Strawberry and apricot jam

Makes approximately 1kg (2lb)

I love making jam. I find it comforting and immensely satisfying. The idea that you can lay down certain fruits to enjoy later in the year is lovely to me. I think sourdough bread makes the best toast of all and, of course, sweet unsalted butter is the perfect accompaniment.

500g/1lb English apricots
500g/1lb English strawberries
1 lemon, roughly chopped
1kg/2lb caster sugar

I have to admit that, the last time l made my strawberry and apricot jam, I slightly burnt it because I didn't stir it often enough. But as it happens it just gave the jam a delicious caramel flavour. So if you burn it slightly, don't worry.

Start by hulling the strawberries and cutting them into quarters. Next, split the apricots in half, removing the kernels (you may, if you like, add a few to the jam). Place the apricots, strawberries and chopped lemon into a heavy-based saucepan and pour over the sugar.

Place over a gentle heat and stir the sugar through until it has begun to melt. Once this happens turn up the heat and cook at a much faster pace for about 20 minutes, stirring every so often. This helps to prevent it from sticking and burning in the pan. Pour into sterilised jars. Allow to cool and refrigerate.