Saturday, July 27, 2013

Savor The Summer: Garlic Ginger Pepper Jam

I love the taste of Summer from the fresh corn to the nice fiery hot Jalapenos I grow in the back yard.  I also like grilled meats and think that once in awhile you might like to have something sweet and hot on a freshly grilled chop.  Enter this jam.

Made from North Texas grown Banana peppers and Jalapenos right out of my backyard, this stuff is addictive.  It looks like a lot of work for a little reward, but now I understand why Pepper Jam is so expensive.  And why it is worth every cent.

Grown in my backyard!

Don't use cheap sugar.

Substitute other good vinegar to taste.

Fresh ingredients

Monster hot Thai Finger Peppers

Locally grown Banana Peppers from the Denton Farmer's Market

Everything is better when you use OJ

Locally grown red onions from the Denton Farmer's Market

Ingredients:  Yield 3 8oz jars

#1 Mild chili peppers (I used Banana Peppers)
6-8 Jalapenos 
10-12 Small hot chili peppers (I used Thai Finger Chile Peppers)
3 Medium Onions
1 Red bell pepper
1 1/2 Cups sugar
1/2 Cup Apple Cider Vinegar
1/2 Cup Garlic wine vinegar (sub any good vinegar - White Balsamic would be really awesome)
1 Whole head garlic (I like more so I used 1 1/2 heads)
2" Peeled fresh ginger
Zest and juice of 2 lemons
1 Cup orange juice
1/2 Cup water
1 Tsp. salt - I like Pink Salt or Kosher Salt

Sterilize and prepare your jars.  I used a smaller stock pot than my usual canning pot.  I used a silicone trivet in the bottom to keep the jars off the bottom of the pot.  Boil for 10 minutes and hold in the hot water until ready to fill. You can also just refrigerate this jam. Some say it has so much vinegar and sugar it will keep on the shelf, but I err on the side of caution always when preserving food.

Mix all the liquids together and I added the lemon zest in as well.

Prep the ingredients:  peel the garlic and onions. Chop the onions and leave the garlic whole.  Rough chop everything else and all to a big bowl.  I chopped the small Finger Peppers and added them to the food processor along with the ginger and a little of the liquid mixture.  Pulse until smooth and leave in the food processor bowl.

Add the other peppers and pulse until they are all tiny mince.

Add everything to the pot and get ready to cook.  This needs to boil hard until it reaches the desired consistency - something like a caramelized mixture.  It took me almost an hour to reduce it down to the consistency I wanted.

This is not going to be a gummy, jelly-like jam like you buy at the grocery. This is more of a chutney textured mixture.

I ladled it into hot sterilized jars and processed it for 15 minutes in a boiling water bath.

Let it cool on the counter overnight and VOILA!  Great on grilled meats, fish or dumped on top of ncie Goat Cheese and served with a pita chip or a parmesan cracker.

Delicious on the hoof.  You have to try this.

Bonus recipe:  Grilled Asian Pork Chops

This marinade works for about a dozen chops. They are great to grill and then freeze for later.  


1/3 Cup Teriyaki marinade
1/4 Cup Tamari or other low sodium soy sauce
2 Tablespoons Thai chili paste (more if you like hotter!)
1 Tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1 Teaspoon cumin
1 Teaspoon garlic powder
1 Teaspoon onion powder
1 Teaspoon chili powder
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
1/3 Cup neutral oil (Canola or vegetable oil)

Mix it all and pour over chops in a sealable plastic bag and let marinate overnight Turn when you think about it.

Grill the chops over a hot fire and turn once or twice until ALMOST done.  Put them in a Dutch oven and wrap in a heavy beach towel.  Let sit for 30 minutes to finish cooking and get those juices back into the center of the chops.  Delicious.  This works for chicken too.

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