ALMONDS from APRICOTS ? . . . Yes ! (but I’ll explain later).
This summer, I’ve been giving a few cooking workshops during the ecologically-conscious Festival #ENSEMBLE! in the Cité de la Mode et du Design, overlooking the Seine river and which is literally a 5-minute bike ride from my place.
The event takes place over a 6-week period, highlighting ecologically-friendly fashion, green design, architecture, lectures, exhibitions, performances, encounters and of course food, eating and cooking, today and in the future.
I was happy to participate by animating 4 cooking workshops during the weekends and in contributing to the Opération Garde-Manger (Pantry Operation in English) in which different shops, delicatessens, food companies, chefs and bloggers will be preparing and donating all types of preserves which will be sold to the public and the benefits of this 3-day sale from August 25-27 will go to the Le Récho Association which is involved with delivering aid to refugee camps across Europe … it’s a good cause.
Back to the JAM. Apricot jam isn’t particularly fancy (but lovely and summery) nor is it a difficult process, once you get past the pitting, the chopping, the mixing, the cooking, and the transferring to sterilized jars.
Jams = cooked fruits + sugar (sometimes some added pectin but I use the pectin from the lemon rinds) + other optional flavorings.
What did I do differently ? I used APRICOT ALMONDS which are those little things inside the kernels (which is actually the pit and usually discarded) but if you crack it open, SURPRISE ! When fresh, the almond tastes bitter like a bitter almond (yeah, just backwards) and no it’s not toxic unless you consume kilograms (but some prefer to avoid them). In addition, I grill/roast them in the oven, which removes their bitterness and when added to the cooked jam, adds a new texture and taste … see how easy that is ? No waste (or almost none).
Enjoy . . . whether you make some yourself following this recipe or if go to the sale to buy one of mine (I made 12 small jars and I’ll drop them off next week before flying to Montreal). By the way, I also put together some pretty yet sober country-style packaging to make it all “sugar & spice and all that’s nice” . . . :)