Sweet Chilli Jam with Ginger

by Caryn Lawrence
Sweet Chilli Jam with Ginger

A sweet chilli jam that is made with red bell peppers, ginger and has a mild chilli burn. This jam is a perfect complement to cheeseboards, sandwiches, casseroles & stews.

When people hear about jam making, many do not think fondly about the idea, as it is way easier to go into a store and purchase a jar of jam rather than make it yourself. I speak from experience as it can be a time-consuming ordeal but this jam recipe is relatively quick and easy to make and I want to guarantee you that it is worth the effort. I have also not been able to find a sweet chilli jam with ginger like this one in stores in Cape Town and that makes the jam-making experience all the more worthwhile. Be assured that the taste of this jam far outweighs the effort that it takes to make. It is delicious served with cheese, cold meats and on sandwiches/burgers. I love adding it as an addition to certain main meals (stews, casseroles and curries), to add sweetness with a hint of burn.

Sweet-Chilli-Jam-served-in-a-jam-jar

A little background story

My adventures with this sweet chilli jam began one Saturday morning when I visited the Porterville area while enjoying a weekend away in the nearby vicinity. I purchased the most delicious sweet chilli jam (In case you did not know, I am a chilli lover) that I fell in love with. Porterville is around 2 hours drive from Cape Town so it is not feasible to travel there on a regular basis just to buy some jam and so I began experimenting with a homemade sweet chilli jam recipe. Most sweet chilli jam recipes that I came across in my research contained tomatoes, garlic and onion but I wanted to make one without any of those ingredients. In my experimenting, I used Sweet Chilli Jam by BBC Goodfood as a base recipe and then made the relevant adjustments until I was happy.

Sweet-Chilli-Jam-with-Ginger-Cooked

Pectin in jams

Now you may be asking yourself what is pectin? Without complicating things too much, pectin is a soluble fibre known as a polysaccharide that occurs naturally in the cell walls of fruits and vegetables and gives them their structure. When pectin is heated in the presence of a liquid, it expands and turns into a gel thus making it an essential ingredient in jam production, to thicken it. Fruits that are found to have particularly rich sources of pectin are apples and citrus fruits.

This jam is made from red peppers and chillies that contain relatively low levels of pectin and therefore pectin needs to be added to this recipe. In recent times I have been struggling to get my hands on apple pectin due to a stock shortage in Cape Town and therefore I used apples as a replacement for the pectin. You do this by taking 3 large apples (fuji/granny smith apples) and start by piercing the outer skin with a fork before adding them into the pot with the remainder of the jam ingredients. These apples will be removed and discarded before bottling.

Please note: If you would prefer to use pectin, then eliminate the apples from this recipe. You can use a jam sugar instead for this recipe made up of [15g Pectin + 985g = 1000g / 1kg]. Pectin requirements differ depending on the brand of pectin used so you will need to adjust the pectin and sugar ratios accordingly. When using this method the jam cooks for a shorter time, around 15 – 20 minutes.

Ingredients required

  • Chillies
  • Red Bell Peppers
  • Ginger
  • Sugar
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • White Vinegar
  • Apples (Fuji / Granny Smith)
  • Salt

Here are some helpful tips before starting

  • When making this jam, if you are one who loves things hot and prefer a hotter burn level, the chilli quantities in the recipe can be adjusted accordingly. Heat preference always differs from person to person but the below recipe produces a lovely jam with a mild chilli burn. I do advise that you taste as you go along to ensure that you reach the desired heat level.
  • I made use of cayenne chillies for this recipe but you can definitely replace it with another type of chilli.
  • If you are not a ginger lover you can eliminate the ginger portion and make a plain sweet chilli jam instead. I personally prefer it with the ginger as it adds another level of flavour to the jam.
  • Red peppers work best but if you can’t find sufficient red peppers, you can replace some with yellow or orange peppers.
  • I used the cold plate method to check that the jam is at the required thickness. Place a plate into the freezer at the beginning of your cooking time. Once the jam has reached the cooking time, spoon a little bit of jam onto the cold plate and return to the freezer for 2 minutes. Pull your finger through the jam and ensure that it does not flood back and fill the gap but rather gels and holds that shape.
  • If you prefer you can make use of a thermometer and cook the jam until it reaches a temperature of 105℃ / 220℉
Sweet-Chilli-Jam-In-Jars

