St Antonin is a smallish and rather picturesque town in the region. We dropped into the weekly market to see what the local producers had to offer. Amongst the large amount of excellent looking veg, cheese and charcuterie we spotted a stand of punnets of multicoloured chillis (picture below).
Without question, they demanded to be purchased and turned into some kind of rainbow chilli death jam.
The results were pleasing, although the end colour was a little more uniformly red than I had hoped for - guess we can't really call it rainbow death jam.
The chilli jam recipe was based rather heavily on Nigella's but slightly amended to up the heat. The use of jam sugar (with pectin added) makes the whole process fairly easy. There's an obvious question though, what exactly do you do with chilli jam? I'm not quite sure what the answer is, but we seem to have got through nearly all of it already. Try it with cheese, with burgers, with curry, just on toast or out of the jar - it's surprisingly moreish.
125g red and green pepper
500g jam sugar
500ml cider vinegar (you probably won't need it all)
Enough sealable, sterilised jars to handle up to 750ml of jam
- Make sure that you know what you're doing with your sterilised jars, they need to be ready about 30 - 45 minutes after you start.
- Pick your chillis and roughly chop and deseed them. As tempting as it is to leave the seeds in, it will detract from the look of the jam (I know this to my cost). If you want to heat up the jam, change the ratio of the chilli to pepper.
- Similarly chop and deseed the peppers and put them in a blender with the chillis.
- In a big pan, dissolve the sugar in 300ml of the vinegar over a medium heat, once dissolved, add the chopped chillis and peppers and put up the heat for a serious boil for 10 minutes or so.
- Beware of this bit, it carries serious risk of tongue burning. Take some out on a spoon and let it cool (make sure it's cool!) now taste it. The sugar/vinegar balance needs to be right, when I followed Nigella with a 1:1 mix, it seemed overly sweet and needed a bit of a boost to the sourness. Add some vinegar to correct the balance. Potentially you could add some more chilli if you need to boost the heat.
- Let the jam cool a little and jar it up.
- When it's cooled completely crack open a jar and tuck in.