June 3, 2017

Making Ume Syrup and Ume Jam/梅シロップと梅ジャムを作る

Today, my father and I picked up ao (lit. blue, unripe) ume from the two Nanko ume trees in my father's farmland. He says the ume trees are at least 15 years old. Nanko is the most popular variety of ume in Japan.

To make ume syrup and ume jam, I used this recipe, which I created last year.

10 kg ao ume
青梅10 kg

It took me more than one hour and a half to remove the heta (calyx) from each and every ume.

Each of the 5-liter Tupperware container contains 2.5 kg ume.
5リットルのタッパー容器にはそれぞれ、梅が2.5 kg入っています。
5 kg sugar (cheap shiro zato, also called johaku to):
砂糖(安い白砂糖(上白糖とも言う)5 kg:
First put half the ume in the container, add half the sugar,
add the other half ume, and add the other half sugar.
Put the lid on the container and shake the container slightly.

To be continued.

Edited to add on July 6:

On the evening of July 5:
On the morning of July 6:
I have shaken each container for more than ten times in total so far.

Around noon, I came up with another idea: Remove the lid and stir with a large spoon.

I think this is much better than shaking the whole container.

I tasted the syrup in each container. I found it was not sour enough yet.

To be continued.

Edited to add on June 9:

Ume on June 8:

I tasted the syrup, and found it was now sour!

The ume in one of the containers are slightly bubbling. Maybe a sign of fermentation.
I decided to separate the syrup from the ume the next day (June 9).

Edited to add on June 10:

I was unable to separate the syrup from the ume on June 9.

On July 10, I thought I had to do this because the ume showed clear signs of fermentation.
The ume are bubbling.
I separate the syrup from the ume, using a colander. I didn't bother to strain the syrup. Last time when I tried to strain it using a paper towel, I failed because the syrup would not pass through the paper towel due to tiny bubbles.
I first microwaved the ume in each container for 6 minutes.
I put one half the ume in the container (one-fourth the total ume) in an enameled pot, added 250 g of sugar and 100 ml of water. Heat over medium heat until a boil, stirring with a wooden spatula occasionally. Turn the heat to low, stir constantly for 2-3 minutes until the ume turns into a paste.
容器の梅の半分(全部の梅の1/4)をホーロー鍋に入れ、砂糖を250 g、水を100 ml入れました。沸騰するまでは中火で、時折、木製のヘラで混ぜます。それから、弱火にして、2、3分、梅がペースト状になるまで、ヘラでかき混ぜ続けます。
Remove the seeds, if you want to.

The next step is sterilize the syrup by heating in an attempt to stop fermentation.
Heat for several minutes at around 80 degrees C. Never bring to a boil.

From 10 kg of ume and 5 + 1 = 6 kg sugar, I made more than 8 liters of ume syrup and more than 6 kg of ume jam.
梅10 kg、砂糖5 + 1 = 6 kgから、梅シロップが8リットル以上、梅ジャムが6キロ以上できました。


Fräulein Trude said...

6 kg of jam, are you going to share the lot with family and friends? I always cook way too much quince jelly and than I trade some jars. For example 6 jars for 2 kg venison. Quite a good deal.

Hiroyuki said...

I will send all the syrup and jam to my wife today. My children love the ume syrup (but not the jam), and my wife like them both. The small PET bottle and the small Tuppware container in the photos are for a friend of mine. My parents said they didn't want them.

My father and I are going to collect ripe ume from the two ume trees soon to make umeboshi this time. I hope I can make some more syrup and jam using some of the ripe ume.

Hiroyuki said...

Kiki: Oh, I forgot to tell you. I have already sent my wife 12 kg of ao ume, and she is making ume syrup and ume jam by following my recipe.

fiasseP said...

is there any reason why syrup making process doesn't involve cooking/heating the fruit?
does it change the taste or just to avoid hassles for straining the syrup from the flesh?
anyway, I never taste unripe ume / jam neither the syrup :)

Hiroyuki said...

fiasseP: That's a good question! There ARE recipes involving heating, using a rice cooker. I think I'll try one of such recipes if I can get unripe ume.