It’s November, so the countdown to holiday parties is on. Stock up on these natural jams as an easy hostess gift, and you’ll get an invite to the next party. Then share the back story for bonus points:
By watching videos of traditional French cooking methods and reading books by French pâtissière Christine Ferber, Wendy Read soon became well versed in the fine art of making all-natural jams.
Now she creates a variety of sweet condiments with the majority of ingredients sourced directly from farms within a 100-mile radius of her home. In the autumn, Wendy sells such popular fall flavors as Pumpkin Butter and Tangerine Ginger Rum online and at local farmers’ markets. They’re great for spreading on bread or biscuits, but Wendy also suggests trying them with vegetables, cheeses, and grilled meats. Her jams start at $9 for an 8-ounce jar. sunchowdersemporia.com
The Packaging: “I handwrite the labels the first six months while gauging demand. If the jam sells, I have them printed.”
The Fruit: “I pick all of my blackberries and blueberries at a nearby farm in Umatilla. There’s nothing like picking fresh fruit and turning it into jam.”
The Texture: “I use the French method of jam-making, meaning there’s no pectin mixed with the fruits as a thickener.”
The Process: “I cook with a wide-bottomed, copper pot that reduces the fruit faster and preserves the taste.”
The Uses: “Of course you can just slather it on toast, but I like to bake chicken or salmon and smear raspberry-pepper jam on it five minutes before it’s done.”