a jam. I bet it's great! i could see this on a peanut butter sandwich!!

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  11. This looks good! Now I can think of one more way to use my bananas. Thanks for sharing!!

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  12. I've always loved the banana-chocolate combo, but have never come across nor thought of it as a jam! Great job, HHB!

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  13. Hi Haley, thanks for the invitation, will love to take part :)

    Hi Anonymous, since this is the first time I have tried making jam, I am not sure whether it is possible to subsitute the sugar with honey.

    Hi myfoodsafari, yes I love wrapping chocolates in between a sliced banana and toast it in the oven.

    Hi Bunny, I've never thot of this jam combo too!

    Aimei, yes this is a good way to use up bananas :)

    thanks ovenhaven!

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  14. can you make this jam using plums and chocolate instead of bananas?
    Ashanti

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  15. Hi Ashanti, I am not sure whether you can use plums, as this is the first time I have made this jam. So sorry, I'm of not much help here.

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  16. Hi! Banana and chocolate a mouthwatering combination!! Eager to try it!!
    But the cookbook is in chinese language, isn't it?

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  17. Hi Panselin, yes the book is in Chinese.

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  18. Hi HMM, i went to changi airport T3 and happen to passby a shop Choco Factory selling all types of choco wif fruits jams! similar to what u have made :D Hope to see more of your homemade jams! i have also made a simple strawberry jam yesterday nite :D

    http://pengskitchen.blogspot.com/2008/08/homemade-strawberry-jam.html

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  19. Hi happy homebaker,

    Thank you for sharing this recipe!! I managed to find the same book in the NLB from the link you gave (with the ISBN no) and made the chocolate banana jam immediately. It tastes so good albeit a tad sweet! :)

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  20. Hi...i have also try out the jam, i use hershey bittersweet choco, i cant help but reduce the sugar to 160gm :P the sweetness is just right!..hope i can find this book in NLB also..thanks HMM!

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  21. hi dear, can i just sterilise the jars without heating it in the oven ? is boiling good enough ? pls guide me, thanks.

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  22. Hi Anonymous, I would not recommend you to skip this step. It is best to heat it in the oven...it is better to be save than sorry, as there is no presevatives in this homemade jam.

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  23. Home canner7/12/08 9:20 am

    That recipe looks really, really tasty.

    I'd be somewhat concerned about keeping the resulting jam around for long, though - particularly up to 3 months in a cabinet! While the sugar content *might* be enough to impede botulism, bananas aren't a particularly acidic fruit, so it's not something I'd want to gamble on. And killing botulism requires pressure-canning temperatures, not just boiling-water level. (For more info, see, e.g., http://everything2.com/index.pl?node_id=1542272)

    (Yeah, 99.99% of the time, botulism won't be a problem. It's just that the stakes seem kind of high.)

    Still, that's no reason to not make the jam; just not to store it for long periods of time - and it looks tasty enough that I expect it wouldn't hang around too long! :)

    PS: Honey can generally be substituted for sugar in jam recipes, although more than a cup or so can start affecting the set, depending on the recipe.

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  24. Home Canner, thank you so much for all the useful tips and information :) I stored the two jars of jams in the fridge right away, they didn't stay in the fridge too long as it was gone within a week once I opened the jar :p

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  25. Hi Happy Homemaker,

    I cant wait to try out this jam! May i know if the choc is non-sweetened?

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  26. Hi JT, yes I used dark chocolates which is unsweetened.

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  27. Hi HHB,
    I like to try this jam recipe. I afraid I couldn't finish it by a week. Do you think it's still ok if I store in the fridge more than 2 weeks?

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  28. Hi Grace, don't worry, it can last for 2 weeks if you store it in the fridge. Although the book says to keep for not more than 1 week, but I had tried once, keeping it up to 4 weeks in the fridge, and I didn't have problem after eating it ;)

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  29. HiHHB,

    I wish to try this recipe but need to check with you on Step 5, Add in dark chocolates, mix well and bring it back to boil.

    Won't the chocolate be separated? I am afraid that the chocolate separated from the oil.

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  30. Peisxong, no the chocolate will not separate, it will just melt in the jam. Use low heat and keep stirring after the chocolate is melted.

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  31. Hmmm Not sure about banana chocolate jam, always willing to try though so this will be my next free afternoon filled! Thanks :)

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  32. Great recipie like Nutella but with Bananas. Really easy for beginner. My friends loved getting it as a gift.

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  33. Is there a chance that book is available in English? i can't even tell the title, silly monolinguist me!

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  34. Can you make this then freeze it?

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  35. Hi, I can't comment as I have not tried freezing it.

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