Thursday, June 06, 2013

Strawberry Jam, Round Two

After my first, sugarless, way-too-tart-for-PBJ batch of strawberry jam, I staged a second attempt. This one was much better.

Step one: pick the strawberries on a warm, sunny day. Eat as many as you want, because you went overboard yet again. 


Step two: hull the strawberries and give them a good rinse. Hull, I have learned, is just a fancy word for cutting off their little green hats. Share the tops with your chickens.



Step three: mash the strawberries (five cups) and combine with 1/4 cup of fresh squeezed lemon juice. Bring to a boil.



Step four: While you're doing all of this, bring your canning jars and lids to a simmer. I do this in the same pot that I'll be processing the jars in, because why heat up two different pots of water?


Step five: Add 7 cups of sugar to the strawberry mixture, mix until it's dissolved. Bring to a rolling boil for one minute, then remove from heat. 

Step six: Fish the jars out of the water, and bring the water to a full boil. Funnel the jam into each jar, leaving 1/4 of room at the top. Screw on the lids until they are "finger tight." 

Step seven: Once the water is boiling, carefully put the jars in and boil for ten minutes. (These steps require a lot of moving parts, a lot of hot glass, and a big pot of boiling water - hence, I did not pause to take photos, because I did not want to scald myself.) 


Step eight: Remove jars from boiling water and place on a towel on the counter. Let them cool and set for 24 hours. Listen to the sound of the lids popping and sealing one by one, and realize that canning is not nearly as scary as you once thought. 

Next up: pickling! 

4 comments:

  1. How exciting. You are getting my blood boiling to try making strawberry jam again.

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  2. I really want to try this so bad! I have never canned jam before by myself. I love strawberry jam, so hopefully I can go strawberry picking this summer and make my own jam to last through the winter!

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  3. Chrissy,

    Frist, thanks for respondig to my email so quickly the other day!

    Second, I also make jam and can food every year and I have a totally unsolicited tip for you that saves a step with jam....

    If you can be rather quick in the filling the jars and tightening the lids (i.e. while the jam is still really hot and the jars are also hot) you do not need to process them in the water bath. Because the jam is already hot and you are putting it into hot jars, it provides enough heat to seal the jars. I have actually never processed my jam. I just fill the jars, tighten the lids, and leave them sit and i always hear the pop... Every once in awhile (maybe one jar out of 3 batches of jam) I get a jar that doesn't seal (no "pop") and I just put that jar right into the fridge and eat it first!

    Obviously this method would not work for regular canning of food, but for the nearly boiling jam, it works! Let me know ehat you think!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Meaghan! That's a great tip, especially because a rolling boil for ten minutes in the summer is not the best part of making jam. ;)

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