This weekend I was at sams club and I bought 8 pounds of strawberries for $9! My family loves strawberries, so I know we'll eat a lot of them as snacks or in smoothies. Strawberries are extremely perishable, however, so I decided to preserve 4 pounds of them by making some jam! Here is my recipe.
Stellar Strawberry Jam
4 pounds fresh or frozen strawberries, rinsed and hulled.
1/2C bottled lemon juice
Steep the strawberries by mixing them with the sugar until the sugar has liquefied and then letting them sit, for 4 hours at room temperature. You can also let them sit in the fridge for up to 24 hours. Place the strawberry sugar mixture and the lemon juice in a large, heavy bottomed pot and bring to a rolling boil, stirring frequently. Cook at a rapid boil until the mixture reaches 220 degrees. Remove from the heat and skim off any foam. Ladle the jam into 3 or 4 sterilized pint jars, leaving 1/4 inch at the top and screw on the lids. At this point you can either can the jars or refrigerate them. Canning ensures a much longer shelf life, so that's what I always do. You can find detailed canning instructions online.
Beautiful Blackberry Jam
Peel, core and grate 1 granny smith apple. Mix with:
2 pounds blackberries
1Tbsp orange juice
Combine all ingredients in a large, heavy bottomed pot and boil rapidly until it reaches 220 degrees. Skim off any foam and ladle into 2 or 3 pint sized jars that have been sterilized, leaving 1/4 inch at the top. Screw on the lids and then can or refrigerate the jars.
My family loves these two jams, so I make a lot every Summer and we enjoy it all year. Our favorite uses for the jam, (besides spreading it on toast) are to mix it into yogurt or cream of wheat, use it to top pancakes and waffles, or even to top vanilla ice cream.