My mother loved making jam, or confiture as we called it. She would gather whatever was falling from the trees at her mother’s house in the country and pile it in the trunk of our car for our pilgrimage back to our apartment in Paris. The next afternoon, while my sisters were napping, we would break out her impossibly heavy copper saucepan and get to work.
- Cut your apples into quarters.
- Throw them in a large stock pot. Squeeze the juice of the lemons on top. Cover with water and boil for an hour.
- Cover a sieve with cheesecloth. Place the sieve over a large bowl. Put the cooked apples in a sieve in two batches and squeeze gently to collect the juices. Repeat for the second batch. You should have about 7 cups of liquid. You can now discard the apples.
- Place the liquid back in the stockpot. Add the sugar and bring to a boil.
- Lower the heat and simmer for an hour or two, until the jelly is thickened and darkened.
- Meanwhile, in a separate large stockpot, boil your canning jars.
- When your jelly is ready (if it has reached 220 degrees fahrenheit or gels when a small drop is put on a chilled plate), remove the jars from the boiling water carefully with tongs. Pour the jelly in using a canning funnel, leaving a half an inch of space at the top. Screw on the lids.
- Place each jar back into the boiling water for 10 minutes to process the jars.
- Remove them again and place them inverted on the counter until completely cooled to complete the sterilization process.
- As they cool, you’ll hear a delightful pop as the jar lids seal completely. They’ll stay tightly sealed until you open them, hearing the same pop again. These jars will keep a year in a cool, dark place. The jelly is delicious both on toast and chicken!