24 Feb2011


Finally, a mango jam I really like. Just the right texture, still obviously mango fruit, a bright color, fresh taste and not overly sweet. I have made mango jams before, but they were never quite what I really wanted. My first attempt yielded a chunky, fruity and sweet preserve, delicious on toast, but a bit too sweet, previous post here. I posted about a second version of mango jam that I made, that was also good, but less of preserve and really more of a jam. With lemon juice added, it seemed to have a better balance of sweetness to fruity flavor, but it still wasn’t it. I subsequently tried several versions with muscovado sugar, but ended up with a dark saucy mess instead. There are definitely two schools of thought on mango jam — one simply a tropical version of western jams where the fruit is supreme — the other locally known as mango jaleya, where mangoes and sugar are stewed for hours until almost all the liquid evaporates and you have a very dense, concentrated and nearly dark mustard orange jam. This is the jam that is used as fillings for cookies such as masa podrida and other native delicacies. I see the advantages of both preparations, but I was seeking to perfect the former…


…the perfect opportunity presented itself when nearly 40 kilos of under ripe, organically raised and individually wrapped mangoes from a family farm in Guadalupe Cebu arrived at our home. We waited a couple of days and made jam from about 8-10 kilos of the mangoes, that were at that point a day shy of fully ripe. You need some of the sourness to create high notes in the final jam and these turned out very nicely indeed. I have always wondered why it is so difficult to find a really nice jar of mango jam in a country that boasts some of the finest mangoes in the world. Now I know why. At roughly 1.5 kilos of raw fruit plus sugar for a small 8 oz. jar of jam, it is wicked costly to do if you buy your mangoes retail. At PHP80 a kilo for good mangoes, your total cost would be roughly PHP150 a bottle, and you’d have to sell it for PHP250-300 to make it worth your while. That’s really a shame, because the sickly sweet grocery versions that are filled with preservatives, fillers and gosh knows what else simply do NOT hold a candle up to nicely made home made jam. If you find yourself with a bounty of mangoes, here’s how we did it.

For 8-9 kilos of mangoes a day shy of ripe, remove the meat and set aside the seeds. Weigh the mango meat, you will have roughly 4.0-5.0 kilos. Place the mango and juice of 3 dalandans in a food processor and pulse/blitz until the mango is just barely pureed. You don’t want to make it too smooth, the fruit chunks should still be clearly visible. Meanwhile, measure out white refined sugar to the same weight of the mango pulp, less about 10%. Many recipes suggest a 1:1 ratio, but I like my jam less sweet and possessing a brighter mango flavor. Put the blitzed mango in a large, heavy enameled or alternative copper jam pot. Add sugar, 2.5-3.0 tablespoons of fruit pectin powder and mix and let this stand for 15 minutes or so. Turn the heat up to high, stir the jam until it reaches 221F on a candy thermometer. You need a thermometer unless you are a really good and instinctive or lucky cook. Turn off the heat, skim the scum off the surface of the jam and bottle as you would all jams. You can store this in the fridge for a few weeks, otherwise, you will have to boil the bottles of jam submerged in water for 8-10 minutes if you want to keep it in the pantry for up to a year. I think the photos tell the story here. A wonderful color and consistency and a bright mango flavor. The best we have ever made at home. Now if only thousands of kilos of under ripe mangoes showed up in our kitchens at the right time… we could even sell it. :)



  1. leah says:

    What else can i say??? Give me some bread please =)

    Feb 24, 2011 | 4:18 pm


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  3. cvq says:

    Where do you find pectin in the Philippines? I’ve looked and looked and looked and have never found any. I wanted to make jam once and gave up when a) nobody at the stores knew what I was talking about and b) I personally scoured the grocery shelves and couldn’t find any either. I looked in the sugar and baking needs sections initially and went on to others with absolutely no luck. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

    Feb 24, 2011 | 4:30 pm

  4. Marketman says:

    cvq, you can sometimes get liquid or powdered pectin by Certo at Metro grocery in Market!Market! or in Cebu Metro Groceries. Also, they sometimes have it at baking products supply stores. Try Sweet Haven on Boni Avenue or other similar places…

    Feb 24, 2011 | 4:38 pm

  5. cvq says:

    Oh wow! I’ll be sure to head there asap – thank you so very much!!!

    Feb 24, 2011 | 5:24 pm

  6. Luanne Shackelford says:

    That looks amazing! This what we will do the next time our trees bear fruit!

