Written by Sue, Wednesday, May 7, 2014,Sunny, very warm, so nice, temps. high 80's
Our Strawberries are now producing, so what does one do with a big bowl of berries, make jam of course. If you don't grow your own , there are a lot of "pick your own farms" and local farmers markets. I am one of those who believes in supporting local farmers, besides the produce is always fresher.
Here is how I made mine, going from left to right and skipping the middle photo. ~smile~
Pick berries, wash and drain them, sterilize the jars in dishwasher, place berries in food processor and pulse, measure in pot, add sugar and lemon juice, put on heat and cook, once the berries begin to boil you will notice foam on top, just place a big helping pat of butter in pot, the foam will dissipate, well almost, cook until jam sheets off of spoon or until the desired consistency, scoop into sterilized jars, wipe tops with clean wet cloth, then place sterilized caps and rings on and tighten, place into the boiling water bath, process for 12 minutes.
This bowl of berries when chopped measured 16 cups of berries.
I added 8 cups of sugar,(this time around I used organic sugar,) sounds like a lot I know, but jam really has a lot of sugar, when it starts to cook you might want to taste to see if it is sweet enough for you,What's that you say "more sugar" don't laugh after all, the berries determine how much. ~smile~
juice of 2 lemons
1 pat of butter.
And the secret ingredient is "Love".
That's it, easy peasy. The yield was 8 1/2 pints, in jelly jars that would have been double, ~grin~
Tip: you might want to put the jam in decorative jars for gift giving, I will be doing this next time, but these will be going to my family who live far away. Hopefully I will remember to share some ways to make them more appealing, but you really don't need anything the "Jam" speaks for itself.
I can't remember when I last used Sure Jell, I am trying to keep everything as organic as possible, and to me there is a taste difference, having said that, feel free to use Sure jell, it certainly is quicker.
I on the other hand take the time when stirring the pot to meditate, pray for loved ones, and listen to my favorite radio station, music always makes everything so much better.
A word of encouragement to those who have never made jams and jellies, this process might seem a little over whelming to you, but trust me, it really is easy and so satisfying, as long as I have been doing this I always get such a wonderful feeling when I take the jars out of the water bath canner, and I hear the pop, pop, sound of them sealing, but the best reward is when someone says'"Wow! this is the best jam ever,"just as Dh did yesterday, as I always save him some, and just think you made it with your own loving hands!
Just to prove how quickly this is, it only took 2 1/2 hours,from the time I brought the berries to the house, and they were sitting on my counter, time well spent!