I am very sad to say that Plum Tree Jam won’t be popping up at Portland-area farmers markets anymore—or at least for the moment. The markets have been a wonderful, inspiring, renewing constant for us for a few years now—rain or snow or 100-degree days, we were out there with the best of 'em—but they just don’t make financial sense for Plum Tree Jam. And yes—as you might imagine—the catalyst for this realization was the birth of my sweet son last December. The markets were a break-even endeavor for me, but they were a wonderful way to be part of the local food community and to meet so many Portlanders who care about good, local food and supporting local agriculture. However, now that I have to juggle the demands of Motherhood—and the tug on the heartstrings that I feel every moment that I am away from my baby—along with Plum Tree, I feel that every working moment must really, really count. To stay in business and keep making the very best, handmade, pectin-free jams I can, and to continue to buy fruit that I believe in from people I (and you, too, I know!) admire, means that I have to make enough money to stay afloat. It's just the cold, hard truth and it's been a hard realization to swallow. It was with a heavy heart that I parted ways with my booth at the Hollywood Farmers Market, and my beloved King Neighborhood Farmers Market. I hope that my market friends and customers will understand. Local Portland people can always order via my website shop, and I am often happy to make deliveries. We will also continue to pop up at larger local events like the Portland Night Market, Craft Wonderland, and the like. Following us on Instagram is the best way to stay in the loop. You can also find our jams all over town at delectable shops like Tender Loving Empire, Made Here PDX, Alder & Co, and Elephants Deli.
Please continue to shop at these wonderful markets, and we will see you there as a fellow shopper!
Meet our new gift boxes
! Tied up with a shiny red bow, they contain 3 2-ounce jars (a selection of our most popular berry jams, from Tay and Loganberry to Raspberry-Rhubarb and Olallie). Also exceedingly festive, our Spiced Cranberry jam
got a minor facelift this year thanks to the addition of Bluebird Alpine Liqueur from our friends at Thomas & Sons Distillery. Plus all the lovely berry jams are in good supply (for now!) and don't forget, we're happy to include a gift note in any order, just let us know what you'd like it to say at check out.
In the spirit of the season, rather than offering holiday discounts, we will be donating 10% of sales (now through December 25th) to FoodCorps
, a national organization that connects kids to healthy food in high-needs schools via hands on cooking classes, school gardens, and healthy cafeteria meals so they can lead healthier lives and reach their full potential. We think they’re doing great work, and it’s an honor to give back in a way that extends beyond just our participation in our local food system. We hope you will agree!
Thank you jam lovers, new and old, for an incredible 2016 berry season! With summer winding down and the farmers markets returning to a calmer sort of state—and some even closing down for the year—the time is right for a bit of a getaway. Actually, it's a family reunion AND a vacation, all rolled into one. In Italy, no less! We'll be in the Tuscan countryside for a bit, and we'll end with a few glorious days in the Eternal City. We hope to return re-charged and newly inspired—perhaps you'll even see our travels influence in new jams in the coming months! Because of this great adventure we feel so lucky to embark on, orders placed after Sept. 15th will not be filled until (but will be filled by) October 1st.
We apologize for any inconvenience and we wish you all a lovely autumn!
Ciao, jam lovers! Adventure calls!
HAPPY DANCE! BERRIES ARE BACK! HAPPY DANCE! BERRIES ARE BACK!
Thanks for waiting, all you wonderful jam lovers!
It's true! I am a completely crazy person and launched this wonderful, growing baby of a company just a few months into planning my wedding. And now, the big day is here! I wish I could make jam AND get married all at the same time, but even I am not quite superpowerful enough to do that. So, my dear jam-lovers, I am going to go a bit silent for the next two weeks (you'll have me back by Valentine's Day) while I get myself good and wedded to my lovely fiancé (plus a honeymoon for good measure). Yay! Drink some champagne for me if you can, where ever you may be, and I will be back before you know it. Spring is near, and with it will come a host of new flavors and exciting news! So, pop that bubbly—I certainly plan to—and I'll see you on the other side!
I'd like to tell you all about the Good Food Awards 2015, but they were 100% killer and I am 100% exhausted. The big news is that I WON!! And of course, as usual, by "I" I mean we! The award is really shared with farmers who grow these incredible berries that make my jam what it is, my mother, who has been a lifelong supporter of my dreams and flights of fancy, my dad, who is thrilled to find that he's not the only small businessperson in the family after all, and my fiancé David, who has been a longtime supporter of me and who has very kindly (and much to my delight) signed up to become a lifelong supporter.
I was awarded this amazingly large and self-defense-worthy medal (see above) for my Tayberry Jam—the first jam I made after becoming an official jam maker (as opposed to an enthusiastic hobbyist). It was a huge honor, particularly when I looked up and down the line of my fellow "Preserves" category winners and saw nothing but incredible people. Alice Waters herself placed it around my neck and I basically can die now.