    Feb 24, 2011 | 6:43 pm

  7. Nadia says:

    MM…what would happen if you don’t put pectin in the mango jam? I don’t think I can find pectin here in Dumaguete.

    Feb 24, 2011 | 8:04 pm

  8. Marketman says:

    Nadia, it would be watery and not jell up… I have made mango jams before without pectin, but they have a different consistency. Add a bit more citrus like lemon perhaps to compensate, but not too much lemon as it will overpower the mango flavor.

    Feb 24, 2011 | 9:11 pm

  9. tnm says:

    This is just awesome! I wonder if I can use the mangoes available here in the US instead of Philippine mangoes. Any input would be appreciated.

    Feb 25, 2011 | 1:01 am

  10. Getter Dragon 1 says:

    I bet this would pair well with lechon…sort of the same way as cranberry sauce and turkey.

    Feb 25, 2011 | 1:10 am

  11. FestiveRebel says:

    @ Gdragon1 – what about sweet mango infused “sarsa” ng lechon? That would be palatable too, eh?

    Feb 25, 2011 | 3:05 am

  12. Angela says:

    I made mango jam once using the recipe from the Ball Book (?) except that I used Manila mangoes. It didn’t even cross my mind that the Manila mangoes are considerably sweeter that those found in American grocery stores. Unfortunately, the jam turned out too sweet. It would have been delicious had I used less sugar.

    Feb 25, 2011 | 4:31 am

  13. present tense says:

    Nadia, maybe cornstarch could be a serviceable substitute for pectin. But you may have to use more liquid to counteract the solid pulp in mango. Some years back, with lots of dalandan puree, and because of its extremely liquid nature, cornstarch was functional in getting me the viscosity i wanted. But i also used a sugar syrup ( ration 1:1 ) Hope that helps

    Feb 25, 2011 | 10:10 am

  14. Getter Dragon 1 says:

    @FestiveRebel – I like the way you think. It might work though at first it doesn’t sound like it. According to Bizarre Foods, they like grape jelly with liver mush in the Carolinas. That said, I think poutine lechon might take off in Canada.

    Feb 25, 2011 | 10:16 am

  15. Bubut says:

    thanks for posting on how to create different kind of jams. Now at home we do our jams depending on what fruit in season is. We use brown sugar (segunda, not the dark brown) with the measure of 1: 0.5 (fruit : sugar). I dont use pectin as we just consume the jam within the week. I have created strawberry, blueberry, pineapple and now we will try the ripe mangoes. At least were sure that we are enjoying these jams without any preservatives and less sugar.

    Feb 25, 2011 | 11:24 am

  16. Marketman says:

    Bubut, you are right, homemade trumps additive and chemical infused jams anyday. Actually, there are established proportions of fruit or pulp to sugar profesionally, but for homemade jams I guess do whatever makes one happy… festive rebel and getter dragon, yes a fruity salsa would be nice with the pork. present tense, I wouldn’t put cornstarch in jam, rather suffer a more liquid fruity version that one marred with cornstarch. tnm, I don’t see why you couldn’t use mangoes in the U.S. you would just have to adjust for sweetness and moisture.

    Feb 25, 2011 | 1:12 pm

  17. Joy says:

    That is great. I would love some.

    Feb 26, 2011 | 3:59 am

  18. sister says:

    I make mango jam in the US with Haden and Ataulfo mangoes, or a mixture of different kinds of mangoes to allow for variations in fiber and juice content. Just use almost ripe ones from Mexico, Haiti, or occasionally Florida, plentiful in May and June.
    Peel the mangoes and chop finely or use a food processor, but do not over process into a slurry. Measure the mangoes and if using dry pectin add it to the fruit first. If using liquid pectin follow package directions and add last. About 2% pectin works for a soft set and approximately 7/8 c. sugar to every cup of mango. Do not reduce sugar or you will be cooking a long time to get to 63% sugar at which point it “jells”. Bring the mango pulp to a boil in a large non reactive pot and gradually add the sugar, stirring constantly until your candy thermometer registers about 220 F. Add a scant tbsp. of lemon juice per cup of mango just before it registers 220 F and boil another min. Skim off the scum as you boil. Pour into sterilized jars, seal, and hot water bath for 10 min. for pint jars. Do not cook more than 8 cups of fruit at a time or it will not thicken quickly enough to reach the jell point and keep its flavour.
    Mango does not naturally have a lot of pectin like apples or quinces do, and commercial
    pectin is made from either apple or citrus peels. In the US Certo or Sure Jell packages are sold in grocery stores and if you want a larger amount go to pacificpectin.com.

