The first time I had this jam was in Ruseștii Noi last summer when Maria put it over vanilla ice cream. I was very skeptical, so I ate the syrup but skipped the walnut (mainly because I didn’t know that’s what it was). When we got to our current village, L and E explained what it was, that it made from unripened walnuts. Finally understanding what it was, I decided to try some. It was so good. When June came around, Curt and I went to pick some green walnuts from the hundreds of walnut trees lining the streets in our village.When picking walnuts for jam, remember… smaller is better.

5-6 kg green walnuts
2 kilograms sugar
1.5 liters water

Peel the walnuts with a knife. A peeler will not peel deep enough. Be sure to wear gloves because the walnut skins turn your hands black. Put the center in a bowl of water, and discard the skins. Cut in half the bigger walnuts. Soak the walnuts for 4 hours. Change the water and repeat 2 more times, each time soaking for 4 hours. After they have soaked, pour the sugar into the pot of water. When it starts to boil, add the walnuts. When it boils, turn it to low for 4 hours. It should be slightly boiling. Transfer the jam to jars and seal them up.

I wore gloves, but my fingers stayed this color for two weeks.