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Smashed Jams & More: Jam packed with love

Smashed Jams & More has Haarlem’s best small-batch, seasonal and entirely plant-based jams. Lindsay Ethier is the brain behind the Smashed Jams concept.

📸 Wilma den Hartigh

I asked Lindsay if I could spend time with her in her kitchen and she said yes! It was such a treat to see how she makes her blueberry, cinnamon and maple syrup jam (and I can confirm that it’s so delicious – I’ve already tried my jar on waffles, pancakes and toast!). Once you’ve tasted Lindsay’s products it will be difficult to settle for anything store-bought again.

In-between all the chopping, measuring and cooking she told me more about herself and what she loves about making jam.

What brought you to The Netherlands?

We moved from Virginia in the United States about three years ago for my husband’s job. I have a background in medical laboratory technology and when we moved I missed being busy and having purposeful work. I worked as a babysitter and looked after pets but that ended overnight with the Corona pandemic lockdowns. This gave me the push I needed to start Smashed Jams & More.

Why jam?

Our family enjoys grape jelly, a food staple for many American families. Peanut butter and jelly is a sandwich we would always eat. I couldn’t find grape jelly here so I decided to make it myself. Then I started experimenting with other flavour combinations, made some for friends to try out and that’s how it all started. Learning and playing in the kitchen became a source of relaxation and enjoyment for me. 

Which flavours are in your range?

I like to make seasonal products so there’s always something different in my range depending on the season. Taking advantage of the changing seasons allows me to exercise some creativity.

Thinking seasonally helps me look forward to each month and the celebrations and traditions that come along with it.  Cooking in step with nature’s rhythm inspires me and I always look forward to each season and the flavours that fit with it.

In summer I work with products such as blueberries, watermelon, nectarines, vanilla, rhubarb, raspberries, cherries and mint. In autumn/fall it is all about pumpkin, apple pie and cinnamon. In winter I love flavours such as fig and Earl Grey, cranberries and winter spices.

For Spring I draw inspiration from products such as Elderflower, herbs such ginger and white grapefruit. I really like working with herbs, spices and teas and experimenting with how they can complement what I’m making. I use a plant-based gelling agent and all products are dairy-free.

I’ve also expanded my range to include savoury products such mushroom pates, hummus and pineapple habanero. Unlike the jams these are not long shelf life products and they are made to order.

Where do you like shopping for ingredients?

  • De Botermarkt: Product quality is better and there’s always something different.
  • Haarlemsche Versmarkt at Marsmanplein in Haarlem North.
  • Mabrouk: I love supporting this family-owned business.

I try not to shop at large retail chains and rather support the smaller, independent retailers and markets.

Where do you enjoy eating in Haarlem?

I like simple food so a place like Friethoes in Kruisweg is one of my favourites. I love their spicy sambal mayonnaise. I also love the vegan tarts from By Lima. I like anything fried and spicy.

What do you enjoy about living in Haarlem?

Biking. I just love my bakfiets. I love the childhood my children can have here. I love being closer to nature in my daily life and this also inspires my cooking. Living here has taught me to embrace the seasons. In the US I would never have started a business like this. Here I have a closer network and I enjoy living in a close-knit community.

Connect with Smashed Jams & More on Facebook and Instagram. Lindsay also puts together beautifully-wrapped gift packs for all occasions.

Smashed Jams will taste delicious with one (or more!) scones from Bij Babette, Haarlem’s only English tearoom.

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