Dried apricots are my favourite dried fruit. It is at the top of my list for dried fruits. I always have a packet of dried apricots in my pantry. There's something about them, pop one in the mouth and you'll reach for another one. I love the tangy sourish sweet taste and the unmistakenly wonderful smell of apricots!
I love their vibrant, cheerful, happy yellow, colour of sunshine brightness! When I came across this recipe for Apricot and Ginger Conserve over at Rebecka's blog from At Home With Rebecka, I really wanted to make this. Rebecka uses fresh apricots! How I would love to have fresh apricots, but they do cost a bundle over here! Rebecka advises me to use dried apricots instead, and I did! These Apricot and Ginger Conserve turns out to be so good! Rebecka even added dried mangoes for extra flavour. I did not since I can't find any!
Since I use the Dried Apricots instead of the fresh ones, I cut them in half and soak them in unsweetened apple juice for about 8 hours, to plump them up first. Then I cooked them as per Rebecka's instructions. I did not use any pectin for these as the conserve set up rather well. Now what is a conserve? I get confused sometimes over conserve, jam and preserve. As what I understood from "Homemade Preserves" by Maggie Mayhew, a brief explanation, "These are similar to jams, but they have a slightly softer set and contain whole or large pieces of fruit".
These are what I got from the three cups of dried apricots. I used my recycle bottles from the mayonnaise and pasta sauces that I bought, so the sizes varies. All in, estimated yield, about 4 bottles of 250ml sizes.
These are really good, the chunky pieces of apricots and the sliced candied ginger are full of flavour.
Guess where this spoonful end up after taking this photo? Mmmm.... delicious!!
Hop over to At Home With Rebecka for the full recipe and read a charming childhood story of how Rebecka and her brothers used to go berry-picking for her mom. I love reading stories like this!
Since I used the dried apricots, I did a little adjustments. Here's my recipe :
Dried Apricots and Ginger Conserve
(source from At Home With Rebecka, with slight adjustments. For the original recipe that calls for Fresh Apricots, please visit Rebecka's blog, I think using Fresh Apricots will be more flavourful!)
3 cups dried apricots, cut to half
3 cups unsweetened apple juice
1/4 orange juice
juice from half of one small lemon
1 tsp grated orange zest
1 tsp grated lemon zest
1/3 cup candied ginger, sliced
1/2 cup sugar
- Slice dried apricots in half. Place in a bowl and add the rest of the ingredients except candied ginger and sugar. Leave aside, covered, for about 8 hours.
- Transfer contents into a deep saucepan, add in candied ginger and simmer slowly until apricots are tender. Stir frequently and when apricots are soft but not mushy (as this is a conserve), add in sugar.
- Cook until sugar melts and mixture is thick.
- Remove from heat and pour into prepared sterilized jars and seal. Enjoy!
This is one delicious tasty conserve that I'll be making again. The addition of candied ginger is really fabulous! Thank you, Rebecka for this wonderful recipe!