The first homemade jam I ever tasted was made with homegrown plums. I was just four or five years old and the trees in our backyard were having a bumper year. My mom picked enough to fill her yellow enamel colander, gave them a good rinse under the tap, and turned them in sweet, slightly drippy preserves. We ate those plums over pancakes and with oatmeal every chance we got.
Though I will often tell people that blueberries are my foundational fruit (and they were the star in my very first solo batch of jam), there is something about the flavor of plum jam that makes my brain go, “ah yes, THIS is what homemade jam should taste like.”
I recently made my first batch of plum jam for this season (I was asked by Anolon gourmet cookware to develop this particular recipe), from the same kind of sturdy black plums that used to grow in our southern California yard. I added a little ground cardamom for extra depth and I cooked the whole thing in the 7.5 quart wide stock pot from the Anolon Advanced line. Though I don’t normally gravitate towards non-stick cookware for jam making, the width and low walls of the pan made it irresistible.
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post (hopefully that was clear before you got to this disclosure statement). Anolon has compensated me for the creation of the plum jam recipe. They sent me the stockpot in which I made the jam (I did really like it, though), and they’re providing the cookware set for the giveaway. The thoughts and words are still all entire mine.
Plum Cardamom Jam
- 5 pounds plums
- 4 cups granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- Wash plums well and cut them in half to remove pits. Slice the plums into thin half moons and heap them into a low, wide pan.
- Add the sugar and stir to combine. Cover the pan and let the plums macerate for at least an hour.
- When the plums are quite juicy and most of the sugar has dissolved, remove the cover from the pan and place it on the stove.
- Add the cardamom and lemon juice and bring the fruit to a boil.
- Cook the fruit at a controlled boil, stirring regularly, for 30 to 40 minutes, until the plums soften and the syrup thickens. You’ll know when the jam is done because it will become more resistant to stirring, and when you pull the spoon out of the pan, the droplets will be thick and slow moving.
- While the plums cook, prepare a boiling water bath canner and 8 half pint jars.
- When the jam is done, remove the pan from the heat. Funnel it into the prepared jars.
- Wipe the rims, apply the heated lids and clean rings, and process the closed jars in a boiling water bath canner for 10 minutes (do not start your timer until the pot returns to a full, rolling boil).
- Once the time is up, remove the jars from the canner and set them on a folded kitchen towel to cool. The lids should seal promptly and will often make a pinging or popping sound as the vacuum forms. When the jars are sealed, the center of the lids will be concave and when pressed, the lid will not move or wiggle.
My favorite cookware is my fire engine red tramontina dutch oven. I use it for almost every recipe that calls for a large pan – canning recipes as well as chilis, soups and stews
My favorite pan is my 12 inch cast iron pan my friend Gabriel brought me from a garage sale. It was rusted and had burnt crust in it. I polished it up, seasoned it and now I make the best country breakfasts with bacon and eggs for him while he serenades me with his guitar in the morning.
My favorite item right now is my dutch oven. I love that I can make jams, soup, chilies, red sauce, and even bread in it.
9 inch cast iron skillet… antique and exquisitely seasoned
You know, I’m not sure if it counts, but my partner gave me an excellent electric kettle for Christmas this year and it’s definitely my favorite thing in my kitchen. If that doesn’t quite count, then it’s probably my pressure canner. It’s a Presto 23 (I think?) quart pot–it’s enormous and I can do loads of beans in it all at once. Love it!
My favorite pot is my 12-cup 4th burner pot.
I love my 6 quart all-clad covered saucepan. I use it almost every day.
Our cast iron skillet is probably my favorite because it can be used on the stove top as well as in the oven.
I love my cast iron dutch oven… going from stovetop to oven in one dish is amazing!
My favorite pot is my le creuset round dutch oven that I got as a wedding present. It fits perfectly on my burner, heats up evenly and holds heat for a long time. It’s perfect for making soups and stews and makes making jam a breeze as it holds an even temperature and helps to keep the bottom from scorching.
Favorite pan is my 12″ cast iron skillet, love the high sides, easy clean up, we don’t need to use special utensils and it’s nearly indestructible, which is necessity around my house.