Jam making steps

  1. Start by placing a side plate into the freezer, if using the cold plate method to check the required thickness of the jam.
  2. Sterilising the jars – There are various methods when it comes to this but I rinse the jars and lids with boiling water and then place the jars into a preheated oven at 160℃ for around 15 minutes. You can then turn off the oven and leave the jars in the oven until ready for use.
  1. Trim and deseed the red bell peppers and trim the chillies (I add some of the seeds of the chillies for added heat). Place the red bell peppers and chillies into a blender and process until chopped. Place all the ingredients – blended chilli & bell pepper mix, ginger, sugar, apple cider vinegar, white vinegar, apples and salt – into a heavy based pot over medium heat.
  2. Once the mixture begins to boil, bring to a rolling boil for around 30 – 35 minutes and stir occasionally.
  1. At around 30 minutes remove the cold side plate from the freezer and place a small amount of jam onto the plate. Place it into the freezer and wait 1 -2 minutes. Pull your finger through the jam and see if it is set. If you prefer the jam thicker, place it back on the heat and only boil for short intervals (around 5 minutes), as the jam can quickly become sticky, and then test again. Please note that upon cooling the jam will thicken further.
  2. If you are happy with the thickness of the jam, remove the apples from the jam.
  1. The jam is now ready for bottling, remove the jars from the oven and hot fill as this ensures a tight seal. Screw the lids on securely and allow them to cool completely.
  2. Serve as desired.

If you make this recipe, I would love to hear about it!

Please do leave a comment below

Thank you for reading, until next time, stay blessed!

Sweet Chilli Jam with Ginger
Print Recipe
4.67 from 12 votes

Sweet Chilli Jam with Ginger

A sweet chilli jam that is made with red bell peppers, ginger and has a mild chilli burn. This jam is a perfect complement to cheeseboards, sandwiches, casseroles & stews.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time55 mins
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: Jam & Condiments
Keyword: Charcuterie, Cheeseboard, Chilli, Ginger, Jam, Preserves
Servings: 5 Jars (250ml)

Ingredients

  • 500 Grams Red Bell Peppers
  • 10 – 15 Grams Cayenne Chillies
  • 1 Kilogram White Sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons Freshly Grated Ginger (Optional)
  • 3 Medium Apples (Fuji / Granny Smith) Pierce the outer skin using a fork
  • 250 ml Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 125 ml White Vinegar
  • ½ Teaspoon Salt

Instructions

  • Start by placing a side plate into the freezer, if using the cold plate method to check the required thickness of the jam at the end of cooking.
  • Sterilising the jars – There are various methods when it comes to this but I rinse the jars and lids with boiling water and then place the jars into a preheated oven at 160℃ for around 15 minutes. You can then turn off the oven and leave the jars in the oven until ready for use.
  • Trim and deseed the red bell peppers and trim the chillies (I add some of the seeds of the chillies for added heat). Place the red bell peppers and chillies into a blender and process until chopped.
    (This can be done by hand if you do not have a blender but PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH YOUR EYES)
    Place all the ingredients – blended chilli & bell pepper mix, ginger, sugar, apple cider vinegar, white vinegar, apples and salt – into a heavy-based pot over medium heat.
  • Once the mixture begins to boil, bring to a rolling boil for around 30 – 35 minutes and stir occasionally.
  • At around 30 minutes remove the cold side plate from the freezer and place a small amount of jam onto the plate. Place it into the freezer and wait 1 -2 minutes. Pull your finger through the jam and see if it is set. If you prefer the jam thicker, place it back on the heat and only boil for short intervals (around 5 minutes), as the jam can quickly become sticky, and then test again. Please note that upon cooling the jam will thicken further.
  • If you are happy with the thickness of the jam, remove the apples from the jam.
  • The jam is now ready for bottling, remove the jars from the oven and hot fill as this ensures a tight seal. Screw the lids on securely and allow them to cool completely.
  • Serve with cheese and cold meat platters or add to sandwiches for a delicious touch!

Notes

*Please note: If you would prefer to use pectin, then eliminate the apples from this recipe. You can use a jam sugar instead for this recipe made up of [15g Pectin + 985g = 1000g / 1kg]. Pectin requirements differ depending on the brand of pectin used so you will need to adjust the pectin and sugar ratios accordingly. When using this method the jam cooks for a shorter time, around 15 – 20 minutes. 
*Chilli quantity can be increased or decreased depending on the prefered heat levels.
 

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Sweet Chilli Jam with Ginger
Amount Per Serving
Calories 882 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Sodium 244mg11%
Potassium 402mg11%
Carbohydrates 223g74%
Fiber 5g21%
Sugar 216g240%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 3238IU65%
Vitamin C 140mg170%
Calcium 22mg2%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

This website provides approximate nutritional information for convenience and as a courtesy only.

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3 comments

Nicole 1 October, 2019 - 12:51 PM

This looks amazing!

Reply
Caryn Lawrence 1 October, 2019 - 9:14 PM

Thank you! You should give it a try 😉

Reply
Chicken and sweet potato stew - Life Inevitable 25 April, 2020 - 12:21 PM

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