I started wanting a jam that is a. Tangy and b. With some bite. So I read tons of blogs before I commenced. Please read the good information from travelling foodies, table for 2, kitchen tigress, Nasi Lemak lover.
Start with choosing an unripe pineapple that is all green on the outside, it may be more efficient for you to do 2 at a go. Don’t remove the core because it will add to the fibrous texture.
Also, the resulting paste is very suitable for open-faced tarts which are baked further in the oven. It is definitely still too wet for closed tarts, so fry it longer till it turns a browner shade. Use this as a reference where the pineapple has been baked.
2 pineapple (1.3 kg when peeled and eyes removed)
180g sugar (this is considered less sweet, and will shorten the life of the tart)
1-2 small cinnamon stick
1/2 – 1 star anise
5 blades of pandan leaves
Peel pineapple and remove eyes. Chop into small pieces.
Puree with a blender till fine. Place all into a wide wok (no pots, you need the surface area to evaporate the water) and add in the cinnamon stick.
On medium to high heat, boil the purée. It will not burnt easily, just keep an eye and stir occasionally.
When about 80% or liquid has boiled away (in about 20 – 30 min) and paste looks fibrous like the picture on the above right, add in the sugar. It will become liquidy again.
Now turn heat to low and keep closer watch over the paste as the sugar will caramelised and then burn. Spread out the paste as you stir to allow liquid to evaporate faster. Press down with the spatula.
Paste will be ready in another 40 min or so, after adding sugar. See picture on above right. Total time is about 1 hr and 10 min. Some signs are:
– it’s definitely drier, no liquids pooling at the bottom.
– texture is not so liquidy, more like plasticine, stirring is harder.
– fibrous strands start to stick out.
Scoop out paste and cool in a clean bowl, it will harden and darken further. Cool in fridge before using for pineapple tarts.