Just lately I discovered the amazing blog Like a strawberry milk of Fanny. I immediatly fell in love with her dreamy pictures, her bloomy imaginative writting, her unique recipes, her adorable illustration… You must stop by at her blog!
It was there that I saw this recipe for cucumber jam. Cucumber jam? I had never heard about that and was curious. While grating the cucumber for my first batch and smelling the fresh cucumber, it came to my mind that melon would be a great addition. And I was reminded of the perfume of my youth: “Cool Water Woman”. So, cucumber was paired with Galia melon, the flavour completed by sweet vanilla and a hint of fresh mint. Imagine the sea, the sound of braking waves, the warmth of the sun on your skin, cooled down by a light and fresh breeze from the sea… and now imagine having this taste and feeling just on your breakfast bun (Cream cheese makes a perfect combination). It’s like a day at the beach!
Like Fanny I appreciate the comfort of jam sugar, basically sugar with pektin, citric acid and sometimes preservative agent added. I prefer 3:1 jam sugar, which means that for 3 parts of fruit you have to add 1 part of sugar (in weight). Thanks to the pektin you don’t need the usual 1:1 ratio – a sugar overkill for my taste buds – and end up instead with a very fruity (or berry or veggy) jam. Thanks to the preservative agent you can keep your jam as long as the normal one.
adapted with some major modifications from Fannys recipe
1 cucumber (about 250-300 g), 1/2 Galia melon (about 400-500 g, you could as well use cantaloupe or honeydew), 1/2 teaspoon vanilla seeds, 1/2 tablespoon finely chopped mint, 250 g 3:1 jam sugar (see my notes on jam sugar above), 1 additional teaspoon citric acid (optional to your taste)
Peel cucumber and half melon. Remove seeds and grate finely into a big pot. Weight cucumber-melon-mixture. Divide by three and add this amount of 3:1 jam sugar (in weight). The final weight I came out with was 750 g, so I added 250 g of sugar. Add vanilla seeds and mint and marinate for 2 hours.
Over high heat, bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Drop a bit of jam on small plate, cool and down and check if it is already gelling. If not, cook for a few more minutes. Fill into sterilized jars, close lid and let cool upside-down. Chill and spread on your bun, croissant,… together with some cream cheese.