Thursday, May 15, 2008

Juicy Strawberry Freezer Jam

If putting up jam sounds about as remote as no-nonsense Aunt Martha on the ol' family homestead in a vintage floursack apron, think again. You don't have to live on a farm, or even have an Aunt Martha, to reap the benefits of homemade jellies, preserves, marmalades, jams and syrups. You don't even need sophisticated canning equipment. All you need is some fruit-strawberries in this case, lots of sugar, a box of pectin (and even that is not truly necessary), some clean jars and a freezer. It's easy, it's fast, it's cheap, and it's so much better than any jar you could buy at the store. You'll be bottling up the taste and smell of fresh spring strawberries. So, wait until your market has half-flats of strawberries on sale, and make a big batch. Then invite Aunt Martha to come over and have tea with jam and bread. Unless you don't have an Aunt Martha. I don't. But I'm sure somebody out there does, and I'm also sure she's going to love your jam.
Strawberry Freezer Jam:
Estimated Cost: $3.50 for about 6 cups
Notes: I'm going to include two recipes below; one is for traditional freezer jam, the other for my slight variation. I like my jam a little looser and more juicy than regular jam, so choose either version according to your taste.
The way I do it for juicy jam:
4 cups halved strawberries
4 cups sugar
1 (1.75 ounce) package pecting
3/4 cup water
Place berries and sugar in a large bowl; mash with potato masher and let stand for 10 minutes. In a small saucepan, boil water. Stir in pectin and boil one minute stirring constantly. Pour into strawberry mixture and stir until no sugar crystals remain. Leave out for 24 hours to set. Freeze for up to one year, or refrigerate for one month.

For traditional freezer jam:
2 cups crushed fresh strawberries (measure after crushing)
4 cups sugar
1 (1.75 ounce) package pectin
3/4 cup water
Follow the same method as above.
Coming this week:
Two recipes to use your strawberry jam


Michal said...

yum. can i just get the pectin at the grocery store? in which section?

Mary Kate said...

"Oh jam, I forgot all about the jam." I love jam. It's so sweet and bright! I've only made jam once in my life and that was when Heidi and I lived together in Provo. I have such happy memories of bottling, stirring, and smelling this delectable concoction. Thanks so much for the recipe. I would love to make it again. Can I have your rhubarb one too? It's just like candy.

Prudy said...

I buy "Sure-Jell" and it is located near the paper goods and storage containers and canning jars. You were-probably still are- the queen of getting a good deal on massive amounts of strawberries.

Prudy said...

I'm dying for rhubarb jam, too. I'm waiting to see if they have any rhubarb at the fruit stand that opens tomorrow. If not, I'm just going to pay the exorbitant amount and make a bunch. I promise you a bottle...and the recipe! E

The Renouf Family said...

Making jam always reminds me of Meg in Little Women...she wants to be the ideal wife with a stocked pantry of cute little jars of jam. She ends up at the end of the day filthy, in tears, and yelling at her husband....
Luckily Freezer Jam is much easier than the other stuff and I think it tastes better, too (fresher).
Thanks for the recipe and reminder.

Veronica said...

I've always wanted to make my own jam, but never have. I think I might just try-our local strawberries should be ready in a couple of weeks.

Anonymous said...

I can't wait to try my hand at jam. I've never made it before! Thanks for the recipe Prudy!

Jenny said...

oooo, it's been so long since I've made jam, but how beautiful does this look! I think it's time to get going! I love the picture of the sugar pouring into the strawberries!

My Ice Cream Diary said...

Am I the only person not making strawberry jam? I love it so much.

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