    Feb 27, 2011 | 11:24 am

  19. shashemama says:

    hello,mr.mm at last nakita ko na kyo sa t.v. during your interview with ms jessica sojo,im also a follower of your blog.happy to see you!
    I am selling home made mango jam no preservatives added,all natural fruit.pick up only max. 6 bottles only.tyvm mr. marketman.

    Mar 3, 2011 | 2:26 pm

  20. Bertie B says:

    Looks like a good mango jam. I’m certainly going to give it a try.

    I too have been looking for Pectin here in the Philippines without success & have just brought some back from a trip to the UK. Anybody who finds it here should let us know where to look.

    Actually, the web has lots of places telling you how to make your own Pectin. Never tried it but will. See this one below:

    Tart / Green Apple Pectin

    3 pounds sliced, washed tart, green apples (like Granny Smith) with peels and cores. Crabapples are the best. Small, green, immature apples of most varieties work, too.
    4 cups water
    2 tablespoons of lemon juice

    Wash, but don’t peel, about seven large tart green apples. Put them in a pot.
    Cut them into pieces
    Add four cups of water and two tablespoons of lemon juice.
    Boil the mixture until it reduces almost in half (about 30 to 45 minutes), then
    Strain it through cheesecloth or a jelly bag.
    Boil the juice for another 20 minutes,
    Pour it into sanitized jars, and seal them to store in the refrigerator, freezer or process in a water bath.

    How much to use?
    That is the big question… and difficult to answer. The pectin content of fruit varies so much, even within a season, that almost anything I could tell you about how much of your homemade pectin to use with the fruit you picked or bought would be meaningless. Both would vary considerably.
    So, instead, I’ll tell you how to figure out the right formula for your own pectin. Here are the questions to answer:
    How much pectin is in the fruit that you are using to make jam, jelly or preserves?
    As we learned on this page about pectin, some fruits naturally have more or less pectin than others. For example, if you are making strawberry jam, you will need to use more pectin (of any kind) than if you are making blackberry jam, since blackberries naturally contain more pectin than strawberries. See this page for the pectin content of fruits.
    How ripe is the fruit?
    generally speaking, the more ripe the fruit is, the lower the pectin levels are.
    How concentrated is your homemade pectin?
    No one, but you, knows or determines this. When you make your own pectin, you’re the manufacturer, you control the production line, the quality control, etc., so only you will know, largely from practice, how much of your pectin to use.
    That’s the bottom line! As you make the first batch, and are ready to fill the jars; first remove a spoonful of the jam, and hold an ice cube against the bottom of the spoon to cool the jam. If the spoonful sets to your liking, you can fill the jars, seal them and process them in the water bath canner. If the spoonful does not set, add another cup of sugar, 1/4 cup of lemon juice and more of your pectin, bring to a full boil for 1 minute, and test again!


    Mar 8, 2011 | 12:46 pm

  21. Carolina Fuentes says:

    Making jam without pectin, here’s my take on it. To preserve color, don’t add the sugar with the mangoes. Boil the macerated mangoes until much of its juice has evaporated before adding sugar. Its actually the burnt sugar that turns the jam, brown.

    Jun 8, 2011 | 12:08 pm

  22. Marketman says:

    Carolina, I don’t think the pectin has ANYTHING to do with the color. Pectin is what helps the jam jell. As for the color, many fruit jams are cooked for not very long, hence preserving the color. It is mostly the Filipino mango jaleya type preparations that turn the mango nearly deep brown, on purpose, I gather. The long cooking time does indeed remove all the moisture and starts to caramelize the sugars. But as for macerating the mango in sugar, it is ABSOLUTELY essential, in my opinion, and that of many jam cookbook authors, as it extracts FLAVOR and FLUID from the fruit, making the jam a better product. Depth of flavor is something one seeks in good jam, not just sweetness.

    Jun 8, 2011 | 12:31 pm

  23. Airah says:

    Can I buy Pectin in SM Megamall? Or anywhere in Manila?

    Jan 23, 2012 | 6:59 pm

  24. Diane Ayres says:

    My mangos are very sweet ,isn’t there some way to make a preserve without adding all that sugar?

    Jun 27, 2012 | 8:25 am


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