Low sugar jam

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Freddie
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Low sugar jam

Postby Freddie » 29 Jan 2018, 5:16pm

Anyone have any low sugar varieties of strawberry jam they can recommend? I bought some low sugar (42g per 100g, rather than the usual 60g per 100g :shock:) and it was still excessively sweet. I reckon a more sensible ratio would be half that again, 20g of sugar per 100g.

It is more expensive to fill a jar with fruit than sugar, but apparently you can use a type of pectin that works with a low sugar ratio these days, so I don't see the point of all the sugar, save cost (at what price to health).

I'd prefer to stay away from artificially sweetened stuff and don't think sugar outright is the enemy. It's just that far too much food has far too high proportions of the stuff (there are very few cakes and ice creams I eat now for the same problem).

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Mick F
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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby Mick F » 29 Jan 2018, 5:31pm

Mrs Mick F is the Jam Queen.
Just been in conversation with her regarding your question.

Pectin can be got from apple or lemon pips for instance, and she never uses commercial pectin. :shock:
Pectin is required as a setting agent, and strawberries are very low in pectin.
Sugar is a preservative, and little to do with setting.

If you can't make your own jam, maybe buy diabetic strawberry jam but they'll be sweet with saccharin instead.
Buy a Conserve - higher in fruit and lower in sugar.
Mick F. Cornwall

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Graham
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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby Graham » 29 Jan 2018, 5:35pm

The lower the sugar, the quicker that the mould & bugs get established.
Best to strike a balance.

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661-Pete
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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby 661-Pete » 29 Jan 2018, 5:39pm

Difficult one to answer... especially if there are children in your household (there aren't in ours).

My way out of this dilemma (yes I have the same problem!) is to turn away from jam or marmalade altogether. I go for hummous or similar stuff - still got fat and sugar in them, but far less of the sweet stuff. Perhaps bread and jam once a month or thereabouts, if I happen to run out of other things.

So: is it worth having a think about what occasions you need to have jam on the table? And what could substitute?
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Freddie
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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby Freddie » 29 Jan 2018, 6:00pm

Mick F wrote:Pectin can be got from apple or lemon pips for instance, and she never uses commercial pectin.
Pectin is required as a setting agent, and strawberries are very low in pectin.
Sugar is a preservative, and little to do with setting.
Is Mrs F completely sure. I read online that you need a certain amount of sugar to get a jam like quality, rather than a sauce quality, unless you use a certain type of pectin? This information could well be wrong though, I am only relaying what I remember reading (hopefully correctly). There would be no surprise if Mrs F is correct.

As for making jam, well, I eat it so infrequently and it is yet another thing to (attempt to) make because the stuff in the shops is unpalatable... :evil:
Graham wrote:The lower the sugar, the quicker that the mould & bugs get established.
Best to strike a balance.
True, Graham, but apparently jam (of typical sugar/fruit ratio) is fine outside the fridge for six months:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/artic ... e-you.html

So I imagine that a low sugar jam would be fine inside the fridge for a month or three.

661-Pete wrote:Perhaps bread and jam once a month or thereabouts, if I happen to run out of other things.
It was the first jar I have bought in maybe as much as two years. I remember the previous, typical ratio jam, gave me a terrible buzz from the high sugar amount so I sought out the lowest sugar one (even looked amongst the preserves); with just a scraping on toast it was too much.

A small sized dollop in some rice pudding (another thing on the borders of being too sweet), which I find a bit plain on its own, and it was just too much.

I can't help but think we have much too much of a sweet tooth in this country and this is driving overeating. For example, I have some relatively creamy, lowish sugar ice cream in the freezer. It is very satisfying and I only need two or three flat desertspoons for taste. If I consume a more sugary ice cream (or, in fact, any product with high amounts of sugar), I find I am driven to eat much more of it in a search for 'the taste', which inevitably doesn't arrive; a sensible amount is never enough and any taste (or the lack thereof) is masked by the excess sugar.

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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby Vorpal » 29 Jan 2018, 6:10pm

One of the reasons jam has sugar is that it is used as a preservative. It doesn't need to be so much, of course.

I buy frozen fruit, and if I remember, I just leave a serving out overnight. If I don't remember, I thaw it in the microwave.

