La Confiture d’Abricot de Miche

Evreux, June 3, 2017 – Miche lived to be 101 years old.  Right up until she left us she was talking about apricot jam, among other things, and the tricks she used to make it. She also wanted to point out the bird on the steeple outside her window and remind a visitor to wait until four o’clock to hear its song,  and she always wanted to know just exactly how the air felt outside.   I think of her so often but particularly now, as I anticipate making enough jam to enjoy for the coming year.    I’m re-running this blog post to remind all of you who have apricots on your trees or in your markets to make this; it’s the best ever.

I thought I already had the best recipe for apricot jam until I tasted Miche’s. Miche is Edith’s aunt and she lives about five minutes away from us in Louviers. In her eighties, she is the voluntary grandmother to all of Edith’s children and nieces and nephews—which numbered 28 at last count—and in summer she buys kilos of apricots to make this jam for them. She brought us a jar one cold February day and it tasted like summer in a jar, so intensely apricot-y that we all swooned. I immediately renounced my old recipe in favor of this one.

Miche is categoric—she makes the jam in small batches, uses as little sugar as possible, and cooks fruit for as short a time as she can get away with. She also refuses to put apricot pits in her jam—a typical French custom—for in her mind, anything that interferes with the pure, fresh apricot flavor is blasphemy. She’s right, her apricot jam is out of this world.

Note: this jam doesn’t cook much, so it can be very “loose,” or liquid-y. But that is French jam for you.  If you cook it longer to thicken it up, you’ll lose some of the very fresh flavor.  So, accept the looseness and “die for” the flavor!

3 pounds (1-1/2 kg) apricots, pitted and quartered

3 cups (600g) granulated sugar

  1. Place the apricots and the sugar in a non-reactive pan or bowl, stir, cover and let macerate for at least 12 hours.
  2. Transfer the fruit and sugar to a large, heavy saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat so the mixture is boiling merrily and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and ladle the jam into sterilized canning jars, leaving 1/4-inch headroom. Seal according to the jar manufacturer’s instructions.

Yields about 10 cups (2-½ liters)

223 Responses

  1. I am overwhelmed with cots; saw your Miche recipe and love it! Can you tell me tho, does she water bath or
    just fill jars hot and seal? I appreciate the low sugar and the brief cooking. terrific, many thanks, wynne

  2. I’m a mere male and a novice at jam making. How can this make jam when there is no liquid (water)? Is this ‘secret women’s business’?

    1. Hello, Alan! No secrets here – the liquid is inside the fruit. When you macerate the fruit with sugar, the liquid emerges! It is magic stuff, unlinked to gender! Good luck.


  3. I’m just in the process of making this jam, bottles in the oven sterilizing, fruit looks wonderful, deep orange with rosy cheeks, can hardly wait…

      1. I have made this wonderful apricot jam and sure was a huge hit. I made fresh Brioche bread individual rolls made in large muffin tins (6 )
        Can you use same method using black plums??

        1. Hello, Mary!

          Yes, I’m sure you could, but I am not certain that the juices will come out the same way as they do with the apricots. I would say TRY IT! And let me know!

          1. Yes I made the plum today, it turned out beautifully.
            Deep crimson in color. The same method only I put 4 cloves and some cinnamon, a squeeze of lemon, and let sugar and fruit work together over night. The result flavor and texture surperb.. Try it Susan, Cheers..

          2. This is very exciting! So nice to let fruit macerate overnight like that, isn’t it? Tell me, are you in a climate “down under” or do you use frozen fruit? For plums, try a bit of vanilla bean in each jar next time, too. Thanks again!

  4. We have most beautiful fruit and vegetables very fresh, and we are lucky to grow the best produce that the world seeks.
    I grow some of my own fruits and vegetables, even some bush tucker foods that the aboriginal people eat.. Yes Sydney suburbs can grow fruit and vegetables that are mostly grown in the far North Queensland and beyond.
    One of the most interesting fruits is a finger lime. It’s a fruit that looks like caviar inside and it burst in your mouth with a fresh lemon/lime tang. I have added this to to beautiful lemon curd/butter.
    You can google it, it’s very interesting..

    1. Mary,

      Thank you for letting me know all of this!
      I love finger limes. They are a big hit here in France, mostly with upscale restaurateurs. I did a short blog post about them – love them on everything. You live in a very special spot!

  5. Hello Susan,

    I am new to jam making and I have tried making strawberry jam twice and both times it did not firm up. This summer I am determined to try again and apricot jam is at the top of my list, being one of my favorites. This looks like a recipe I would like to try but I have a question. Do you process the jars once filled using either the water bath or pressure cooker methods? Or is the jam just left to cool in the jars once filled and capped? Thanks so much, I am a great fan of your books and hope to attend one of your classes some day.


    1. Hello, Lisa!

      First, I’d love to welcome you to a class. You’d love it.
      Secondly, you don’t have to process the jam once it’s in the jar. Just close the jar, listen for the “pop” and your jam is sealed. It’s easy! Good luck, let me know.

  6. Great result with amazing fruit/ sugar ratio! The larger the fruit the more water therefore a bit more boiling was required.

    1. Kate ! So glad. And you are right, that is why writing recipes is tough. But, you figured it out. Now you have to try it over home made vanilla ice cream. Delish! Bravo!

  7. Just moved to France, the Languedoc, and inherited a mature apricot tree. I’ve been watching the fruit ripen and it seems that much of it is about ripe. I’m 67 and really don’t want to climb the tree, but the apricots which have fallen voluntarily have a bruise where they hit the floor of my courtyard. The neighbor man recommended shaking the tree…I think, his recommendation was in rapid French…rapider than my comprehension. Will the bruising hurt the jam do you think?

