I love the philosophies of jam.  By ‘philosophies’ I refer to the hard-line rules (perhaps they are as rigid as ethics) that each of us have around what makes a great jam.  Many prioritize the consistency or set of a jam while others may emphasize taste or texture.

I am less conventional.  I am perfectly willing to deal with runny jam that borders on syrup in favour of flavor.  For those interested in why, there’s 3 previous pieces that summarize my stance pretty well here:

  • Guided by a Sense of Terroir (and not terror)
    The concept of Terroir within cooking really hit home with me in 2010.  Although I had been using the concept of cooking from my local pallete and what is available around me, my efforts in changing my style of cooking to reflect the area I live have dramatically increased since then.  I feel like I am chasing Terroir and joining the conversation that is happening around our area to define “What is local cuisine?”  This is especially fascinating to me in a city as multicultural as Toronto.
  • What Have I got Against Pectin?
    My initial thoughts on why I avoid commercial pectin and an easy experiment for those of you who use it.
  • More Thoughts on Avoiding Pectin
    I’m not an avid anti-pectin person but I did want to share more of my thoughts about it.  :).

All of that is a very long way to say that this jam can be runny.  It’s relatively low sugar, doesn’t have added pectin and adds maple syrup.  All of that generally leads to a very, very loose set – but something that really tastes of its ingredients, of the area and isn’t overtly sweet.  This tastes like it’s core ingredients – wild blueberries and maple syrup.

This is a great ingredient for baking, pancakes, ice cream, smoothies or, my favourite use, as a cheese topping for goat cheese (chevre).  It’s mad-good with cheese.


  • 6 Cups Blueberries
  • 3 Cups Brown Sugar
  • 1 Cup Maple Syrup
  • 1/3 Cup Bottled Lemon Juice (use the bottled stuff to be sure of the acidity).

Note: you could get a tighter set by not using maple syrup and using 2 cups of brown sugar and 2 cups of maple sugar.


Yield: 4-5 1-cup jars.

  1. Place berries in a wide pan.
  2. Crush berries with a potato masher.
  3. Add lemon, sugar and syrup, stir well.
  4. Let rest for an hour.
  5. Bring to a simmer over medium heat.  Stir frequently until jam is set – about 20 minutes after it starts boiling.
  6. Skim foam, pour into sterilized 1-cup (half-pint or 250 ml) jars and process in a hot water bath for 10 minutes.

This is a magical taste of late summer and something I just simply adore.

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