Friday, August 29, 2014

Strawberry Jam

With the last of summers bounty sitting on my kitchen counter, I can only think of yesterdays baking of rustic bread sitting nearby...lonesome and yearning to be slathered with fresh homemade strawberry jam.  Perfect for my morning coffee. And the other jars for fall and a long winter of cold mornings.
Makes 8 1 cup Jars
5 cups strawberries, stems removed, cored and crushed
3 teaspoons grated lemon peel
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 box Fruit Pectin
1/2 teaspoon butter
7 cups  sugar
Just a note before I start with the directions. I want to add that I do not own a canning pot. My Grandmother is up in Heaven right now grimacing at these words. My answer to a canning pot is my big stock pot with two dish towels in the bottom. I use empty jars with no lids on them to fill any empty space if I'm only doing  three or four jars. Don't worry about it if your using more jars they will stand up right without falling over. It's just better if you can fill empty space to keep the jars from turning over when the water is boiling, etc. Also the dish towels act as a buffer between the jars and the heat of the burner.

Fill your stock pot or canner 1/2 full of water and bring to a boil. Immediately turn heat down to a simmer. Next, wash jars and bands in hot soapy water; rinse with warm water. Pour boiling water over flat lids and keep in a saucepan off the heat. Set jars in the pot of hot water until you're ready to use. Make sure they are dry before filling them with jam.   

Add the 5 cups of crushed strawberries, the grated lemon peel and lemon juice into a large sauce pan. Stir pectin into fruit.

Add butter and bring mixture to boil on high heat, stirring constantly. Stir in sugar. Bring to a boil again for  1 minute. Be careful. mixture can burn easily. You must stir constantly! Remove from heat. Skim off foam with a spoon.

Immediately ladle the strawberry jam into the clean, dry jars leaving 1/4 inch of room at the tops of jars. Dry jar rims and glass threads thoroughly. Dry rims and lids and screw tightly onto jars. Place jars on in prepared canner rack or into stock pot. Lower rack if using a canner.  Add boiling water, covering the jars by 2 inches, Cover pot and bring water to a boil. Process for 10 minutes.

Remove jars and place upright on a towel, Allow to cool completely. You can check the seal of the jar by pressing the middle of  the lid with your finger. If the lid springs back they are NOT sealed and must be refrigerated. 

Adapted from Kraft.