...it's time to start the canning season. After a thrift store stop that left me empty-handed, i thought i'd check out the nearby grocery outlet, to see if i could score on provisions, instead. And score i did: among the odd bits of produce on offer was a small box of apricots at 99 cents a pound. I left with all the ones that weren't too squishy already, a total of about a pound and two-thirds. Not enough for a real batch of anything by themselves, so i set about looking or something to pair them with.
Raiding the trees and bushes at the barn (because free fruit is even better than cheap fruit), i came up with a few sour cherries and a few red currants, and after an evening of hunting recipes - which left me wishing i had lots more apricots, so i could try a few of them - i settled on this jam. I worried a bit about the set, because even with cutting the recipe in half, the proportions were a bit off: more apricots and fewer currants, and i knew the currants provided most of the pectin. In the end, though it took forever to gel, it was fine, and the color is simply glorious. Aside from the apricot/currant imbalance, the only alteration was a wee splash of brandy as it cooked. I ended up with four half-pints, and one of the tiny little four-ounce jars - plus just enough extra to slather on an English muffin for quality control. It's tart and sunny, and if you have the good fortune to find both apricots and red currants at the same time, i suggest you pounce.