I live a luxuriously slow life. Don’t get me wrong; you will see me puttering around Rome as fast as my short legs will carry me and I will screen your calls when I am overwhelmed with work and frantic emails. Still, generally speaking, my days begin with a warm cup of delicious coffee sipped slowly as I browse celebrity gossip websites and listen to FM 105.6 Rete Sport, humming along to the Infissi Nettunense theme song (don’t you just love that song?!). Also, most recently, FB and I have become proud parents to a tiny green caterpillar (more specifically, Cabbage Looper or Trichoplusia ni) who has eaten her way through my window sill shiso plant and bed of celery leaves which I laid out for her. Every morning and afternoon for the past five days, I have spent a good few minutes observing her busy munching and my heart swells with pride for little Catherine the Caterpillar, who we expect will become a gorgeous hairy moth in a week or so. And thus is my luxurious slow-life.
As an extension of this, I’ve recently taken to making jam on the weekends. I’ll be the first to admit I’m not a huge fan of marmalade myself, but there is something so soothing and calming about cooking fruit in sugar that I just can’t help myself. Plums, kaki, oranges – you name it.
My first go at jam-making (jamming?) was with plums from Maria’s stand. Very nice. I found the easiest recipe I could online that doesn’t require pectin – I’ve also since discovered that plums, like apples, contain a lot of natural pectin – and laughed with glee (glee!) as my kitchen quickly was engulfed in a sultry cloud of fruity-sugary goodness. Voilà!
2 cups chopped plums
3/4 cup sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
Cook plums and lemon juice on medium heat for about 5 minutes, add sugar and stir. Cook for another 15-20 minutes until the consistency of the jam resembles thick honey. Skim off the foam, remove from heat, and let cool.