One day, I swung by my neighbor’s house to pick some flowers and while I was there, he picked a couple of the habaneros growing in his backyard and passed a couple along to me. Obviously, I ran home and started looking through the recipes to find the exact recipe I wanted to make. Since it was right before the big canning weekend, I was elated to come across this recipe for Raspberry Habanero Jam in the Preserving by the Pint cookbook and I couldn’t wait to make it. Even better, it made just over 2 half pints, so I was able to give a tiny jar back to the neighbor who provided the pepper. I think of all the things I’ve made this year, this jam was my favorite. I have no doubt I’ll continue to make it in future seasons as well.
Raspberry Habanero Jam
1 dry quart raspberries (about 1.5 pounds)
1 1/2 c sugar
1 habanero pepper, sliced along the sides
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Prepare a boiling water bath and 2 half-pint jars. Place two lids in a small saucepan of water and bring to a gentle simmer.
In a medium bowl, combine the raspberries and sugar. Using a wooden spoon, stir the sugar into the fruit, mashing up the fruit a bit as you go. Once the raspberries begin to release some juice and the sugar is starting to dissolve, scrape the berry mixture into a large skillet. Add the hot pepper.
Bring the jam to a boil over high heat, stirring regularly, until the berries break down and the syrup thickens. You should smell both the sweetness of the sugar and the heat of the pepper. It’s done when you pull a spatula through the jam and it doesn’t immediately rush in to fill the space you’ve cleared.
Remove the jam from the heat and fish out the spent habanero. Funnel into the prepared jars, leaving 1/2 inch of headspace. Wipe the rims, apply the lids and rings, and process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes.