This small batch blueberry cara cara orange jam is a perfect solution for those of us who are itching for summer. It uses frozen blueberries and fresh winter citrus to make a zippy, colorful spread.
It’s fermentation month in the Mastery Challenge, but after several batches of sauerkraut and garlicky brined carrots, I’ve been itching to make a batch of jam. And so earlier today I went digging through my freezer looking for some of the fruit I squirreled away last summer. After a bit of chilly archeology, I unearthed some blueberries and decided to combine them with some Cara Cara oranges that had been in my fruit drawer for over a month.
I love tucking away little packets of summer fruit for later processing. I freeze it in small portions, just a pound or two at a time, so that it’s easy to use and can be fitted into the bare corners of the freezer. It also helps take off some of the summer canning season pressure and also allows me to make interesting combinations that aren’t always possible when I work in season.
One of my all-time favorite examples of this seasonal bending is my recipe for Sweet Cherry Rhubarb Jam. I always try to hide two pounds of chopped rhubarb in the freezer when it’s in season so that it’s ready to be combined with cherries when they arrive. The tartness of the rhubarb really brightens the flavor of the cherries.
I demoed this recipe in my FB live earlier tonight (if you missed it, watch it here). And for more of my small batch recipes, look right here.
Blueberry Cara Cara Orange Jam
- 4 cups blueberries frozen or fresh
- 4 Cara Cara oranges segmented
- 2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1/2 lemon juiced
- Prepare a boiling water bath canner and three half pint jars.
- Combine the blueberries, orange segments, and sugar in a low, wide, non-reactive pan.
- Bring to a boil over high heat and then reduce the heat to medium. Simmer, stirring regularly and occasionally mashing with a potato masher until thick (12-18 minutes, depending on the height of the heat and the width of your pan). Towards the end of cooking, add the lemon juice.
- Funnel into the prepared jars. Wipe the rims, apply the lids and rings, and process in a boiling water bath canner for 10 minutes.
- When the time is up, remove the jars and set them on a folded kitchen towel to cool. When the jars have cooled enough that you can comfortably handle them, check the seals. Sealed jars can be stored at room temperature for up to a year. Any unsealed jars should be refrigerated and used promptly.
if I wanted to make a larger batch, like 3x as much, how much pectin should I use. and should I use regular or low sugar pectin ?
I have not tested this recipe in a larger quantity, so I really can’t advise. So sorry!
Thanks so much also does the size of the Orange matter in making this jam
I used Cara Cara oranges, which are typically tennis ball sized. If you use other varieties, it might change things slightly.
This sounds delicious and I would love to try it. I have one question, did you use any pectin in this? I didn’t see it in the instructions. Thank you!
I did not use pectin in this batch. I find that with these small batches, the natural pectin in the fruit is enough to create a set.
I made this with the ingredients and quantities listed and it made 5 half pints! I think the cara caras I got were probably bigger than the ones you said you had used – I saw the “tennis-ball sized” comment above – I just wanted to check and be sure that the acid levels would still be safe? I assume so because oranges are usually so acidic, but I’m not as familiar with cara cara oranges and don’t know if the acid level is the same as a regular orange? I was still able to obtain a beautiful set in just over the time listed.
It’s totally safe to have a higher yield. All those ingredients are high in acid, so there’s no danger.
When you mashed the fruit, did it leave behind any Orange membranes that you removed?
There were no membranes left.
I am using monkfruit or allulose to make the carb count lower and more diabetic friendly. Do you have any suggestions on converting the recipes from regular sugar to a sweetener I can use?
Using non-sugar sweeteners is tough, because they don’t help with either thickening or preservation. I suggest you read through these posts.
I’ve been reading the book 175 best jams, jellies, marmalades and other soft spreads by Linda Amendt. On every recipe containing orange she warns against using navel oranges and only using Valencia oranges as navel oranges “turn tough when cooked and contain an enzyme that will make them turn bitter during storage.” I’ve never seen this warning anywhere else. Valencia oranges aren’t common where I live, but navel and Cara Cara type navel are. Have you had any problems with navel oranges and canning? Is this a common problem?
I’ve never experienced that issue with navel oranges.
I used to make blueberry lemon “marmalade”. I bet this would be lovely with some orange &/or lemon peel in it!