Damson Plum Jam

Damson Plum Jam created by Yankiwi

If you are lucky enough to find them, get your hot little hands on some Damson plums. They are small and sour when fresh, but make the absolute best plum jam in the world. I have listed two different options for amounts of sugar/water in the recipe. The lower amounts will make a soft, very tart jam. That's the way I like it. With more sugar and water (keep them in proportion) you will get a more traditional jam, firmer and sweeter. I like it that way, too, I have to admit. Unfortunately, Damsons are clingstone and can't be pitted before the cooking starts. I have burnt myself quite badly a few times making this jam, while fishing out pits from the boiling pot, but this year (2004) I have figured out how to avoid that and have updated the recipe.

Ready In:
1hr
Serves:
Yields:
Units:

ingredients

directions

  • Wash and pick over the plums.
  • Combine the plums and the water.
  • Bring to a boil and cook 15 minutes, stirring constantly.
  • Allow to cool enough to handle - or completely, if you like - and fish out the pits (I put them through a food mill, and then removed the pits from the remaining pulp).
  • Return the pulp to the rest of the jam once the pits are out.
  • Meanwhile, put the jars into a canning kettle and cover with water to one inch above the tops of the jars.
  • Bring to a boil, boil 10 minutes to sterilize.
  • Return the plums to the jam kettle, and bring them back to the boil. Add the sugar to the plums, stirring to dissolve.
  • Boil to jam stage, about 20 minutes. Test for the gelling point with one of the following methods: Temperature test — Use a jelly or candy thermometer, and boil until mixture reaches the following temperatures at altitudes of: Sea level to 1,000 feet — 104°C/220°F; 1,001 feet to 2,000 feet — 103°C/218°F
  • Sheet or spoon test — Dip a cool metal spoon into the boiling jelly mixture. Raise the spoon out of the steam, about 12 inches above the pan. Turn the spoon so the liquid runs off the side. The jelly is done when the syrup forms two drops that flow together and sheet or hang off the edge of the spoon.
  • I like the"sheet" test.
  • As the jam cooks, remove any pits you may have missed.
  • Remove from the heat and stir and skim 5 minutes.
  • Pour into hot sterilized jars and seal with lids sterilized according to the manufacturers directions.
  • (Generally, boiled for 5 minutes.) Place jars of jam back in boiling water bath and boil for 5 minutes.
  • Let cool, and store when the jars have sealed.
Submit a Recipe Correction

MY PRIVATE NOTES

Add a Note
Advertisement
Enter The Sweepstakes
Advertisement

RECIPE MADE WITH LOVE BY

@Jenny Sanders
Contributor
@Jenny Sanders
Contributor
"If you are lucky enough to find them, get your hot little hands on some Damson plums. They are small and sour when fresh, but make the absolute best plum jam in the world. I have listed two different options for amounts of sugar/water in the recipe. The lower amounts will make a soft, very tart jam. That's the way I like it. With more sugar and water (keep them in proportion) you will get a more traditional jam, firmer and sweeter. I like it that way, too, I have to admit. Unfortunately, Damsons are clingstone and can't be pitted before the cooking starts. I have burnt myself quite badly a few times making this jam, while fishing out pits from the boiling pot, but this year (2004) I have figured out how to avoid that and have updated the recipe."
icons / sparkles / sparkles

JOIN THE CONVERSATION

icons / sparkles / sparkles
icons / camera
upload
icons / star / star-outline
review
icons / write-a-review
tweak
icons / question
ask
all
reviews
tweaks
q&a
sort by: icons / navigate / navigate-down
  1. francesh1
    I fix my damson jam almost the same ,but with less water, I am blessed to have 2 damson trees which I planted a few years ago.It was long time about 7 years before they had fruit.I have to spray them every year to keep the worms out of them.you have to spray the tree before they bloom and also after the tree blooms. the tree will have plants that come up from the roots of the tree that you can transplan,one year I harvested 20 lbs of fruit and shared with others.I am diabetic so I give most of my jam away as it is hard to find anymore.
    Reply
  2. Paul Toschi
    Damson Plum Jam Created by Paul Toschi
    Reply
  3. Paul Toschi
    Damson Plum Jam Created by Paul Toschi
    Reply
  4. Paul Toschi
    Getting rid of the pips is really easy. Get yourself a hand-powered Culinare "blender", toss in a handful or two of Damson plums and shred them by hand. This chops up the flesh into a shredded pulp, rather than a mush, which gives a great texture to the jam. Make yourself a sieve by drilling holes in a plastic bowl. A 9mm drill bit (3/8")worked for me, just small enough to prevent the pips getting through. Stir the pulp around with a wooden spoon, and you're left with the pips in the sieve and a negligible amount of fruit pulp. I processed a 10-liter bucket of fruit in about 30 minutes. If you let the pulp sit overnight, the purple and green or yellow takes on a beautiful red hue. I added sugar, poured some onto baking paper and put it in the hot summer sun to turn into yummy fruit leather. The rest was made into jam.
    Reply
  5. luves2kook
    First you need to know the difference between Damson plums and Santa Rosa plums. True Damson plums are elongated, have a very deep purple skin with the appearance of a slight grey dusting. Polish the skin, and the plum becomes irridescent. The flesh, when at the best ripness is a deep gold. Flavor is very sweet with a touch of honey. Damsons like a freeze in the winter and water in the spring ergo, they are native to the Pacific Northewest. Santa Rosa plums are spherical, with a white to yellow flesh. They are tart and no amount of sugar will overcome this without destroying the plum flavor. Since the skin if the Santa Rosa is not a deep purple, you will never get a rich purple jam from them either. Santa Rosas are native to California. Best to use them in cobblers.<br/>Jam the Damson. 1. Get a kitchen scale. 2.Remove the pits by slicing the plum lenghtwise. (easy) 3.DO NOT try to take skin off as that takes away color and flavor. 4. Prepare 4 pounds of pitted plums. 5.You should have a Cuisinart or similar to easily slice RAW plums.6.Put the 4 pounds of sliced, raw plums in a saucepan with 1/2 cup water and simmer for about 20 min. until cooked but NOT a pulp or puree. 7. To make jam use 5 cups of cooked fruit to 6 cups of sugar and 3 Tbs. lemon juice. If you use pectin follow that recipe (I do and make 8 8oz. jars). If you do not use pectin (plums do have a fair amount) combine mixture from step 6 with 5 cups of sugar, stir to disolve sugar and cook rapidly to boiling point, mixture should begin to thicken, and continue to cook, stirring to prevent sticking. When thick, remove from heat and ladel into hot (boiled) jars and seal. Then put in a waterbath canner for 10 minute.
    Reply
see 11 more icons / navigate / navigate-down
Advertisement