A stockpot I was gifted for my wedding has become my favorite, or at least, most used. That jam looks heavenly.
I love my 10 inch cast iron skillet. I was always intimidated by the upkeep of cast iron and stuck to non-stick until I realized non-stick doesn’t stay that way but cast iron really does with just a few simple steps. I love how it evenly cooks, retains heat, and just cooks food so well.
I love my cast iron skillet. It has great high heat, can sear anything and reminds me of my grandmother’s kitchen.
I love my le creuset dutch oven, its the good sturdy stand by that does everything well!
My favorite is my 5qt Dutch oven. I use it all year round.
I love my 8″ non stick pan with a blue heat proof handle. My parents bought it at a restaurant supply store (one for all us kids one Christmas) and I use it for everything, particularly eggs.
I love my Cuisinart wok. I use it for almost everything. From sautéing vegetables, meats and noodles. Just made clam linguini over the weekend.
I love my enamel pot. It makes soups, stews and sauces evenly
It has to be my slow cooker- especially now that fall is on it’s way. I love to cook soups and chilli’s in it.
My cast-iron skillet that has never once been washed in true Southern style. I cook everything in it and I still don’t understand teflon.
My favorite cookware is my 12″ cast iron frying pan, I bet that I use it every day.
My favorite is my cast iron skillet. I don’t use it enough.
I love my enameled Dutch oven. Not only does work well on the stove as well as the oven, but no matter what I cook in it, clean up is always a snap.
My sister brought me a Faberware covered oval dutch oven as a hostess gift that I absolutely love. I use it several times a week; it’s so versatile.
a dutch oven that we picked up from someone’s trash when I was a small child. My mom has cooked in it for years. Occasionally, will borrow it and use it to cook certain family recipes. We don’t have them written down but know how much goes into that pot. One man’s trash…..was this family’s treasure!
I love using my Mom’s Cast Iron Skillet !! I use it all the time for Breakfast, Supper & Fried foods !! Thank you for allowing me to enter !! luv your site !!
I adore my Swiss Diamond pans! They are so incredible, I don’t think a day goes by when we don’t use one!
My favorite piece of cookware is a GreenPan dutch oven . . . it’s wonderful for transitions from stovetop to oven for many of my ‘slow’ recipes.
My favorite pan is a 6″ cast aluminum pan that was my mothers, from the 1950’s. It’s older than me. perfect size to make fried egg sandwickes.
Definite favorite: big heavy 13- or 14-inch skillet, about 5 inches deep. All of last year’s cooking & jam-making was done in standard-depth 8- or 9-inch skillets, and I feel like life has *changed* since getting this new one!
Black iron pot without question. It weighs about 15lbs but it never comes off the stove. Perfect for cajun cooking.
I love my cast iron dutch oven. I make bread and everything else in it. We are going to Yellowstone later this month and it will go there also!
My all time favorite is a small Dutch oven with a blue emaille coating and heavy bottom by Silit. I have it almost 30 years and will last another 30. Perfect for anything from jams to sauces.
My favorite piece of cookware is my 8×10 glass pan. It’s all I brought with me to college my freshman and sophomore years of college (before I had a real kitchen) and I used it to cook all of my meals.
We have lots of pots for a 2 person household, but the one that gets the most use is the 1 quart All-Clad saucepan.
My favorite is not a fancy piece – it is a large soup pot that I often use to make jams & preserves. It has never let me down!
My favorite pot is my 12 quart stock pot
Love my All American pressure canner.
Mine is a Lodge cast-iron pineapple cake pan.
My favorite cookware is a large stainless skillet that’s oven safe. It’s so versatile.
My favorite cookware is a large, deep t-fal skillet I won at a cooking show. Thanks for the giveaway!
Actually I have a stock pot that I use for water bath canning as it is significantly smaller than the water bath canner and serves the same purpose in less time. The only thing was I had to find something to put in the bottom to allow water circulation around all the jars…and many jar rings got used. This would be a great set to have as I still use the copper bottom Revere ware set my grandma got in the 1940’s. And although I love antiques…sometimes they leave much to be desired.
