Thursday, June 2, 2011

Strawberry [freezer] Jam

Jam is another one of those things that I make a jumbo batch of once a year & then keep in the freezer so I always have good, homemade, preservative free stuff on hand. I used to be intimidated by the thought of making jam but then I discovered the beauty (and deliciousness!!) that is freezer jam! There are several different fruits that would make good jam but our personal favorite is strawberry. And, as a bonus, I can get a huge bag of frozen, hulled, always perfectly ripe bag of strawberries at Costco for a really great price (6 pounds for $9 - that's $1.50/pound!). Just make sure you thaw them first!

Here's all you need:

Fruit, sugar & pectin. Isn't that such a perfect, simple list!? You know what's in this jam - and none of it is scary! LOL

This is the pectin I use for this jam. It's instant - or labeled as freezer jam pectin.

If you use frozen fruit just be sure it's thawed before you start. Just mash away at it with a potato masher until a bowl of this...

... becomes a bowl of this! A few remaining chunks are not a big deal - just try to get most of it mashed up really well.

Once that is all good & soupy stir together your sugar & pectin.

Then dump the mixture into your crushed fruit & stir it well - for about 2 minutes.

Transfer that into your mason jars. A single batch will fill 3 pint (16oz) jars. Of course I did this one times 5 so I ended up with 15 jars of the good stuff! It's not all for us, though - I love giving a jar of this jam with a loaf of fresh baked French bread to the teachers as a gift - either for Christmas or, like I'm doing this year, for an end-of-the-year treat.

Once it's in the jars let it sit out on the counter for 30 minutes to set up.
It will keep in the fridge for about a month or in the freezer for a full year.

I love this on fresh bread, toast, even spooned over vanilla ice cream! It's really yummy.

Strawberry [freezer] Jam:

4 cups crushed fruit
1 pkt. Instant pectin
1 1/2 cups sugar

Combine sugar & pectin. Stir into the crushed fruit. Mix thoroughly; about 2 minutes. Pour into jars & allow to sit on the counter for 30 minutes.

Store in the fridge up to a month or in the freezer up to a year.

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