I use the thawed frozen fruit where most people would use jam, on waffles and pancakes, and other things. Though, I don't like anything but butter on toast.
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brynpoeth
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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby brynpoeth » 29 Jan 2018, 6:24pm

Fruit puree might be an alternative
Rhubarb 90% fruit
Apple 92% fruit

One could use jam and dilute it, dried apple rings are tasty

I would apply the motto of a well-known food store: 'try something new today', see what is on the shelves, try wholefood stores, drugstores..
Last edited by brynpoeth on 29 Jan 2018, 7:28pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Mick F
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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby Mick F » 29 Jan 2018, 6:27pm

There's not enough sugar in strawberries to give preservative, but adding sugar does.
Pectin doesn't need added sugar to thicken a jam.
Sugar is needed to preserve it, not thicken it.

As far as Mrs Mick F is concerned, she has never ever heard or read of anyone saying that added sugar is needed to make pectin work.
She says she'll look into it.
Mick F. Cornwall

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Paulatic
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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby Paulatic » 29 Jan 2018, 6:30pm

Back in my day of a diet mostly made of Cranks recipes, (omg was that really 40+ yrs ago) I’m sure I made some jam then replacing granulated sugar with apple juice. Which is sugar in a different form.
All our jams are homemade and find you can get away with less sugar than the normal equal weights. Strawberry is a little special though and the only one I’ll often buy proper preserving sugar for.
Haven’t bought commercial jam for 40 yrs but whenever I’ve sampled it in cafes etc it always tastes very sweet and don’t the ingredients often state glucose or is that just marmalade?
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brynpoeth
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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby brynpoeth » 29 Jan 2018, 6:36pm

Honey is an alternative to jam, a natural product but does contain a lot of sugar I think

Germany has 3000 types of bread, an expert said it is best with butter only

It is worth making ones own jam (or bread) for several reasons: one knows what goes into it, can experiment with less sugar, other ingredients, experimenting and learning is good. Tastes better too
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661-Pete
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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby 661-Pete » 29 Jan 2018, 6:44pm

brynpoeth wrote:Germany has 3000 types of bread, an expert said it is best with butter only
Very true. Not too much butter though!

But you don't need to travel that far: we make five different varieties of bread here at home (six if you include the chapatis I sometimes make to go with the curry). And not one of them has been anywhere near Chorleywood (says he with snob's hat firmly on head)...
Suppose that this room is a lift. The support breaks and down we go with ever-increasing velocity.
Let us pass the time by performing physical experiments...
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brynpoeth
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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby brynpoeth » 29 Jan 2018, 6:47pm

661-Pete wrote:
brynpoeth wrote:Germany has 3000 types of bread, an expert said it is best with butter only
Very true. Not too much butter though!

But you don't need to travel that far: we make five different varieties of bread here at home (six if you include the chapatis I sometimes make to go with the curry). And not one of them has been anywhere near Chorleywood (says he with snob's hat firmly on head)...


Only six? :wink:
Would you care to describe them briefly?
I am going to a lecture about bakehouses next week, will report back
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rjb
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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby rjb » 29 Jan 2018, 7:24pm

I made some bramble jelly last year using the BBC good food recipe. I entered a jar in the village show and won 1st prize. :D not bad for a first attempt at jam making. The village WI members weren't happy :(
https://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/bramblejelly_13698
Easy to make and I strained it through a kitchen stainless sieve as I didn't have a muslin bag. Keeps ok in the kitchen cupboard if not opened. Once opened it keeps ok for a month in the cupboard and will keep for longer in the fridge but I haven't tested it for that long as it gets consumed. Yum :lol:
Last edited by rjb on 29 Jan 2018, 8:18pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Psamathe
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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby Psamathe » 29 Jan 2018, 7:27pm

I like Waitrose own brand "Essential" low sugar strawberry (don't like their other flavours
https://www.waitrose.com/ecom/products/waitrose-reduced-sugar-strawberry-jam/074749-37922-37923

But it's at 44g sugar per 100g ...

But I'm not a great jam connoisseur so whilst I like it I've not compared to others available and I'm sure not everybody would agree.

Ian

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Re: Low sugar jam

Postby bogmyrtle » 29 Jan 2018, 9:17pm

Diabetic jam or fruit spreads?
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