Yesterday I started up a pot of Officer’s Jam. I’ve been dying to make this for years and am happy I finally found a nice big ceramic pot big enough.
Take one big ceramic pot (which can hold at least 10 litres of fluid) and hopefully with a close-fitting lid.
As the season progresses, add to this pot all the fresh fruit you can find in successive layers.
For each kilo of fruit you put in, add a layer of 500 gram sugar (so half the weight of whatever fruit you put in.)
Leave to sit for an hour or so, then cover with 40 % alcohol (rum, brandy, whisky, vodka, gin)
Keep the pot well closed with a layer of cling film and then a lid.
You gradually add layers of fruit and sugar over about 6-8 months, keeping it all well topped with your favourite 40% alcohol, and keeping the fruit weighted down if need be. Add whatever fruit you want as it is fresh. (Although avoid currants, gooseberries and rhubarb as these tend not to suit the mix.) Do not stir the fruit, just let it sit, brewing. When the pot is full to the brim seal it tightly and then let it sit f or about 2 months … then start enjoying. If you are using large pieces of fruit you might like to cut them up, and peel any skin if you want. Pit cherries if you wish, but it doesn’t matter if you don’t.
Use the fruit for puddings, over ice cream, however you want. (Once you open the pot and start to use, give it a bit of a slow stir to mix the fruit.) The alcohol can be strained and sipped as a delightful fruity liqueur.
Use within 12 months.
Do not drive after consuming!
I started off yesterday with layers of fresh pineapple and lots of sugar and whiskey. Today I will add a layer of strawberries and sugar.
As a bonus I now have the heads of the pineapples sitting in water hoping they will grow roots so I can plant them out. The way of doing this is helpfully explained in this video:
And tonight I try out my elderflower champagne!