1lb Ripe Damson
1 lb Jam Sugar
1/4 pint of water
(follow this so if you weight 2 1/2 lb of damsons add the same in sugar and 3/4 pint of water, also jam sugar/ preserving sugar is found with the normal sugar in every large supermarket)
Sterilising the Jars
First prepare your jars, I use any glass jars that have the metal lids, was clean in soapy water.
Place in the oven (jars not lids), turn on the oven and set temp to 140c/160c, when the oven has reached its temp switch it off, and leave the jars in the oven until you use them.
I put the lids in boiling water for a couple of Min's also.
Stick a couple of plates in the fridge so you can test the jam setting.
Prepare the Damsons
Wash, and score the fruit, place in the largest saucepan you have.
Add the water and heat gently as a simmer and the fruit will start to burst out of their skins.
Warm the sugar in the oven whilst this is happening.
Then add to the fruit, still over a low heat to dissolve the sugar crystals.
Turn up the heat to high and stirring often, boil rapidly for 8-10mins.
The boring bit, where you lose the will to live, use a slatted spoon fish out the stones, you will be doing this the whole time it is boiling, and i know a couple escaped and are in the jars!!
Test for setting, put a little bit on one of the cold plates in the fridge, leave for a min or so. It has set when you run your finger through it it leaves a track mark.
If this hasn't happened keep boiling and testing every few or 5 minutes.
Potting the Jam
Remove the jars from the oven, and ladle into the jars, I found it easier to pour into a warm jug and then into the jars.
Cover the jars with the screw lids (you only need to use those wax disks if not using the metal lids).
As the jars cool down (mine were about an hour later, you will hear the jar lids pop creating the airtight seal. (so when you open you will get the pop!)
The wax discs do this for plastic lidded jars. This will remain good to go for around 3 years unopened.
And Eat with These...
Cant remember when I got this recipe but yummy all the same.
American Pancakes &amp; Maple Syrup
135g/4¾oz plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
2 tbsp caster sugar
130ml/4½fl oz milk
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 tbsp melted butter (allowed to cool slightly) or olive oil,
plus extra for cooking
Sift the flour, baking powder, salt and caster sugar into a large bowl.
In a separate bowl or jug, lightly whisk together the milk and egg, then whisk in the melted butter.
Pour the milk mixture into the flour mixture and, using a fork, beat until you have a smooth batter. Any lumps will soon disappear with a little mixing. Let the batter stand for a few minutes.
Heat a non-stick frying pan over a medium heat and add a knob of butter. When it's melted, add a ladle of batter. It will seem very thick but this is how it should be. Wait until the top of the pancake begins to bubble, then turn it over and cook until both sides are golden brown and the pancake has risen to about 1cm (½in) thick.
Repeat until all the batter is used up.
You can keep the pancakes warm in a low oven, but they taste best fresh out the pan.
Serve with lashings of real maple syrup and extra butter or your damson jam if you like