    1. Linda,

      No, the bruising won’t hurt the fruit. As for shaking the tree, very good idea in theory, but you need to find some strong person in your area to do it for you! Unless you want to wait for all the fruit to drop, which isn’t the worst idea! Good luck and what an adventure!

    2. Hi Linda
      I use a fruit picker made by wolf garden tools, its an attachment that goes on the extending handle made for the long handled loppers, its basically a bag with a toothed ring around the top that you pull the fruit from the tree with, you can buy them online from fr jones and son in England, I bought mine from them and shipped it to Australia ! today we picked our crop before the parrots got them so they are macerating right now !!

      1. Peter, wonderful! Apricots seem very far away for us…we had below freezing this morning, and persimmons are on the menu!

  8. It is probalby worth it to do a process where you lower the jars immersed in a boiling water covering 1 inch above the lids, and boil for 5 minutes, just to sterilize the inside of the lid and sterilize the airspace there just in case of the odd spoiler organism lurking in the headroom there.

  9. Dumb question… Should you boil the fruit/sugar mix covered or uncovered? Is the idea for the liquid to reduce by evaporation? Thanks

    1. Darren, REgarding apricot jam, or any jam, you want to reduce liquids to concentrate flavor so, yes, boil – gently – uncovered, stirring from time to time.

  10. Another question.. Ideally, what consistency are we looking for in the boiled fruit/sugar mix? I boiled mine for 10 mins as directed (lid on) and the apricots were all still in solid pieces and the mixture very runny. I boiled for another 10 mins lid off (20min total cooking) and then did the old test for jam setting on the saucer.. it wasn’t setting… boiled for another 10 mins… (30 min total cooking) and the setting test still not working…. boiled another 10… jam starting to set but only a little… panicked and added some pectin.. boiled for another 5 mins…. jam now setting! put into jars and sealed in a hot bath.

    1. Darren,
      This jam isn’t jellied like traditional American jams. It’s more liquid. The best way to thicken it, if you must, is to reduce it. But the beauty of this jam is its fresh, apricot flavor. Pectin is fine, but it’s a veil between the flavor of the apricot and your mouth…still, I bet it tastes wonderful!

  11. Hi, was wondering if you can seal the jam with those plastic jam covers with the rubber bands. Do they work the same as using the lids?

    1. Hello, Rosa! Yes, if you’re speaking of the cellophane squares that you dampen, then stretch over the jars. They work great (for jam that is in a cool, dark place afterwards). Happy jam making!

  12. Hello,
    I made this jam yesterday to give as Christmas gifts to some family members. It is delicious! So easy to make as well. I am absolutely thrilled with how it came out. My only disappointment is that there isn’t more for me to keep for myself. Will have to make another batch!
    And yes, I am “down under”. So lucky to have beautiful summer fruits at Christmas time.

  13. Each day we go out and harvest some more apricots and then leave the wattle
    birds and parrots to take their share! This way we both win. Making this jam at the moment; it smells wonderful. Having so little sugar to fruit, is it a good keeper or does to need to live in the fridge?

    1. You are so lucky. We are near the fire enjoying chestnuts and foie gras, lots of tea and hot chocolate! Apricots are far, far away.

  14. Hello, I was wondering if granulated sugar is just ordinary white sugar? I have seen on the shelves sugar advertised as used for jam making. Should I be using that? or just regular? Thanks heaps.

  15. One more question, how do I store the jars once complete? By the way I used regular sugar and it tastes divine!
    Thanks heaps and Happy New Year!

  16. This is a wonderfully tasting jam with delightful flavour bursts every mouthful, my favourite apricot jam recipe. Thank you for sharing.

  17. Just took the net off our apricot tree and harvested. Lots of the fruit had been damaged through the net, so I washed and trimmed, then went looking for recipe. Found this, so now the fruit is macerating. Looking forward to cooking it up tomorrow.

    1. Kate,
      Never a silly question – that is a fact of life. And the weight is before being pitted, the way you would pick/buy them.

  18. This is a divine jam, and such a novelty for me that the apricots have been picked from my very own (new) backyard.
    So perfect, it warranted me buying proper preserving jars for the second batch that is now bubbling away on my stovetop.
    I will have this deliciousness in my pantry for the next 12 months!
    Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  19. Hi Susan,
    Such a beautiful recipe….with a lesser amount of sugar in it than other recipes that I have used in the past, does this jam keep long? I also used the same recipe to make plum jam using blood plums and it worked out wonderfully. Having trouble keeping the parrots away from the fruit down here though (in Vic, Australia). Once upon a time one did not have to worry, it appears they have migrated down from Qld due to food shortage.
    Many thanks,

    1. Claire,
      Well, some of us could wish to see parrots in their fruit trees, though if it means global warming and less fruit for the jam jar, maybe not. STill, what an exotic picture…! Thank you.

  20. Thank you for this recipe. I have been making my apricot jam this way for years, originally by mistake and realised how gorgeous it is. But reading your recipe I feel vindicated.

  21. Hi Susan
    Thank you for sharing this delicious recipe. It has been a real pleasure to produce such classy apricot jam. We lost our fruit to birds and an invading rat last season so have been vigilant this year and saved the crops. Thanks to Claire (a fellow Aussie!) for her story of success with the blood plums. I have picked the plums to outsmart the birds and have them in paper bags ripening ready for making jam from your recipe Susan.
    Thank you so much
    (South Australia)

  22. I made apricot jam using a similar recipe but added lemon juice and only macerated for 2 hours. Should these differences affect its consistency? It is quite runny. My apricots are large and juicy and appear to be a cross with a peach or nectarine. I am also from Oz, the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria.

