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My Mother’s Apricot Jam, with Variation

An early childhood memory is breakfast at my paternal grandmother’s house after my sister and I had a sleep-over there: toast with peanut butter and apricot jam. My mother traditionally made this jam, and here I have used her recipe, adding the variation of the apricot kernel for flavour, suggested by Melissa Hamilton and Christopher Hirsheimer in Canal House Cooking, Volume No. 4.

5 c. mashed apricots (approximately 3 pounds, 14 large apricots, or 21 smaller ones, as shown here)
1/4 c. lemon juice
7 c. sugar
1 package Certo crystals
1 t. butter
apricot kernels (smash the pit with a hammer to reveal almond-tasting kernels which give more depth of flavour to the jam)

Add juice and Certo to prepared fruit in large pot. Bring to boil and add sugar all at once. Add 1 t. butter to reduce amount of foam. Bring to a rolling boil for 1 minute.  Skim and discard foam and bottle. Place one apricot kernel on top of jam and cover with paraffin wax. Makes about 7 6-oz. jars.

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