My favorite piece of cookware is a 14 inch cast iron frying pan. I found it in my grandparents basement. When I asked my grandfather if I could have it, he said sure, just don’t tell your grandmother. She was not much of a cook so she never missed it. I’ve had it now for over 30 years.
I could not live without a 7qt large covered saucepan! It gets use for every meal as we aim to do a one-pot dinner.
Two things I couldn’t cook without, my large flat round cast iron grill to make
pancakes, french toast, bacon and eggs, etc. The other one is my set of square
Corning Ware cookware, goes from freezer to oven or stove burner. They have
Pyrex lids and if you turn them upside down you can stack them in fridge for leftovers.
They are pretty enough to put on the table at meal time.
I have a set of three Calphalon non-stick frying pans and I use at least one of them every day for so many different kitchen chores.
In our little kitchen, the multipurpose Calphalon sauce pan cooks everything from breakfast sausages to marinara sauce.
My favorite is my dutch oven. It’s not a name brand, but it’s reliable and so versatile I use it all the time!
8-inch cast iron skillet, hands down. It’s not so good for jam-making, though!
I love my cast iron skillet (along with everyone else it seems). It has high sides and is my work horse. I cook about everythig in it as well as abuse it to no end. Its used as a mallet, tenderizer, weight, and sandwich press amoung other things lol
I have never used a dutch oven, reading through the replays – I’m missing out.
My cast iron skillet gets the most use year round. This summer, as I’ve explored new canning recipes, I’ve been getting a lot of use out of a medium sized stockpot; it is just the right size for water batch canning a few jars at a time.
I have been getting so much use out of my giant pressure canner this year. Not just for pressure canning, but just as a giant pot to sterilize, water bath, pressure cook…. It’s a great multi-use piece of equipment.
Stock pot as I love to make soup
My favorite is a 4 qt Cuisinart that we use for everything.
My favorite cookware is my spagetti pot. I put 3 pans together from goodwill. I use it for pasta and blanching, and anything I have to cook and strain. I love that they fit together like they were made to.
It’s all about a Dutch Oven, right? It even sounds warm and delilcious!
I love my cast iron skillet. I use it more than probably every other pan in my kitchen combined!
Well, actually it’s my 4th burner pot, that you recommended. I use that thing all the time. And on the rare occasions that it’s back in the cabinet, my toddler pulls it out, puts his matchbox cars in the steamer basket and carries it around. Good thing it’s a sturdy pot!
My Staub 4 qt round enameled cast iron dish. Its a jam pot, bread baker, skillet, etc….
i bought a set of japanese small enameled pots at an estate sale. they are orange and nest, so they can be separate units: small pot, small frying pan. or, the frying pan is the lid. or, the frying pan is the top of the (wee) double boiler. love. it. also, so cheery and bright!
I love my huge stainless steel pressure canner and have used it for many years. I fear it’s time for some new canning equipment as the pressure gauge is a bit wobbly now.
I have this old copper bottom pot that my mom gave me when I got married. It’s the perfect pot for getting the right saute on vegetables. Specially for Indian food.
Dutch oven, hands down. It’s ancient, but we literally do everything in it, including making jam (i know, discoloration, etc. but it’s so heavy the jam never burns!).
a square “pizza” stone that i bake everything on! it comes out so evenly cooked and after 10 years its seasoned perfectly!!
Staub stockpot. Does it all, does it well. Pricey, but worth it and never need more than one.
My favorite is a pan I inherited from an elderly neighbor, sold as a chicken fryer. I like the width, the low sides, and that it has a lid. I cook everything in it.
Hmm…it is a toss-up between my stainless steel stock pot and my cast iron skillet.
The pressure cooker I got from my husband’s grandma. It takes all the time out of cooking beans!
My favorite is my skillet pan which I pretty much use for everything!!
My Calphalon stainless steel saute pan…I use is most every day. I don’t even put it away…it lives on top of my stove.
My favorite is my Towncraft stainless steel 5 quart pot. I even use it to waterbath my small jars of jam.
My favorite is a stainless steel shallow skillet I got at a yard sale. It makes the perfect scrambled eggs. Thanks!