    1. Mandy,

      There are many variables in your fruit and your method. I would guess that adding lemon juice wouldn’t make a lot of difference, but the fruit you are using probably does. As for the 2 versus 12 hours – that’s a flavor issue. I’d go with the 12 hour maceration. Good luck!

      1. Lemon Juice is a preservative, to keep the jams longer (like vinegar is to pickles) also keep the color of the fruit from turning dark. Use fresh squeezed lemons for a wonderful taste, Can also use lemon zest in your macerate. Gives a fresh lemon after taste.

      1. I made this with my 6 year old daughter yeserday. Such an easy recipe. Finally put it in the jars last night. Tastes divine. Absolutely stunning. What is most amazing though is the colour. Such a vibrant orange. It looks as delicious as it tastes.

  23. Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe Susan. I have been making apricot jam for years from our apricot tree and this is now my very favourite recipe; I’m cooking mt second batch now. The shorter cooking time, less sugar, 24 hour marination all make the most divine jam, laden with apricot pieces that dissolve into your morning toast. I’m another jam maker from ‘down under’ enjoying our summer fruits. Thoughts to all of you in France at this moment.

    1. Dear Louise,

      Thank you so very much. I’m glad you love it! The southern hemisphere must be covered in apricots!

  24. Sure is! My neighbour just gave me a box full. She’s drying them, preserving them and making jam. My favourite jam is apricot, but I’ve never made it before, nor any other jam for that matter. My mum used to always make it, so I googled apricot jam recipes and found this one.
    Thankyou, Susan, for the recipe. I just have to track down some jars now!
    (Melbourne, Australia)

    1. Alison – yes, you can. Just make sure jars and lids are sterlized. They should “pop” when they cool to let you know they are sealed. Good luck!

  25. Help – I want to make this wonderful apricot jam next week. I have 7 lbs of pitted fresh apricots in the freezer from last years harvest. How would I measure for this recipe? I understand you used 3 lbs of fresh ‘unpitted’ apricots to 3 cups sugar. Is the weight much different in pitted vs unpitted? How can I convert this to cups of fruit and cups of sugar? Thanks for any help you can lend in how to measure.

    1. Rene,
      I would use about 5-1/2 cups sugar to make the jam. This is an educated guess. Remember, the jam isn’t solid – it’s quite loose, so don’t be tempted to add a lot more sugar.

      Good luck.


      1. Just for the record – do not use frozen apricots! Once thawed they turned to mostly liquid and had no taste at all. Tried to macerate over night but the only taste was yeasty. Threw the whole thing out. Now I can’t wait for this years summer apricots so I can try again!!

        1. Too bad, Rene. Had to try though, right? I have used frozen apricots…I’m guessing your variety must be different. Ours are quite small.

  26. Susan,
    Do you need to skin the apricots before they macerate? Otherwise will there be skin in the jam?

    1. Ally, I don’t actually think it’s possible to skin an apricot, and the skin simply adds to the jam! Good luck!

  27. Have just made a batch of your jam using nisperos here is sunny Spain. It smells fabulous. Can you do the same with strawberries please?

    1. Jaine from Spain: yes. I will do that later in the week – if I find great strawberries. It’s a little early, but you can count on me!

  28. Hello from Iran
    Last year a dinner guest brought me 2 kg of fabulous tiny apricots from their garden. I found your recipe and made the jam which was beyond delicious. Later in the summer I also made it with plums with great success.
    I made another batch yesterday, sadly with apricots that were not as fabulous as last year. Even so, the jam is great.
    Thank you for a wonderful recipe.

    1. Bettina, Well, thank you for making it. Sounds so great. And Iran sounds like a rather exotic place to live. What other fruits do you have?

  29. Hi, I’m in Spain too and just looking for recipes for Apricot jam and found yours which I’m about to make. A couple of people asked about the life of the jam as it has less sugar than other recipes, I’m curious about this too, I can’t see an answer so could you let me know. Many thanks

    1. Hello, Nancy! If you seal the jam, it has a indefinite life. It’s the sealing that makes the difference! If you don’t want to seal it, you can freeze it and, again, it’s life will be long. Good luck!

  30. I picked up some fresh apricots on our recent trip to Palisade Colorado. After researching recipes, I decided to
    try this one because it cooks so quick. I just couldn’t believe it! The last time I cooked apricot jam it seemed like it cooked an hour on the stove. Well, the recipe worked perfectly – and SO FAST! Thanks!

    1. Jackie, So glad it worked for you! Quick cooking means you actually get apricot flavor in your jam!!!

    2. Hi Jackie, I live in Montrose, Colorado … Just down the road from you. Hello neighbor. I am making this recipe tomorrow. My apricots are fresh off our tree. Apricots are all over the place out here!

  31. My apricots are macerating right now … just reviewed this blog and noticed that the weight of 3 lbs of apricots was before being pitted. I measured 3 lbs of apricots after being pitted. Should I add more sugar?

    1. Evelyn…weigh the pits and see. If you decide to add more sugar, not more than 1/2 cup. Good luck!

  32. I just quartered the apricots (11:30 p.m.) and realized that 12 hours from now I’ll be at work. How long can I macerate the apricots without effecting the flavor and consistency?

        1. kacy – It’s a bit long, but try it out. They might be softer than normal, or there might be more liquid than usual, but I don’t think it will hurt them.

