Soft and somewhat imperfect fruit may be used. If in the basket of fruit bought for canning or preserving there are some fully ripe or poorly shaped specimens, these may be used for jam. For jam proper allow a pint of sugar to a pound of fruit. Cook the fruit with enough water to prevent its sticking to the kettle, using as little as possible.
Mash the fruit by stirring it occasionally as it cooks. When the fruit is soft, add the sugar, stir thoroughly, and cook gently for about five minutes. Test by cooling a spoonful on a saucer. The jam should thicken slightly. When ready, pour it into jelly glasses, or somewhat larger earthen jars - "jam pots." Seal, as directed for jelly.
The fruit butter is even more like fruit sauce than is the jam, for it is softer than jam, and contains less sugar. A cup or only a half cup of sugar to the pound of fruit is enough. Proceed exactly as in jam-making.
Apple butter may be flavored with spices, with ginger root and lemon juice, and with other fruits. One or two quinces or a slice of pineapple cooked with the apples gives a pleasing variety. Exercise the inventive faculty here.