What’s the deal with pectin?

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What's the deal with pectin?

Some jams are jammier than others, and it all comes down to pectin, a naturally occurring starch.

Quite simply, pectin is what gives fruit its shape.

Firm fruit – think apples and citrus – contain high amounts of pectin, while soft fruit (and very ripe fruit), such as raspberries and strawberries, contain less.

It’s also what makes jams thicken and set when cooked to high temperatures with the addition of sugar and acid (usually lemon juice).

You may have seen jam sugar, which is sugar with added pectin, that you can use for fruit that’s slightly lacking, or you can combine high- and low-pectin fruit to get the right consistency.

Consult the following list before you start jamming.

High-pectin fruit
Under-ripe apples, cranberries, lemons and limes, gooseberries and plums

Low-pectin fruit
Apricots, pears, guavas, strawberries and raspberries

Browse more preserve recipes here.

TASTE Article by: TASTE

The TASTE team is a happy bunch of keen cooks and writers, always on the look out for the next food trend or the next piece of cake.

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