  33. Bonjour Susan. Longtime admirer of yours, and have two of your books on my shelf, both stained with juices, oil, spatters of duck fat and bits of dried flour here and there!
    I operate a small chambre d’hôte here in the Perigord, and make lots of jams for my guests, mostly just a jar or two at a time, using my leftover cut-up strawberries from breakfast, or half a flat of apricots, and then lots of fig at the end of summer. The jars that “pop,” I keep on shelves; those that don’t pop go straight into the fridge and are used up in no time.
    I’m wondering if you ever use some of the French sucre à confiture (there are several brands). These are bags of sugar that already contain a pre-measured amount of pectin. I have one particular brand I use, which contains only sugar, natural fruit pectin and ascorbic acid. I usually macerate my fruit for at least a few hours, if not most of the day, and use less sugar than the “equal weight” method. I like using the pectin in my jams because they set up much more quickly, which means the fruit is less cooked and colors stay bright. Of course, the jam can be a little more firm than the normal French homemade jams…but of course, that leaves fewer jam stains on my old linen napkins from the breakfast table and fewer trails of jam syrup across the table.
    What’s your experience with this type of sugar? Have you used it? Am I cheating? Am I naughty? I’m not sure how much the pectin flavors the jam. You say you can taste the difference. What does pectin taste like? (I’ve never just eaten a spoonful of it.)

    1. Hello, Cait! You need to visit my friends Danie and Guy who have a foie gras farm near Terrasson – their foie gras is the best!!
      As for jam, I never use pectin. I always think it puts a layer between the flavor and the mouth. I just use good old sugar, and enough to make the jam taste good, but not enough to mask the fruit flavor. I do get the trail of jam on the tablecloth/napkin issue though!

      1. Thanks for the tip re: Danie & Guy. I’ll check it out. Of course, I have a couple of favorite farms nearby too, always looking to expand the list. I made the apricot jam, using just a little bit of the pectin sugar with the regular sugar, and it was fabulous. Guests have eaten it all, so I’m making more today and will be bold, and go with straight sugar!

        1. Cait, Life is definitely more fun (and jam is just that much tastier) when you are bold!!! Good luck, let me know.

  34. I’m so happy I found this recipe! It’s wonderful, and I love using the maceration process to create the intense flavors. I had intended for my batches of jam to e Christmas gifts, but I find myself so excited to share that I’m giving them away now.

    1. Julie, YOu’re right to give them away now! Don’t forget to save some for yourself, and you can eat it on toast in December, and feel like it is summer!

  35. Hi, this is my first time making apricot jam. I picked the apricots from my tree. My question is when I macerate , do I leave out in the kitchen or in the fridge.

  36. Hi,
    I am preparing my home picked apricots that were frozen a few months ago. I am letting them thaw in two large bowls with cover. Each bowl has 6lbs of pitted apricots. I don’t really understand the maceration process 100% How does the sugar actually get to touch all the fruit? I squeezed fresh lemons and was thinking that I could add a cup of that lemon juice per 6lbs of apricots, mix it together by hand so the fruit are wet from the juice, then add and mix the sugar together so the sugar has something to stick to. Am I over thinking this? Not sure what to do. Perhaps I have too many apricots per bowl – so the sugar won’t touch every apricot. Thanks for your advice.


    1. Kufu, Let the apricots thaw, then add the sugar. Don’t add all that lemon juice. It will really affect the flavor. Good luck!

  37. Hi Susan, I’m from Montreal. I’d love to make apricot jam. I have a couple of questions. Firstly, can I or should I add a bit of lemon juice? Many recipes use it wtih apricot jam. Secondly, what about using dried apricots? I just worry about finding sweet apricots. And if I do use dried apricots, would I soak them for several hours or what would you recommend?
    Thanks, Sharon

    1. Hello Sharon,

      I’ve never used dried apricots, but would think they would work. I would pour 2 to 3 cups boiling water over them – just to moisten – then cook according to the recipe. I wouldn’t add lemon juice. You’ll have to play this by ear in terms of moisture…it’s probably not the right season to make apricot jam – if I were you, I would wait until next summer. Good luck.

    1. Marnie,

      I have never tried it with nectarines. I don’t think you need to let them sit overnight. I would guess the proportion of sugar is appropriate, and the cooking time. Give it a try and let me know! Good luck.

  38. I should have followed my judgment on this one. Made as directed, this gave a lovely flavour, but didn’t set AT ALL. Essentially I got apricot stew with large pieces in it, not jam. I had to go back and re-cook it with a source of pectin (rosella pods in this case) by which time the fresh flavour was lost. Knowing apricots are a low-pectin fruit, I would have done that the first time around, but decided to give your recipe a go. I have to say it didn’t work out.

    1. That is too bad, truly. I’ve made this jam every year for many, many years and it is always a success and of all the recipes I’ve ever posted, it is the one that gets the most kudos. BUT there is a caveat. All French jams are much “looser” than most jams and this is no exception. The French don’t use much pectin because they consider it a flavor barrier. They don’t care for jam that “sits up”.

  39. Taste is superb, delightfully scrumptious with every bite, and the colour and texture divine.
    Thank you for sharing a great recipe that is so easy to make.

  40. I use this recipe for all my jams except cumquat. It always works for me. I add water to the cumquats and Macerate overnight. I also soak the seeds in water overnight which produces a jelly I add to the jam when boiling. It always sets. Do other seeds do this. My apricots are maserating now, will the seeds produce jelly if soaked?

  41. It’s Apricot season in South Africa, and how lucky I am to have found this recipe. The jam is really delicious and I hope you are OK with it that I am sharing it on my website of course by mentioning your name. It’s out of this world and travels the world!

