I was surprised how fast and easy it was to make preserves this way. In the morning, I poured the fruit and juice, which had spent the night in the pantry after being brought to a bare boil the day before, into a fine-holed colander and collected the liquid in a pot. Here's what the fruit looked like. You could certainly enjoy eating it just like this:
I set the pot on high heat to boil the liquid. I got the instant-read thermometer out. By the time the syrup came to a boil, it was already up over 100ºC. In a minute or two, the thermometer read as high as 106. The goal was to get it up to 105, which is 221ºF, well above the boiling point of water. So I put the reserved plums into the pot with the syrup.
It didn't take more than 3 or 4 minutes for the mixture to get back up to 105ºC again. It was time to spoon the confiture into sterilized jars and seal them with sterilized lids. I ended up with four jars of preserves plus a little extra for the refrigerator. I'll have to taste it this morning.
The preserves look really good in the jars. You can see the pieces of plum suspended in their own jelly. You'll notice that I put the preserves up in Bonne Maman "jelly" jars, but this is not a product I bought at the supermarket! C'est moi qui l'ai fait.
P.S. It's really raining this morning and our area is under a weather warning for heavy rain and flooding. We live fairly high up on a hill, and our roof isn't leaking, so I think we'll ride it out. Officially, the warning covers two departments, the Indre et the Cher, and we live about 5 miles from the border of the Indre. I'm sure the Cher River, which flows down at the bottom of our road, is going to get pretty full of water coming from upstream. This is already an August for the record books, I'm afraid.