Tuesday, 18 November 2008

On your morning toast, a scone at high tea, or paired with peanut butter, jam is a sweet tooth sensation. Since making your own jam isnít often an option, we learn some tips on how to pick a good jam at the supermarket.


The Basics

  • Not all fruity toppings in a jar are actually jam:

    • Jam has a relatively smooth consistent texture.

    • A preserve is lumpier with visible pieces of fruit.

    • A spread made from pureed fruit, is not as solid as jam, and may or may not have any sugar in it.

    • Marmalade is made from citrus fruit and always has pieces of citrus peel.

    • Jelly is made from fruit juice, not the fruit itself.

  • The best jams are often from Britain, France, Italy and Switzerland.

  • Most jams are more than 50% sugar and 50-70 calories per teaspoon.

  • Some jams use white grape juice as a lower calorie sweetener. But while it may have fewer calories, the grape juice competes with the flavour of the fruit.


We tested these four raspberry jams with some discerning, die-hard homemade jam connoisseurs:

  • President’s Choice: $0.92 /100 ml
  • Smucker’s: $1.60/100 ml
  • Bonne Maman: $1.84/100 ml
  • Wilkin & Sons: $2.72/100 ml

Taste Test

  • The British Wilkin & Sons was unremarkable.

  • Smucker’s had lots of raspberry flavour and 50% less sugar than its regular jam. It was also surprisingly tasty.

  • Bonne Maman was too sweet and didn't have enough fruit taste.

  • President’s Choice containing over 50% fruit and had a great raspberry taste.


President’s Choice brand is our raspberry jam top pick, with over 50% fruit and a flavourful raspberry taste.

   Thanks to Our Experts

Linda Meinhardt, Gourmet Grocer

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