A sudden trip popped up, unexpectedly and since I had some fruit in the fridge (the peaches were from last week), the bananas started to have spots, so since I already had dessert in the fridge, what better way to use them and make some jam.
Our neighbour who has the citrus grove next door has two fig trees and he has told us to harvest any fruit from his grove, as he never comes to pick them.
So we were lucky to find and pick about 600 grams of figs as well. I remembered there were also some grapes in the fridge after I took the picture.
I have made several combinations using figs but pairing them with bananas was the first time. I was a bit reluctant at first when I decided to add the bananas in the jam but I love to experiment and try new flavours. Most of my jams are flavoured with rose geraniums but this time I wanted something different so my choice was cinnamon. Try the combination and you will not regret it.
My directions are simple. Although I have weighed the products and used a thermometre, you can easily make the jam using basic equipment. General instructions about jam making will tell you that for each kilo of fruit, you usually use 1 kilo of sugar. However, those are instructions for dummies and sometimes we have to use some common sense. Figs, bananas and grapes are fruit with high sugar levels, so for the quantity of fruit I used, I reduced the sugar to just enough to preserve it and not make it overly sweet. If you want it on the sweeter side, you can add more sugar if you like. I love leaving some chunks of fruit in the jam, so that I can serve them on top of ice cream, on puddings, or even with Greek yoghurt, it’s delicious.
Since I have a thermometre, I used it during the second stage of boiling but simultaneously I also checked the time and it took about half an hour to set. However, the time also depends on what equipment you are using. A shallow pot will help the juices evaporate much quicker. In this case, if you are not sure, you will have to do the testing by putting a small amount of jam in a cold saucer. However if you still have any doubts that the jam has not properly set, you can preserve it in the refrigerator for a couple of weeks.
Until recently I would peel the figs but when I made some halloumi and fig appetizers and made them with the skin on, they tasted just perfect, so they went in the jam with the skin on, as well as the other fruit, except of course the bananas.
When the jam was cooked, there was nothing to remind you that the fruit were with the skin on.
Banana Jam with Figs, Peaches and Grapes
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Makes: about 2.5 kilos
- 825 grams banana (6 bananas)
- 725 grams peaches (4 peaches)
- 600 grams figs (14 figs)
- 175 grams seedless sultana grapes (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 1 kilo sugar
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- Wash the fruit and cut them into big chunks.
- Put them in a large pot together with sugar. Let the juices of the fruit come out to wet the sugar. You can speed up the process, by pressing the fruit with a potato masher (I used the wooden spoon).
- When there is no visible sugar, add the cinnamon stick and bring to a boil. Lower the heat (I bring the temperature from 12 to 10) and cook the jam, mixing regularly for one hour. (While the jam is boiling you may see some froth forming on top. Just ignore it and continue mixing as this will not affect the jam. While cooking the jam, press the fruit with the wooden spoon to make smaller pieces. If they slip away, especially the grapes, put them in the wooden spoon and use a fork to press them).
- Cook the jam for one hour and turn off the heat. (I cooked it on the ceramic stove, so I left it on the stove, which adds a few more minutes of cooking). When it cools, cover the pot with the lid.
- Next morning check the jam. If it has set and is thick enough put it back on the heat, add the lemon juice and when it comes to a boil turn it off.
- However, if it has not set, more boiling is necessary.
- When it starts boiling bring the stove button down to number ten again. Add the lemon juice and keep mixing until the temperature of the thermometre shows 105o C / 220o F.
- Remove from the heat and when it cools store in sterilized jars.
You can find many more Greek recipes in my cookbook “More Than A Greek Salad”, and “Mint, Cinnamon & Blossom Water, Flavours of Cyprus, Kopiaste!” both available on all Amazon stores.
Other relevant recipes:
Kopiaste and Kali Orexi,