Walnut preserves are a traditional delicacy made from early, green walnuts. The preserves are highly prized, as their preparation is laborious and time-consuming.
Preparation time: 1 week
Cooking time: 1 day
Serves: makes 5-6 jars
1 kg/2.2 lb green walnuts
1.5 kg/3 lb 4 oz sugar
a few cloves or 1 tspn cardamon
500 g/1lb 4 oz of slaked lime (calcium hydroxide)
Wash the walnuts and remove the green shells.
Soak the shelled walnuts in cold water for 3 days, changing the water 3 or 4 times per day.
Prepare lime water by mixing 500 g/1lb 4 oz of slaked lime (calcium hydroxide) and 3 litres/5 pints 3 fl. oz of cold water. Mix the solution well, leave to settle for 3 to 4 hours, then filter the lime water.
Soak the walnuts in the lime water for 2 to 3 days, stirring them 4 to 5 times per day.
Remove the walnuts from the lime water and wash thoroughly. Pierce the nuts with a thick needle or fork and soak in cold water for another 3 days, changing the water 2 or 3 times per day.
Plunge the nuts into boiling water for 10 minutes. Remove and dry thoroughly.
Dissolve the sugar in 2.25 litres/4 pints of water to make a syrup. Bring to the boil, add the nuts, bring back to the boil and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside for 4 to 6 hours. Bring to the boil twice more, simmering fro 15 minutes and leaving 4 to 6 hours between each boiling. Add the lemon juice, cloves or cardamon after the last boil.
Bring back to the boil once more and simmer until the nuts are soft.
Put the nut jam into sterilized jars and seal.