Fortunately, I still have a tub of homemade pineapple jam leftover from last year! It is still good and moist and the flavour is still as strong as when it was freshly made! I had kept it in an air-tight container and stored it in the chiller compartment. Hence its freshness is well-preserved. This is a saver! I don't have to make any jam.
What did I do with the commercially produced jam? To discard would be a waste; To use it in my tarts, would be a waste of effort! Since my own jam has a good, strong natural pineapple flavour, I mixed it with the store-bought one! The result turned out good, a nice balance of sweetness and tartness as my own jam was not too sweet!
My Pineapple Jam Recipe:
10 pineapples (Usually I would use 5 ripe ones and 5 semi-ripe to get a stronger flavour)
1 1/2 kg coarse sugar (use more or less as preferred)
1 6-cm cinnamon stick
Remove skin and 'eyes' of pineapples. The vendor will only remove the skin but not all the 'eyes'. You have to remove the eyes if you want a nice jam without any blemish, i.e. little black dots. Remove the hard centre before grating or chopping.
You may squeeze out some of the juice using a muslin cloth. Don't discard the juice. Use it to make a pineapple drink. It's very refreshing!
Next, place the grated pineapple, sugar and cinnamon stick in a big pot. Using a big pot is easier to cook and spread the jam out. Cook on high heat to bring the mixture to a boil, stirring frequently initially. Once the mixture is bubbling, lower the heat to medium low, to simmer. At this stage, more frequent stirring is required to ensure the jam does not burn. Burnt jam tastes bitter. You can taste the jam to check for the sweetness. Add more sugar if required.
As the jam starts to dry up, stirring has be continuous. To test if the jam is ready, scoop a teaspoon of jam and place it in the fridge to cool it quickly. Once cooled, roll the jam to check if it's too soft or watery. Continue cooking until you get the consistency required. Be careful not to cook it too dry. If the jam is too dry and 'hard' to the touch, it will not be suitable for open tarts. The jam will dry further during baking and will harden and you will end up with hard pineapple tarts! The whole cooking process for this amount of jam will take about 3 hours. If less pineapples are used, the cooking process is shorter.
I used honey pineapples as the other types available were unripe at the store I frequent.
They cost slightly more but I have no regrets as they were flavourful!