Monday, October 25, 2010

Difference Between Fruit Butter and Jam?

Fruit Butter ~ Is a type of smooth, sweet, thick spread made from fruit stewed with spices and either mashed, pureed, or sieved.

Browning due to being in fridge a few days.

Fruit Jam ~ Is a type of fruit spread made with whole fruit that is cut into pieces and boiled with sugar to activate the natural fruit pectin until thick.

To further illustrate let's make some of each. First we need an abundance of fruit. I had a very generous person give me a large amount of bananas this last week, so lets use those.

Banana Butter

11 medium fully ripe bananas, might take more or less
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon fruit fresh or other brand, optional
6 cups of sugar
1 box Fruit Pectin
1/2 teaspoon unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Mash bananas really well in bowl. Measure out 4 cups of mashed fruit and then add to a 6 qt. heavy bottom sauce pan.

Measure and pour lemon juice and fruit preservative over bananas and stir well.

In separate bowl, measure out all the sugar and set aside.



Gather remaining ingredients. Measure and stir into sauce pan with bananas.

Stirring constantly, bring to a full rolling boil over high heat.

Add all of sugar at one time. Stirring well to incorporate.

 Bring back to a full rolling boil, and boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Skim foam off with spoon.


Ladle into hot sterile jars.  Wipe rims, add lids and rings, place into hot water boil bath. Process for 10 minutes. Adding additional minutes based on altitude. See canning book or website for exact times in higher altitudes.

Banana Jam

4 cups diced firm ripe bananas
1/4 cup lemon or lime juice
2 1/3 cups sugar
1/2 cup water

(I doubled this recipe for my batch)

Add lemon juice to bowl. Dice bananas right into the bowl. Stirring so juice coats fruit.

Measure water and sugar into saucepan. Stir until dissolved.

Bring to a full rolling boil. 

Cover for a minutes or so to let steam melt sugar from sides of pan.


Add bananas and juice. Bring back to a boil.

Boil on low heat for 30 minutes. Stirring regularly to keep from sticking to pan.

While waiting for fruit to cook down, take a break.
Just don't leave the kitchen.
Check and stir mixture often to keep from sticking to bottom of pan.


Boiling down. Remove from heat. Remove foam with spoon.

Ladle into hot sterile jars.

Wipe rims, add rings.

Place in hot water boil bath. Process for 10 minutes. Adding additional minutes for higher altitudes.

Remove from boil bath and allow to cool. Listen for the "ping" as each jar seals.
Banana Butter are the jars on the left. The butter is darker because of the added spices.
The Banana Jam are the jars on the right.

So there you have it.
The difference between Fruit Butters and Fruit Jams.
They are very similar. The process is the same for most fruits
even though recipes will be slightly different.

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