Wednesday, June 04, 2008

More Jam

 Abricot confiture, original watercolor
Back to Jam again.
Which entails looking first at French fraises or strawberries YUM!Strawberry confiture, original watercolor
I'm interested in the look of French jam as well as the taste..
 I've been researching how French jam got these little cloth hats.. By the way this jam is made by top pastry chef, Sadaharu Aoki. I've yet to find out but I did find instead that: Marmalade was created in 1561 by Mary, Queen of Scots' physician, when he mixed orange and crushed sugar to keep her seasickness at bay. And the feasts of Louis XIV always ended with marmalades and jellies served in silver dishes. The average US kid will eat 1,500 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches by high school graduation. Per capita consumption of jam in the US is approximately 2.2 pounds annually. Alfred Hitchcock loved French confiture of groiseilles so much, he had it flown to all his film locations so that his breakfast addiction could be satisfied. Even Marie-Antoinette was a jam addict, as were the Sun King and Victor Hugo.
I found plenty of French vocab for the jam lover:
Pots de Confiture
Confitures a l'Ancienne
Confitures maison
In France Christine Ferber is called "la fée des confitures" the jam fairy.
 My jam collection...none edible. All the jars are 1/2" high..ahem
Original Photo by Jennifer Anzures (Spunky) (c) 

I let out the call for more jam on Flickr, not being satisfied with just the 4 jars on the tray. Spunky Grind showed off her mini collection. They look real don't they?Spunkys Jams Spunky sent me her mini strawberry jam.If you have any 1/2" jars of jam around the house you could spare let out a shout. If you know why French jam jars wear hats PLEASE do let me know.


  1. Anonymous9:10 AM

    I know nothing of the origin of French jam hats but I had to run and yank out a jar of jam and eat breakfast all over again after drooling over this post..

  2. Anonymous10:19 AM

    Bonjour Carol,
    to answer your question about hats on jam jars, I googled with confiture pots chapeau and got this first hit but as cute as it was, there was no answer.

    Then in this text the little girl was in charge to wet the paper and stretch it on the glass jar before putting an elastic band around.
    That was a clue.
    Finally I got here where it is said to put covers OR waxed paper and elastic band on the jars.
    My conclusion - I am not an historian - is that paper or textile hats have been added on covers to get a look à l'ancienne. FWIW.
    Thanks, as always, for your delectable posts.

  3. Anonymous10:22 AM

    I enjoy Paris Breakfast each day, but today was jam day and I loved it. I have a business called Marmalady's which sells tea infused jams and jellies. Visit my website at
    I also love Paris and was inspired to start my business while in Paris several years ago. I will be there again in September and very much looking forward to the visit. Thanks for all you share each day!

    All the best,
    "The Marmalady"

  4. Anonymous10:47 AM

    British jams used to wear hats too, when I was a child all confiture did! I have been staying in Paris recently and had good reasons to mention your blog a couple of times, please pop over and visit. I hope your Zazzle items are going well. Very handsome.

  5. Don't know the reason for the Jam 'hats' but they are charming, especially in your paintings. :)
    Love the little minature jams. I thought they were real at first.

  6. I love all these jams! But, do you know my favorite one? The apricot jam homemade by my aunt! Of course, the packaging is not so nice, but the taste is so perfect!

  7. Anonymous12:52 PM

    So you're not alone PB.There's famous people who are jam addict too!LOL

  8. I know nothing of the history of the jam hat. But, on some instinctive level, it makes sense that French jam should have a hat. I think it is the way to gift wrap a jar of jam. One women would make jam and give it to her friends and they didn't have gift bags back in the olden days so she would put some pretty fabric on the jams's lid. Voila! Le Jam chapeau!!So ends my theorizing for the day.

  9. Love your postage stamps..very creative :-)

  10. My husband is the jam maker in our house and Saturday was Apricot Jam Day -- my favorite! (
    The idea to add the almond-like kernels from the apricot pits came from a French friend.

    ps: my roses stamps arrived this morning and they are spectacular. much more impressive in the flesh than on my computer screen. Gorgeous!

  11. Oooops I thought there was arsenic in Apricot kernals..?
    But if the French say so.

    Thanks Casey for purchasing the rose stamps! I have to get some myself :)

  12. Love your jam paintings, Carol! I don't know why they have the little hats, but I have always saved those for some reason--they sit in my drawer. I used to make my own jams and figured I'd re-use them on those, but then I never do put hats on mine. They look delicious, anyway! Sweet post! Couldn't see it til tonight since I'm off at a work retreat. Orange marmalade and strawberry and cherry anything are always my favorites...

  13. Anonymous10:37 PM

    Really, my favorite jam is wild blackberry. When the kids were little we lived in a place surrounded by wild blackberries that made the very best, most delicious jam EVER!
    Thanks for the memory

  14. I love the idea of the Jam Fairy! Hmmmm.... off to think on that mental image...

  15. The French jam pots wear hats because they are stylish.
    I really have no idea so you best just ignore me :)

  16. When I was young, my mother taught me to make jam, and rather than using fancy store-bought canning jars, we would use recycled jars and pour a little melted wax on the top of the cooled jam to seal the jar. We had to put lids or cloth hats on top, because the bugs would get stuck in the wax, which looked gross. I always assumed that the wax sealing method predated the fancy store-bought caning jar method.

  17. Anonymous7:38 PM

    Correction: It's cyanide in the seed in the peach pits or that's what I've always heard.
    We may be on the same wave length: I just got Mes Confitures (I've held out since it was published because I have no time to cook) and plan to peruse it tonight! Also forgot the Peches de vignes at La Maison de Chocolate! You must have distracted me!
    It's true that wax topping came first, so I bet Susan is right. Unfortunately the USDA no longer sanctions wax- topped jams:-(

  18. i love, love, love christine ferber and she is the fairy jam... wonderful!


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