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Spiced Autumn Preserves

Spiced Autumn Preserves
Stephanie Stiavetti for NPR

Perfect for breakfast rolls or over ice cream, this recipe is a lovely way to hold on to late summer's deluge of fresh fruit while preparing for cold mornings. Because freezer jams are not sterilized, you cannot keep them at room temperature.

Makes enough to fill five 8-ounce jars

1 1/2 cups apples, peeled, cored and chopped

1 1/2 cups Asian apple pears, peeled, cored and chopped

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 cup plums, peeled and chopped

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

1 1/2 cups sugar, ideally superfine

Pectin of your choice (since it varies by brand, consult package for correct amount)

In a large bowl, crush apples and pears with a potato masher until they are about halfway pulverized. You should still have soft chunks of fruit, but nothing larger than a half-inch. Using a spoon, stir in lemon juice until it is well combined.

In another bowl, gently crush plums until they have a similar texture to the apples and pears. Pour plums into apple mixture and stir well with a spoon. Mix in cinnamon and cloves, stirring until completely incorporated.

Prepare sugar and pectin according to the package directions. When you mix the pectin into the fruit, make sure to stir for at least 3 minutes. Lumps are a common pitfall for beginning jam makers, and vigorous stirring will prevent them from forming.

Fill jars with jam, making sure to leave 3/4-inch at the top so that it can expand. Store in the freezer for as long as 6 months. Once jam is defrosted, it will keep up to a week in the refrigerator.

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