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Using Agave Syrup in Making Preserves?

OCEllen Apr 4, 2008 05:50 PM

Has anyone done this? I'm thinking of doing up kumquats from my tree in agave syrup instead of sugar this spring.

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  1. paulj RE: OCEllen Apr 4, 2008 09:12 PM

    How have you used sugar in the past?

    2 Replies
    1. re: paulj
      OCEllen RE: paulj Apr 4, 2008 11:27 PM

      Yes, a sugar water syrup, cooked down a bit and then adding the kumquats and cooking until they were translucent, then jarring them and processing for 12 mins.

      1. re: OCEllen
        MakingSense RE: OCEllen Apr 5, 2008 10:39 PM

        Agave syrup is made the same way corn syrup is - using heat to hydolize carbohydrates into sugars. It doesn't react well to further heating.
        You may want to check recipes for "freezer jam" so that you heat the product made with agave as little as possible and skip the water bath processing.
        Perhaps you can keep the temperature very low, barely simmering the fruit until it cooks through. I think I remember reading that agave syrup shouldn't be heated above 180 degrees but I could be wrong on that.
        Since you're making such small batches, you can use half and freeze half.
        Good luck with your experiment. With the cost of agave syrup, these will be really luxury preserves!!

    2. Ruth Lafler RE: OCEllen Apr 4, 2008 09:35 PM

      A liquid sweetener isn't going to set up the same way sugar will. You might have to experiment with adding pectin.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Ruth Lafler
        OCEllen RE: Ruth Lafler Apr 4, 2008 11:28 PM

        I may experiment with two small batches.

        1. re: Ruth Lafler
          OCEllen RE: Ruth Lafler Apr 8, 2008 11:07 AM

          It worked just fine for the kumquats - I did add a little sugar, too. I didn't want or expect it to set up like a jelly or jam - the syrup will have many delicious uses!

        2. sarah galvin RE: OCEllen Apr 5, 2008 10:46 PM

          You who have these 'exotic' fruits in your garden are so lucky! I can't even imagine anything other than a crabapple tree, apple or maybe a pear. I am truly jealous!

          1. OCEllen RE: OCEllen Apr 6, 2008 03:15 PM

            I'm also wondering about using honey! So I bought a substantial amount of agave syrup and honey today $$!

            1. OCEllen RE: OCEllen Apr 9, 2008 08:23 PM

              The report is...it worked great! The agave syrup was a little thin so I did add some sugar - but all turned out just excellent - translucent kumquats in delicious syrup (and in the jars as morning sun comes in the window ...all is beautiful!)

              9 Replies
              1. re: OCEllen
                Ruth Lafler RE: OCEllen Apr 10, 2008 12:20 PM

                Sounds fabulous. I love kumquats!

                1. re: Ruth Lafler
                  OCEllen RE: Ruth Lafler Apr 10, 2008 12:32 PM

                  I really am thinking of doing some in honey - with just a few drops of orange flower water!

                  1. re: OCEllen
                    janeh RE: OCEllen Jun 15, 2008 06:27 PM

                    This sounds great - I'd just been wondering about using agave in freezer jam. By the way, I buy agave on Amazon - much less expensive than I've found it anywhere else (and with free shipping). Amazingly, we do use enough over time that a case does n't fill the cupboard forever - especially in these iced mint tea guzzling days of summer.

                    1. re: janeh
                      toodie jane RE: janeh Jun 17, 2008 11:16 AM

                      I make it to be about $2.69 for a 11.5 oz bottle vs. $2.99 at Trader Joe's. I didn't do the math on the 46 oz jugs. Which do you buy?

                      1. re: toodie jane
                        janeh RE: toodie jane Jun 17, 2008 08:24 PM

                        I bought the 17 ounce size, but next time will price the 46 oz jugs since we've been using it more and that certainly involves less packaging. The Amazon price is significantly lower than any local sources - unfortunately, the nearest Trader Joe's is about 100 miles away.

                        1. re: janeh
                          oakjoan RE: janeh Jun 17, 2008 09:13 PM

                          So with gas prices what they are, you ought to be able to pick up some TJ agave syrup for about $60 a bottle....if it's a small bottle.
                          Amazon sounds like the best bet.

                          1. re: oakjoan
                            janeh RE: oakjoan Jun 18, 2008 07:51 PM

                            Yeah - even driving the Prius, Amazon's the better deal! I do stock up at TJ's when I'm in Phoenix, though

                  2. re: Ruth Lafler
                    oakjoan RE: Ruth Lafler Jun 17, 2008 09:11 PM

                    Kumquats are delicious! I love anything with that bittersweet citrus effect. I'd rather have orange marmalade (or kumquat or grapefruit) that the most elegant raspberry or peach jam. This idea is giving me ideas.

                  3. re: OCEllen
                    kaecha RE: OCEllen Sep 4, 2009 01:38 PM

                    I know I am "replying" to a post from some time ago, but I made some raw crabapple juice this morning and I would like to make jelly with it. I had 5 cups of juice and I added 1 3/4 cups of Agave (that was all I had left!) and it is still a bit tart, but it would do if I had to leave it as is. I left it all in bowls in the fridge this morning and I was hoping it would jell on it's own by the time I got home tonight (?).

                    I noticed that some juices just jell on their own. I haven't added anything else but the agave. I may have to add some Stevia as that is the only other sweetener I have. Does anyone have a good jelly recipe for a raw "cook".?

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