    1. Happy New Year, you summer bunny! We are finally getting cold winter weather. BRRR. Saw apricots in the market today, from Spain, and they looked like golf balls! Let me know how it turns out.

  42. I’m an accomplished cook, (retired chef and restaurateur) and couldn’t make this work. Is 10 minutes too little cooking time? Where did I go wrong?

    1. As you know, many things can affect jams. what didn’t go right? Is it too runny for your taste? Jams here are very “loose” – but so flavorful. Maybe your fruit is juicier than what we get here. You can try cooking it more – just make sure that you don’t cook the flavor out of it. Good luck and let me know.

  43. Happy New Year from Melbourne Australia Susan! I’ve made Apricot Jam before but this time I’m going to use your recipe. Reading everyone’s feedback has made my mouth water, I think I can already taste it. This is the perfect time of year for us to make preserves, jams etc. I live on my own but my family & friends get to enjoy the fruits of my labour and I love sharing these delights with them. I’ll let you know how I go. Cheers Diana

    1. Good luck! Remember, French jams are “looser” than many jams, they like it best that way, and little cooking preserves the flavor of the fruit! Lucky you!

      1. OMG does not do this Jam justice. OH MY GOODNESS this is THE BEST Apricot jam I have ever made. I will never make jam any other way. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. I cannot wait to give some jars away to my family & friends.

  44. Have made 2 batches since “finding’ this recipe on Boxing day as a friend gave me apricots off her tree Christmas Day, it was so delicious I went and brought more to make the 2nd batch. Yes the jam is, as you say. looser than we normally eat in Australia but so delicious – I measured without the pits but just cooked it an extra 5 minutes. I’ve given most of it to friends who have all asked for recipe!!

  45. Just made your jam today. It tastes divine. How long will the jam last in the fridge? What is its shelf life?
    My apricots were at starting to”turn” and some were very soft so I didn’t macerate them. Should this affect the finished jam?

  46. Having made this jam for the first time yesterday (New Zealand) I was inspired by the ease of it and the flavour is to die for, but, I did think I had gone wrong as it did not set firmly as normal. After reading all the comments and having discovered the fact relating to french jam being ‘looser’ I am relieved to know I can leave it alone, label it ‘French’ Jam for my friends and make my next batch.

    Susan, thank you for sharing you may want to put a sentence in the recipe re it’s looseness?

    1. Linda,

      I think you’re right. It also depends much on the apricots. I don’t know what kind you have, but the French apricot tends to be less juicy than the ones in the U.S. If you have a chance, could you send me a photo? THANK YOU!!!

          1. Hi Susan, you asked for a photo but I was not sure whether you wanted the end jam or the apricots used? Regards.

  47. Thanks, Susan, for your recipe.
    Made it last week using apricots from my son’s tree – my grand daughter and her parents love it. You are so right – the full flavour of fresh apricots will be with us in winter, although I don’t think there will be any left by then!
    Now my two nectarine trees are groaning under the weight of fruit. The birds are flocking so I guess it will soon be time to harvest. Will try out same recipe.
    By the way, French “jam” is really ” conserve” as opposed to the American style “jelly” jam. So true for this delicious recipe.
    Bonne Année de l’Australie!

    1. Jay,

      You are right. I’m not sure how the nectarines will work as they are so much juicier, but try and then let me know. You should also try the nectarine sorbet from In a French Kitchen. It is sublime! Good luck, Bonne Annee!

  48. Hi. I am very excited to try my hand at making jam. I have never done it before. I bought a box of jamming apricots and have them cut in half in the freezer for when i have time to get to the kitchen. Would i be able to just pop them in a bowl and macerate and thaw them overnight? Or should i thaw first, then put the sugar on?

    1. Hello! I think you can pop them in frozen and macerate overnight. Should work out just fine. And good luck! I love “jamming apricots”. Do they have guitars?

  49. Hi Susan,
    I’m still making Miche’s apricot jam – unfortunately apricots are just about finished for the season here according to the local fruit and veg shop keeper- I’ll start earlier next summer.
    I have also used the same recipe with peaches just needed to remove the skin – turned out beautifully – just had to vary cooking time a little.
    My friends have all loved the jams and thank you for sharing the recipe.
    regards Keitha from Australia

    1. Keitha, I am so glad to know it works with peaches. With our grey day and cold temperatures, hard to believe you’re making apricot jam!

    1. Hello, Debbie, if you’re asking about the apricot jam, I’ve never made it with peaches, but I’ve they’re great prepared this way. You just have to cook the mixture a bit longer.

  50. Hi Susan,

    I’ve had the great pleasure of reading your books in the past, however, I have never tried making any of your recipes until recently, when I googled apricot jam. I was on holidays in Queenstown, New Zealand and invited some friends over for drinks. One of my friends, Bob, bought over about 4 kg of fresh apricots from his tree, he knows I love cooking so they would be put to good use!! I often make jams and preserves, so I decided to google apricot jam and to my surprise found your recipe.

    What a great method, however, I was a little worried about it being a little sloppy, so I used what is called, jam sugar. Not only did it turn out perfectly, not overly runny, it also tasted absolutely fantastic!!!!

    I am now back home in Brisbane, and I am going to try this with peaches, I will let you know how it turns out.
    Thanks so much

    1. Stephanie, I’m so glad you love it. What you used was probably sugar mixed with pectin. French jam tends to be runny, and depending on the apricots, it can be runnier still, almost more compote than jam. Let me know about the peaches!

