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I love to make jam and I love all things porky so when I was searching for how to prepare baby back ribs for New Year’s Eve, I was delighted to find a recipe online that combined two of my loves Apricot and Rosemary Oven Ribs .

While Ms. Saretsky’s recipe couldn’t be easier. I took liberties with both ingredients and cooking method, using Ms. Saretsky’s recipe as a template as I often do.

I have to say, the ribs, cooked low and slow in the oven and then glazed and baked for a short while at a higher heat were phenomenal. Tangy, sweet, lightly sour, tender and delicious. Falling off the bone easily with a gentle tug between the teeth. We are going to love tucking into them as leftovers.

Apricot and Rosemary Oven Ribs

6 pounds pork baby back ribs cut into single ribs
2 cups apricot jam
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
4-5 sprigs of rosemary
1/3 cup olive oil
10 cloves of smashed garlic
generous pinch of kosher salt and freshly grated black pepper

Mix all marinade ingredients and pour over ribs in a large, deep bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 275 degrees.
Spread ribs out on to one or two 9 x 13″ baking dishes. I used two to give my ribs room. Evenly distribute the remaining marinade, cover the ribs with foil, pop them in the oven and ignore them for the next 2 hours. At 2 hours check the ribs for tenderness. I let mine go 30 minutes more at which point I removed the ribs from the oven and poured off and discarded all of the accumulated juices. Trust me, it was mostly fat. A lot of fat.
Raise the oven temperature to 350 degrees.
Put the ribs back in the baking dishes and brush generously with an additional 1 cup of apricot jam.
Pop the ribs back in the oven, uncovered for 15-20 minutes more, just until the jam thickens up and the ribs start to get sticky.

I worried that all of the jam would make the ribs too sweet but since I was using homemade jam and I tend to make low sugar jams, it wasn’t a problem. The sweetness of the jam is balanced by the tang of the vinegar and the garlic.

So, so good.

Porky deliciousness

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I won’t presume to offer apologies for my teensy delay in blog posts because that would assume that anyone missed me. Instead I am going to jump back in to blogging with one of my very most favorite things to do. Make jam.

Have you ever made jam? To me, jam is the art of taking some fruit, adding sugar, maybe some herbs or spices if you’re fancy like that and cooking it until it is somehow better than and reminiscent of that fruit at its sweetest peak. And opening a jar of home canned strawberry jam on the coldest January morning? There is nothing better. Unless, of course, you are opening a jar of concord grape jam.

I don’t do things small. When I set out to make jam, I make a ton of jam. For this day of jam making I started with 10 quarts of luscious concord grapes.

10 quarts is a lot of grapes. But jam doesn’t like to be made in huge batches.  For safest results, jam should be cooked in small batches according to proven recipes. For these batches of jam, I used a recipe from Epicurious

http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Concord-Grape-Jam-232813

It’s super easy to make although it is time consuming. Slipping the skins off of 10 quarts of grapes takes a while. It goes a lot faster with a friend…or a very patient boyfriend. Music helps. Alcohol helps more.

I’m thinking this should be the last of my jam making for this season. I’ve made a lot of jam this season. So far my cupboard contains:

Concord Grape Jam

Strawberry Jam

Strawberry Vanilla Jam

Strawberry Peach Jam

Peach Jam

Peach Ginger Jam

Cherry Jelly

Rhubarb Jam

Apricot Jam

Apricot Champagne Jam

Spiced Apricot Jam

Apricot Vanilla

I’m a little sad I never got to make raspberry jam but I’m thinking that we will not want for jam this winter.
How about you, have you made jam? What is your favorite kind of jam?

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