But seriously, the awards ceremony was such a pure pleasure to just be at. The thoughtful, inimitable Mark Bittman gave an inspiring (and inspired) opening address on the idea of good food—the kind that the Good Food Awards celebrates—as protest. As revolution! He spoke to the food system in this country and to its brokenness, and reminded me why I am doing what I am doing. He talked about supporting farmers, and paying fair prices. Respecting food and its provenance—producing incredibly delicious food in a responsible way, food that people can trust, and in doing so cultivating a culture that reveres good food. Sometimes, alone in the kitchen at the end of a long day over the hot jam pots, it is easy to forget—if momentarily—why I am doing this. Mark Bittman reminded me. I could not wait to get back in the jam kitchen!
A lot of fellow Portland people were there to accept awards, which was a thrill, too! The wonderful David Briggs of Xocolatl de David was there to accept for his (deliciously Crunch-bar-like) Sourdough & Olive Oil bar. The Olympic Provisions guys—who, incidentally are doing my wedding rehearsal dinner in just about 2 weeks!—were there to accept an award for their Salami Etna. They graced us with a little GFA-themed song, which was exactly what we needed well into hour #2 of speeches and not a drop of alcohol in sight. Catch a look & a listen here. In that teeny part that cuts out he's singing "Good Food, good friends, let's fight the good fight 'til the end." I mean, come on—inspiring stuff! Seriously, how am I lucky enough to be amongst these shiny, passionate, heart-driven people?
Sitting next with my fellow preserves winners was a treat, too. I got to talk with Lemon Bird Preserves (as well as her adorable parents, who are adorable) whose pickles & preserves I have loved since my days at Mouth.com (her pickled cocktail tomatoes are unreal), and I also got to chat with the very lovely Dafna from bay area-based INNA jam, who is sort of a small batch jam mogul as far as I'm concerned. Also, she makes shrubs and those are just crazy good. John from Ohio's Black Radish Creamery gave the acceptance speech on behalf of all of us crazy jammers and pretty much just nailed it right off the bat by opening with a little jam-maker humor and playing "Jammin'". The jam jokes Do. Not. Get. Old.
After the ceremony, my fiancé and I partied it up with my mom and her lovely gentlemen friend, and my picture was on this big screen with all the other winners and it was totally insane and it went to my head even though I tried not to let it. Tip toeing on the clouds! When our coaches became pumpkins once again, we headed home on the trolley through the balmy SF night and giggled our way to sleep. Needless to say it was a memorable night.
Saturday was the bustling and crazy-busy GFA Winners Marketplace at the Ferry Buildling and if you came by I probably explained to you what tayberries are and hopefully I didn't sound like a zombie. I was a zombie, but I think my table—my first ever!—was sort of adorable! I spruced it up with a lovely piece of fabric from Bolt Fabric, a shop just down the street from me here in Portland and it looked like this:
I had such fun watching people enjoy the Tayberry jam—a rare treat for me as I usually just pop the jar in the mail and hope that whoever's mouth it ends up in is a happy one. We celebrated with good cocktails and great friends and now it's back to the kitchen!
Thank you all for being awesome and for loving jam and good food!
Warm-fuzzies and all the best,
Because it's official: PLUM TREE JAM IS A GOOD FOOD AWARDS FINALIST!!
Full disclosure, I've known about this for a little while now, but I haven't been able to share it with you until today!!! I'm incredibly honored to be recognized so early in the game! My jam was blind-tasted by some pretty amazing palates, and next to many, many worthy entries and somehow, they decided that mine was uniquely delicious. Wow. Pretty floored.
Check out all of the 2015 Good Food Awards Finalists here. I know that I am in good company because we not only had our wares blind-tasted, but we also all went through a very rigorous vetting process. Winners will be announced in January, so keep your fingers crossed, and in the meantime, cheers!
yours in jam,
Prepare your heart to be thoroughly melted! Exceptionally adorable things have happened to our jam lately—namely that it has been gobbled up by some of the cutest human beings ever. See below, Fig. 1 and Fig. 2.
Fig. 1: Holman, who prefers his boysenberry jam lumpy with berries (which is great, because that's how we feel, too), and spread all over homemade pancakes.
Fig. 2: Maya! We finally got to meet our friends' gorgeous little nugget, who—as we discovered—is a BIG fan of jam. She'd been pretty fussy all afternoon, but when that Triple Crown berry-coated jam spoon touched her lips, all that changed. Parents, take note!
Wishing you a week full of cuteness and jam!
Hello jam lovers of the world! I can't believe this day is finally here—Plum Tree Jam is up and running at last! After many months of hard work, and years of dreaming, it's really real. I'm so excited to share my jams with you! Thank you for coming to this jammy little corner of the internet, I hope you enjoy yourself while you're here.
Welcome all you wonderful people, and enjoy!
Yours in berry-goodness,
Miranda (jam-maker, berry picker, champagne-lover)