  51. This sounded so delicious. I tried it with very ripe apricots. Despite visually removing any discolored portions, the concoction was a bit bubbly after macerating overnight on the counter. The flavor was off, so fearing mold, I sadly tossed the whole batch. I suspect I would have had better luck with slightly under ripe fruit and letting it macerate in the fridge.

    1. Oh dear, that’s too bad and a first. Were they macerating in a very warm room? Were they over ripe? It sounds like they fermented and you were right to toss them, but what a shame. Try with ripe, but not overly ripe, apricots. Good luck!

  52. i have just started making this jam using apricots from Italy, after reading about it been a bit soft thinking should i add some lemon to help thicken it or would adding some of the stones in a muslin cloth help to make it thicker. I don’t want to add more sugar

    1. Belinda,
      If you want it thicker, lemon juice may help. Don’t add sugar! You’re right on that. Good luck.

  53. I’m just about to make my second batch of apricot jam using this recipe – it worked perfectly for me and I found the consistency to be just right.

    I have one question, though …. at the top of this recipe it says that it yields ‘about 10 cups – 2 ½ litres). I used 1.5 kilos of apricots and 600 grams of sugar and it yielded exactly 1.25 litres of jam. I filled 5 x 250 ml ‘Bormioli Rocco’ preserving jars. I can’t see how the quantity given could yield 2.5 litres of jam.

    1. Yields can vary, Tricia. This is the yield I get consistently, but perhaps my apricots are different from yours? I’m so glad you love the jam!

      1. Thanks for replying Susan – I made the jam again yesterday – my local co-op had apricots ‘in offerta’ (on special) so I couldn’t pass up the opportunity, especially when the jam is so quick and easy to make and receives unanimous praise. This is my third batch but my yields have always been consistent – 1.25 litres of jam. I think you must be right Susan – the yield must depend on the apricots used. I have to say, though, that it is seriously the most delicious apricot jam that I’ve ever made – and I love apricot jam. I swapped a jar with a girlfriend who made her usual apricot recipe with apricots from her tree and she rang me to say that she’s going to change to your recipe, too.

        1. Tricia, this is wonderful and yes, it must have to do with the apricots. I’m so glad you love the jam! Thank you, MICHE!

        2. Tricia – I have another friend who said he didn’t get the quantity either, which means I want to retest the recipe. I can’t right now; but will get at it when I can and publish the results. Thanks!

  54. Bon Jour Susan,
    Thanks for the great easy recipe! Jarring up 6, 8 ounce jars. I think my apricots are smallish. The tree is only two years old. I couldn’t be happier! It’s delicious! Do you have any wisdom about Bing cherries French style?

    1. Hello, Celia,

      Glad you love it! Regarding cherries, one typical way to preserve them is to put them in a jar with brandy and leave them for a few weeks. You can add some sugar, too. Another thing to do is add them to what we call Confiture de Vieux Garcon, translated loosely as “Old Man’s Jam”. This is seasonal fruit layered with sugar and alcohol (recipe in French Farmhouse Cookbook); You let it sit, then serve it over ice cream (or eat it with a spoon). Another thing to do with Bing cherries is to make Clafoutis. Good luck!

  55. Used your recipe to make my first batch of apricot jam. I was skeptical for several reasons at first – this recipe uses only 2/3 the sugar and no lemon juice compared to all my other jams, and I wasn’t sure about leaving the skins on. Unlike many of your cooks, I don’t have an apricot tree nearby – apricots in the US seem to all grow far away from here (Charleston, SC). I wonder if the “commercial” apricots have a thicker skin- I also wonder if there is some pectin content in the skins. When I made this jam the flavor and texture were outstanding – following your recipe I ended up with one of the thickest jams I had ever made (I don’t ever use added pectin). It may be that shipped fruit is also not as juicy and for those who find the jam too thin perhaps they would benefit from allowing the fruit to sit on the counter for a few days to drop the moisture content some.

    1. Preston, In my market in Louviers, there are many varieties of apricots that ripen at different times during the season. They vary in juiciness, size, and flavor. So, if that is true in FRance, then it must be true everywhere, making it a little tough to predict the exact result of the jam. Regarding pectin in apricots, I don’t have a real answer, though apricots don’t make it on any list I’ve found for high-pectin fruit. There is, though, likely some pectin in apricot skin. Sounds like you love the jam!

  56. I tried both recipes, the apricot and the plum .. according to Miches recipe and both turned absolutely devine… the apricot jam turned golden and the plum one deep red… canned summer out of this world!!
    the most amazing jam I ever made… Thank you for sharing this secret 🙂

  57. Susan,

    Hi, do you ever put the kernels in to your apricot jam? It is suggested some English recipes.
    I am in the middle of slavishly following your system!

    Janet, from Sussex

    1. Janet,

      Yes, I do put a kernel in; it gives the jam an almond flavor. I don’t always want this flavor, however, so I usually put a pit in half the jars. I hope you don’t feel too much like a slave following the system! Let me know how it turns out.

  58. I have frozen apricots from this years crop. If I let them thaw before macerating there will be a lot of liquid. Do I use the liquid or discard it

  59. Hello Susan,

    Thank you so much for this wonderful recipe. I made it today with home grown apricots and i have never tasted jam like this before.
    The taste is just out of this world and i found the consistency perfect, not too runny at all.
    I live on the mornington peninsula in Victoria, Australia.
    I have so many strawberries growing so im keen to try this recipe out with them.
    Thank you again and all the best xxx

  60. Colour me impressed. My brother had a HUGE amount of apricots on his tree so I came to stay with all my preserving gear ready for a rather hot but bountiful apricot experience. (37C today here in Melbourne) I am not usually one to make jams due to the sugar content and had already put down 30 jars of Apricots in Juice, 40 Pie Apricots as well as 55 jars of Apricot Nectar. My brother asked… don’t suppose you are making jam… so after searching I luckily found this site of yours… Made the first lot to your specifications and oh my goodness… seriously… best ever jam. We stripped the tree yesterday of every last morsel and I have 3 kgs sitting there all in the now liquid sugar just waiting to be made. My brother is totally delighted that the birds have had their rightful share and we have profited to this extent.

