Other People’s Preserve is my opportunity to shine a spotlight on some of the very delicious jams, pickles, and condiments being made by dedicated professionals. If you see one of these products out in the wild, consider picking up a jar, tub, or bottle!
We Love Jam’s Blenheim Apricot Jam is one of the reasons I started canning as an adult. Back in the days when I was still working for the now long-defunct Slashfood, the folks at We Love Jam sent me a jar of their signature apricot jam in the hopes of getting some coverage.
Though I’d grown up with jars of homemade blueberry, blackberry, and plum preserves in the fridge, I wasn’t familiar the gloriousness of handmade apricot jam. However, I was an immediate convert. I wrote a glowing review and illustrated it with a terrible photograph (thankfully, my photography skills have improved some since those days).
Since then, apricot jam has become one of my staple homemade preserves. I get a half bushel of apricot seconds nearly every summer and turn the into jam, butter, bbq sauce, and halves in honey.
Last spring, thanks to Maggie at Eat Boutique, I found myself in possession of half a jar of We Love Jam’s Apricot once again. I was reminded that while my apricot products are good, there is something unique about the Blenheim and the jam it becomes. At $10 for a 9 ounce jar, it’s a worthy splurge for your favorite apricot lover (their other flavors are also delicious, but this one will always be my favorite).
Disclosure: I wound up with a half empty jar of this jam after an Eat Boutique tasting event last spring. I didn’t pay for it, but all opinions expressed here are entirely my own.
I hear you.
Only I don’t buy apricot jam in the stores. We’ve always had an apricot tree (Royal Blenheim cross) and the apricots in stores as well as the jams can’t hold a candle to it.
Now that I’m making jam again I canned some apricots, then I made some jam. This year it was spiced apricot bourbon.
Spirits and spices are my new thing and I must say this particular recipe was awesome and has gone on the make this every year list.
The only way to do apricot jam is to have your own tree. These apricots have a short growing season and a short shelf life. They bruise easily so you’ll never find them in the stores. And the ones in the stores bred for longer shelf lives and little bruising are tasteless compared to the Blenheim and Royal and other backyard apricots.
I put apricot jam on the grow your own list. If you can’t, don’t even bother with those orange colored edible golfballs you buy in the store. You’re wasting your time.
I have a favorite story about Blenheim apricot jam.
About 23 years ago I was expecting my third child and was visiting my parents in the San Joaquin Valley in California. My dad worked in the farming industry and came home one day with the huge trunk in his four-door sedan loaded with Blenheims. One of the farmers he worked with was tearing out his Blenheims to plant another variety.
As mlaiuppa said, Blenheims are too soft and tender to really make it to a grocery store and there just wasn’t a market for gorgeous, flavorful fruit that couldn’t make it to the store. So he was replanting with some of those beautiful, tasteless ones because that’s what consumers wanted.
My dad was allowed to pick all he wanted before the trees were pulled out and take them home. Mom pulled out her quart jars and Dad went to the store for sugar and pectin and I started pitting and chopping. I made batch after batch of flavorful Blenheim apricot jam, probably about seven or eight in all, leaving us with boxes of quarts of gold. They lasted a number of years and every time I ate some of that jam I remembered the happiness of being pregnant and the bounty of the Valley.