Uncooked and Unsweetened “Preserves”

Appears in
On Food and Cooking

By Harold McGee

Published 2004

  • About
Modern preserve making has been transformed by the availability of concentrated pectin, extracted and purified from citrus and apple wastes, which can be added to any crushed fruit, cooked or not, to guarantee a firm gel. “Freezer jams” are made by loading up crushed fresh fruit with supplemental pectin and sugar, letting them sit for a day while the pectin molecules slowly form their network and form the gel, and then “preserving” them in the refrigerator or freezer (the uncooked fruit would otherwise soon be spoiled by sugar-tolerant molds and yeasts). Pectin is also used to make clear jelly candies and other confections.