Absolute favorite thing is a small-ish Le Creuset round pot that is just the right size for any meal for my family from curries to pasta sauces. And it is bright red. What is not to love!
I love my cast iron skillet, even if it’s a pain to lug around.
Skillet for sure!
I love ALL my kitchen tools, well, almost all. But I absolutely love my cast iron dutch oven and skillet. They are great because they go on the stove top or in the oven. They just cook so well and evenly, and clean easily too.
My favorite is my Le Creuset dutch oven. Still in love with it after many years.
My recent new favorite for small batch jam is my Wolfgang Puck breadmaker. It has a jam setting for those little batches of improvisational fruit jam.
As an aside, I love my new Dessert Bullet…..no more wasted bananas!!!
I love the cast iron dutch oven we purchased recently. It’s oval and my husband uses it for almost everything.
My favorite piece of cookware is my dear mother-in-law’s stainless steel pie pan which we inherited when she passed away ten years ago. My wild black raspberry pies and quiches bake so evenly using her pan. I think of her every time I use it. I am forever scouring garage sales and resale shops for another one!
My clay pot! It is such a fun way to cook, is beautiful to look at, and makes anything and everything turn delicious.
I have a cast iron Dutch oven we got as a wedding gift, that I’ve used over and over through the years. I love that thing!
My favorite is a stock pot. I use it for making goat cheese and soups and stews. Could not be without it.
My jam pot
I have an All-Clad Dutch oven that I adore for its versatility. I feel like I can do anything in it. It’s also my main pot for cooking jam!
As a side note, I can’t wait to try the plum cardamom jam recipe. When I was a child, my family mostly preserved food in the freezer, but we made plum jelly every year (until the deer found our plum orchard). We’d put up dozens of jars a year and eat it all year long. It’s a smell that permutes my childhood memories, still. For years after we stopped beating the deer to the plums, we had jelly for sandwiches. Now that I’m a canner, I prefer making fruit jams to fruit jellies (partially for laziness – I hate the straining process – and partially because I love fruit bits). But last year when I had the chance to buy some plums, I couldn’t resist making a couple of batches of plum jelly. It was more work than jam, and hair-raising because I wanted it to come out right *so badly*, and was so afraid the jelly would end up not setting, or be murky and clouded. But it was worth every bit of the work when I was looking at those lovely, perfectly crystalline jars of plum jelly.
It was a good moment. Making plum jam will be the best of both worlds!
All clad 10 inch stainless steel skillet with straight sides and lid. Great for pasta, rice, veggies, searing meats etc. Goes from stove top to oven I have two and use at least one every day.
I love my 10″ square cast iron skillet. I use it everyday and never leaves my stovetop.
My pots and pans are all pretty old as I have not been much of a cook until now. So I am in the process of replacing everything – I think I have had it all since I got married 29 years ago! I am enjoying the process of cooking now more than ever. I guess my favorite is my stock pot as I like to make soups etc., that I can then freeze for later.
I inherited my grandmother’s cast iron Dutch oven. I use it for everything from making soup, cooking roasts, canning jam and frying chicken. It’s over 50 years old and still looks new!
All time favorite is my dutch oven. It is so versatile, I can’t live without it!
I use my enamal lined dutch oven the most. It is a beautiful blue and looks so pretty with jammy jam bubbling away in it.
I’m in love with my stand mixer but what probably gets the most use is my small nonstick frying pan that I mainly use for eggs over easy and for argentine-style tortillas (what most people probably know as fritattas).
What I use most in the kitchen, however, are a small chef’s knife and my all time favorite tomato knife.
Dutch oven. No contest.
My favorite….dutch oven, of course!
My cast iron Dutch oven is my favorite! I love making soups in it!
My favorite pan is my dutch oven.
I love my cast iron skillet.
My grandma gave me her cast iron chicken fryer with lid. I don’t use it often but when I do I like to think of her and all the food she made.
My favorite is my stockpot. I use it for processing my jelly jars as well as make stock. I just throw some bands in the bottom and put the jelly jars on top. It is so much nicer than dragging out my large canner. I also like my jelly pot as well. I use both pots a lot.