John Estep >> Jam’In Carmel Valley
It doesn’t take much – just a spoonful spread over a hunk of country bread or tucked into a pastry – for good apricot jam to cast its spell. Maybe the comfort of home that wraps around you, the cozy warmth of simple things are just illusions. But there’s something in the jam from Jam’In Carmel Valley that calls to you from an idyllic setting.
Chunks of apricot give the spread a rustic, homemade feel. And it is – Lisa Steiny’s family picks the fruit from their mid-valley orchard, the kids came up with the name and her father applies the magic touch. John Estep uses his mother’s recipes, which in this case involves just apricots, sugar, fruit pectin and a little butter for richness. And it’s that bit of substance that allows fruit-soaked sweetness to swell and sooth, coating the palate with pleasant notions of both fresh apricots and dense compote.
“We just started giving it out as gifts,” Steiny says. “People started coming back, ‘can I get some more of it?’ It’s a great family thing.”
It’s also a nice side business, with apricot and other flavors from Jam’In available at several specialty shops.
JAM’IN CARMEL VALLEY can be found at Bruno’s, The Village Market and other shops featuring local products.