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Kings Mountain, North Carolina, United States
"A mind lively and at ease" is a blog by a first-generation Russian-Ukrainian immigrant Maria K. (Maria Igorevna Kuroshchepova). An engineer by education, an analyst by trade, as well as a writer, photographer, artist and amateur model, Maria brings her talent for weaving an engaging narrative to stories of life, fashion and style advice, book and movie reviews, and common-sense and to-the-point essays on politics and economy.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Mama Masha's classics - eggplant jam

When I was little, I hated eggplant. I can't imagine it now, because I love it so much. However, while I came to love eggplant as both a side and a main course ingredient, I did not realize it can be a part of one's dessert until a couple of years ago. Here is a fairly simple recipe of eggplant jam. You'll just have to take my word for it - it's delicious and goes great with toast, pancakes and anything else you like to put jam on.


3 large eggplants

4 cups sugar

Zest of 1 lemon (optional)

1/4 cup lemon juice

1 teaspoon grated ginger

2 tablespoons honey


- Peel the eggplants and cut into half-inch cubes. Put them in a colander over a large bowl or kitchen sink and sprinkle with sugar to juice. Leave for 1 hour.

- After 1 hour, boil water and pour over the eggplant cubes to blanch and take out the rest of the bitterness.

- In a deep pan, combine the eggplant and the sugar. Stir to make sure the eggplant cubes are evenly covered with sugar and let sit for another 2 hours. Stir it from time to time. By the end of 2 hours, most of the sugar should be dissolved.

- Add lemon zest, lemon juice and ginger to the eggplant and sugar mix. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently but carefully, until the mixture starts thickening. I usually bring it up to a gentle boil, then down to medium-low two or three times.

- Add the honey and stir it in. Move the pan off the heat.

- From this point on, you can follow the standard process for sterilizing jars and closing up your jam for later. Add a little citric acid on top of the jam in each jar to reduce the possibility of bacteria. Vacuum seal.

Possible additives (not all of them together - one at a time, and not in any large amounts - no more than half a tea spoon):

- rosemary

- mint

- cayenne pepper

- ground nutmeg

- cinnamon

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