Strawberry and Vanilla Bean Jam
1) Hull the strawberries and place in a medium-large saucepan.
2) Finely grate the rind of the lemon, and add to saucepan.
3) Trim the pith of the lemon (the white bit underneath the skin). Cut the lemon into quarters and remove the seeds. Place the lemon flesh into the saucepan.
4) Cut the vanilla bean in half, then slit the bean lengthways (from top to bottom). Using the back edge (not the sharp edge) of the knife, scrape the seeds into the saucepan. Tie the empty skins of the vanilla bean up in a small piece of muslin or cheesecloth if you have any, for extra flavour. Add to saucepan.
5) Add the sugar.
6) Simmer for 20-25mins, stirring occasionally, until fruit is very soft and coming apart.
7) Boil rapidly for 10-15mins until it reaches setting point (i.e. until the top layer looks as though it is starting to “gel”; alternately, put a teaspoon of jam onto a saucer and drag the spoon tip down the middle of the jam – the jam halves should not rush to meet each other again).
8) Pot and try not to eat it all right away!!!
Rockmelon (Cantaloupe) and Kiwifruit Jam
250g rockmelon, cut up into ~2cm bits
250g kiwi, peeled and sliced
280-300g rapadura sugar
Follow the method of the strawberry jam above. May need a little extra initial cooking time.
*Rapadura sugar is the juice of the sugar cane, dried and crushed. It has very, very minimal processing, therefore you still retain a lot of the nutrients in addition to the sweetness.