You’ve never tasted Strawberry Jam until you’ve tasted the homemade and in season version. I hate to sound a bit dramatic, but it’s true.
I started canning and putting up my own jams earlier this year. It was the spring time call of fresh, seasonal berries that made me spend hours in the kitchen prepping my fruit and attempting the water bath method to seal and preserve my creation. Ever since then, I’ve been hooked, making chutneys, pickles, and butters. But Strawberry Jam is my favorite.
It is the perfect snack swirled into tangy Greek Yogurt or a great accompaniment to a Sunday morning croissant or scone. The ruby hued jars are also a wonderfully thoughtful present, something that Kate knows about, giving away some of her own personal batches as Christmas presents a few years ago.
Making jam and canning can be a daunting task when you first attempt it, but it’s something everyone can do. If this is your first time, I’ve got some great tips that I’ve shared on my own blog to get you started. If you don’t feel up to the canning process, you can just make your jam and freeze it or store it in the fridge. Just know that for food safety purposes, jars of jam can only be stored on the shelf if they have gone through a proper sanitizing water bath.
The recipe I’m sharing today is from Pippa’s book, Celebrate. I would assume that since this is a family recipe, it is the exact one Kate uses when making her jam. So grab your apron and a good knife, and let’s get jamming!
2 pounds of Strawberries, hulled
2 1/2 pounds of White Granulated Sugar
Powdered Pectin, follow packages instructions (you can usually find this with the canning jars at the store)
Put half of the strawberries in a non-reactive pot (either stainless steel or enamel-lined cast iron) and crush them lightly with a potato masher. Add the remainder of the Fruit, Sugar, and Pectin, and place on low heat on the stove, stirring until the Sugar has dissolved.
Turn the heat up to medium and bring to a boil for 5-7 minutes for a loose jam. I suggest you stir to prevent clumping and watch carefully for foam and overboiling. If you want a firmer set, cook for an additional 3 minutes. My tip would be that if you have a food thermometer, check the temperature for setting point for jam, 220F. This will ensure you get a firm set, but if you don’t have one and it’s runny, just call your jam a rustic syrup and put it on pancakes.
Remove your jam from the heat and use a funnel to put it into sterilized jars with lids if you are storing it in the refrigerator or freezer. If you want to preserve it for shelf storage, follow these guidelines for water bath canning. You will need to keep the jars in the bath for 10 minutes, adjusting the time for your altitude.
*** Shawn is a contributing writer for What Would Kate Do. She also writes her own blog, The Healthy Helping, sharing her favorite recipes and musings on food. ***