    Thank you so much for posting this recipe as it’s in a class all of its own. I am going to do the same for peaches that I am looking at over in the neighbors place. Running very low on jars now.

  61. Hi Susan, I’m inundated with strawberries at the moment and thought I would try this method with strawberries … I relied on my memory for quantities and instead of using 600g sugar to 1.5 kg of fruit, I used only half the quantity of sugar. When I realised my mistake the strawberries had been macerating for about 14 hours so I decided to go ahead and make the jam with the reduced sugar quantity as the strawberries were very ripe and sweet. The result was excellent so I think that, in the case of ripe strawberries at least, I’ll use the reduced sugar quantity. I’m not quite sure whether the higher quantity of sugar may in fact be necessary to preserve the jam? However, the jam is being devoured with enthusiasm so I don’t have to worry about keeping it for any length of time. This year my two apricot trees have fruit on them so I’m very much looking forward to making the apricot jam again, this year using my own apricots. Thanks once more for such a great recipe. Tricia

    1. Tricia, Imagine being “inundated” with strawberries. That sounds dreamy! I think you will probably want to try this every year,and every year may be slightly different depending on the sweetness of the berries. Sugar is a preservative, though if the jars are sealed well I don’t think it matters. Sugar also acts as a thickener when you cook it down, which you don’t want to do too much with strawberries, which is why recipes often call for equal weight sugar to fruit. But your jam sounds glorious. And apricots too. Ours are just arriving at the market and they’re already filled with flavor! I can’t wait to make my supply of jam.

  62. Thanks for the information regarding sugar being a preservative … I hadn’t thought about that. I use the Bormioli Rocco preserving jars that have a screw on lid – they’re very cheap here in Italy – if I think that I’ll have enough jam left to last a few months I just put it in a water bath for 15 minutes and then I don’t have to worry about any problems with ‘nasties’ growing in the preserve. My apricots are macerating at the moment, so they’re next in line. Then it will be more strawberry jam because, even though I’m giving away heaps of berries I still have lots left over. Tricia

  63. I live in Umbria, the ‘green heart’ of Italy! I’ve just made another batch of strawberry jam tonight and, returning to the question of the quantity of jam I get from 1.5 kilos of strawberries and 300 g of sugar – it made 3 x 250 ml jars and 2 x 150 ml jars, which is what I get when I make my apricot jam, too. It’s strange that you get so much more. Tricia

    1. Tricia, It is strange, but I’ve tested and restested. Hmm. Well, the season is good to do even more retesting, so I’ll let you know.

      Thanks for the heads’ up. Umbria is gorgeous – I loved my visit there, to the truffle farm of Dario Fo’s son. Take care.

  64. Just wanted to say thank you! I made a batch of jam today using your recipe and a heap of Aprium windfalls (a cross between an apricot and a plum) from the garden. It is the best jam I’ve ever made – all the comments are right about it being both a wonderfully easy recipe and a fantastically fresh tasting jam. I worried that it was going to be too runny when I put it into the jars but the cooled jam is a perfect consistency and the taste is divine!
    This will be my jam recipe from now on!

    1. Rachel – I’m so happy that you love it. I just made some and every time, I think it’s the best jam I’ve tasted!

  65. Susan, I’ve made this jam five times now I think. I was never sure if the weight was before or after taking the pits out. You answered it above. However, I’ve noted a variable. The metric version of the recipe calls for the sugar to equal 40% of the weight of the ‘cots. The U.S. measures version actually works out to about 44%. It is still low as many of these recipes go, but I wondered why I got different results sometimes. I had measured both ways.

    1. DAvid, I am in awe of metrics, that’s all I can say. But I will also say that when doing measurement converesions, the amounts are never exact. If they were, recipes would look like mathematical equations and no one would ever make them! So, we – by we I mean recipe writers – approximate according to established weights and measures which aren’t technically perfect. That is probably why your jam turns out a bit different each time, not to mention the wonders of nature. One year’s apricots will never be like another’s!

  66. The apricot recipe adapts well to other fruits, provided they contain a moderate amount of natural pectin. Otherwise you need to supplement it, often simply by adding a bit of pectin-rich fruit. Pears are comparable to apricots in pectin. In fact the Comice pear may have slightly more. I made a batch of Anjou pear jam, to which I added a bit of lemon juice to bring up the acidity and some chopped candied ginger. I wasn’t scientific about how much lemon juice to add. I just looked for something like the mild tang of lemonade. The ginger was about an ounce to each pound of fruit. It cooked up very well. Yet I must say that even with the ginger and lemon juice, the flavor of the pear jam was monochromatic in comparison with apricot. But I like it much better than a cinnamon-pear jam we had in our fridge.

    1. David-the-jam-lover! Yes, pears can be either fabulous or flat. I find little in between. Comice are the best we get here, though Anjou are often delicoius too. But you need either acid or spices. I love to poach pears with star anise, lemon, ginger, and cinnamon. For jam it sounds like you did the right thing, but maybe next time add more lemon juice, and maybe some zest too.

