Fresh Pineapple Jam with Star Anise

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Making homemade jam or preserve is something rather satisfying. I do like a little of it of preserve spread on my toast every so often, and I do find the shop bought ones are far too sweet for me. With homemade food you have full control of how much sugar you add to your food. Preserve/Jam don’t have to be sweet for us to enjoy, here my little tip to still enjoy a preserve is not only to use fresh fruits but also to add some spices in it which adds a lot of flavour – all together you won’t miss the sugar in the preserve. Herr using Pineapple is yet another low calorie fruit that contain lots of nutritional values.

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Today is about pineapple, the name describes itself – it is like a big apple with spiky pines, attractive looking I would say. Pineapples or rather “Zanana” for the Mauritian (Ananas) are one of the most popular tropical fruits a perennial and drought-tolerant plant.

Pineapples have exceptional juiciness to it, it encases different tropical flavours as well combining sweet, sour and tartness. When I was little my mother used to make pineapple jam, that my dad would buy in bulk from the farmers allotment. As we all know almost all fruits that goes to the supermarket are chosen and only the designer ones makes I to the shelves. My dad used to but the lots of pineapple all straight from the farmers’ allotment, brought them home, peeled them and mum had the exciting job of trying out different recipes with pineapple.20160425_184537

One of them was the extremely aromatic sweet tangy compote, which I have recreated and happy to share with you. As I recall whenever mum was making pineapple preserve the beautiful tropical aroma spreading through the whole house was sublime. As kids we were very spoilt to have all these delicious homemade little treats.

They are a good source of many nutrients, such as vitamin C, excellent source of antioxidants, manganese, copper and folate. Fresh pineapple is low in calories. It is also a good source of other several health promoting minerals and vitamins that are essential for optimum health.

Pineapple itself is actually quite low in pectin, the ingredient that sets the jam, so for that reason I use a little agar agar to thicken and set the jam.20160531_204607

Pineapple jam is perfect for spreading on toast but can also be used as a glaze on roast meats. Edible girls always made with so much love….for me it is very special whenever I receive such gifts…..hint hint 20161206_191507_001

Ingredients Makes 2 small preserve jars

  • 1 medium-sized fresh pineapple
  • 3/4 cup sugar (add more depending on how sweet you like your jam)
  • 1 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon lemon or lime juice
  • 1 whole star anise
  • Pinch of ground cardamom
  • 1 vanilla pod – split and seed removed
  • Pinch of salt
  • ½ tsp chilli powder (optional)
  • 1 Tbs agar agar powder (you can use gelatine)20160531_204247

Method

    1. Peel the Pineapple. Using a shape knife remove all the “eyes” as I call them and grate the peeled fruit.
    2. Place a heavy deep pan on medium heat, add the pineapple pulp with all the juices, water and cook until the pineapple pulp becomes soft. 20161205_180403
    3. Now add the sugar, salt, vanilla, star anise and let leave to cook until the sugar has completely dissolved and the mixtures start to thicken (this can take up to 30 minutes).20160531_202519
    4. As the water starts to dry and the agar agar powder with a little water, lime juice, chilli powder and continue to cook for another 10 minutes.20161205_205227
    5. As the mixtures thicken further leaving the bottom of the pan, remove from the heat and it’s ready to be stored.20160531_204421
    6. Spoon the jam into a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Store it in the refrigerator for a few weeks. 20161206_191126

Brinda’s Note: This jam will preserve for up to 2 month in the fridge. You can use it as a glaze on roast meats.