  67. I have about a pound of plums that were picked just a little bit too early. Mostly yellow flesh but a few red as well. I am trying this method, hopefully, it will make something edible out of somethings that are not!

    1. Annie, good luck. You know that plums will ripen slightly if you let them sit. But also, being underripe like that isn’t necessary a disadvantage. Let me know.

        1. Actually, after having a look through your website, I am going to use the left overs to make your rhubarb tart!

  68. I planted two apricot trees here in Melbourne, Australia about 18 months ago. The first seson I got in total about 5 apricots. This year my two trees must have all up over 100 apricots. I just finished making this jam with the first pickings. Tastes fantastic and the colour is to die for! Thank you and Miche for the recipe. Ok, now to make caneles!

  69. Hello Susan

    When we lived in North Queensland I used to make apricot jam from dried apricots and thought it was pretty good – until I discovered Miche’s recipe! I buy the apricots just to make jam and am heading for the kitchen after a long day to cut them up and leave them to macerate overnight. My husband ADORES it on hot buttery scones or toast as do I. The jam is sublime. Thank you so much for sharing.

    1. Oh, that is great and I would join your husband and ADORE the jam on scones, if you shared your recipe….!!! Thank you for writing.

  70. I am making apricot jam and came across your recipe while checking for altitude adjusted set temperatures. I am curious that your recipe does not call for lemon. I thought the acid was needed to help set the pectin but find it can make the jam too tart. The idea of not using it is delightful and I will be starting up a batch today. Do you have any thoughts related to not using Lemon I should be aware of. Thank you!

    1. Tom thought I’d answered. Apricots have practically no pectin, so adding lemon just makes the jam tart, doesn’t help it set. The only way to make it set is long cooking, but this denatures the flavor. So, be happy with “loose” jam, that’s how the French like it!

  71. My husband and I have bought an old farm house in New Mexico at 7200 feet altitude. There are three very old apricot trees which are quite abundant. We are delighted with your recipe and can hardly wait to try it out but I just read that I should boil my jars to sterilize an additional minute for each 1000 feet above sea level. Should I follow that same premise for the jam? Or adjust the amount of sugar?

    1. Sarah, Oh my, this sounds wonderful. I don’t have a lot of experience cooking at altitudes. But I know someone who does so let me check on that.

  72. Hello Susan, loved your apricot jam recipe so much would love to try with other fruits. How do you determine what ratio sugar to fruit quantity?

    1. Julie – thanks for the question. You have to play it a bit by ear. I would suggest you follow the quantities in the apricot recipe, minus about 1/2 cup because peaches are so much sweeter than apricots, without any acidity. Whatever you do, stay away from equal parts fruit and sugar. The other thing I would do with peaches is consider adding some lemon juice, to help it jell – not too much, 1 tablespoon per batch. this won’t make the jam firm, but it will help it jell; home made French jams, by the way, aren’t. They are often more like a compote. Pectin is used very little here because it acts like a veil between the flavor and the jam.

      This is inexact advice, but without trying it – and peaches here aren’t in great enough supply and this year particularly aren’t so flavorful, I can’t give exact advice. Good luck and let me know, allright?

  73. You might have addressed this in the above comments but can I make this same recipe with peaches?

  74. I never thought I’d say this about jam making, but “Miche’s Apricot Jam” recipe is one of the quickest and best recipes I’ve ever used. Not to mention the fact that the jam is fresh and delicious, just like eating apricots straight off the tree! I’d be happy to leave a photo of the finished product, but I’m not sure where to do that. 🙂

  75. I have a huge and prolific apricot tree. I make jam and chutney for the year ahead. Without lemon juice, will the fruit retain its color and flavor and be safe after 6 months or more?

    1. Barbara – lucky you! Regarding whether or not your jam will keep, that is a function of how you process it. The lemon juice isn’t the issue – the apricots pretty much keep their color with or without it. As for sealing, if you use a sure sealing method, it will keep for months and months. And if you’re concerned, refrigerate it! All the best…

  76. Hi Susan, thank you so much for sharing this recipe. I am in California with two apricot trees in my yard and I have been making this recipe for the last five years. None of my friends or family can’t believe how good it is. I have done it with Santa Rosa plums with same success, and today I am trying it with blackberries using the cold maceration, and roughly 3 to 1 fruit to sugar ratio. I think blackberries have a lot more pectin than apricots, So it may set a little thicker. Have you tried berries?

  77. Hi Susan, I had 10lbs (4.5kg) of blackberries to which I added 3lbs (1.4kg) of sugar, following roughly the sugar to fruit ratio in your apricot recipe. This macerated for 48 hours in the fridge. I heated the berries to simmer to break them down a bit and ran them through a food mill attachment on my stand mixer. The seeds in our wild blackberries are large and aren’t so palatable.
    I added 1/2C lemon juice then boiled for ten minutes and filled 8 half pint jars. Continued boiling the rest to 220°F (104°C) and filled seven additional jars.
    The first batch is like thick pancake syrup, the second half jelled more like American jam, But with much less sugar.
    In conclusion, when I do the apricots I leave them in large chunks and that gives it body. I think if I had left the berries whole it would be a very similar result, but taking the seeds out and left me with a purée. Much like if you had stuck the immersion blender in the apricot jam. I haven’t compared the flavor yet. It will be interesting to see the difference between 10 minutes of boiling and 45 minutes of boiling.
    Hope this is interesting! It is to me! Thanks again for your fantastic recipe and input.

    1. Paul of course this is interesting! I love it. And I will await your judgement on the flavor. I can imagine the results, but you’ll be the flavor witness!

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