Summer Delight - Strawberry Jam
Jams are thick, sweet spreads made by cooking crushed or chopped fruits with sugar. Here are some tips for making great jam.
· Accurate measurement of all ingredients is essential.
· Use the pectin called for in the recipe. Do not substitute another type of pectin than what is called for in the recipe.
· Add ¼ teaspoon of butter to the berries and pectin mixture prior to adding sugar. This will reduce foaming.
· Many recipes call for stirring the hot mixture for three to five minutes after removing the pan from the heat source and before pouring jam into jars. This will prevent the fruit from floating once the product is preserved.
· If using frozen berries, make sure they are not sweetened prior to freezing.
· Process jars in a water bath canner unless you are making freezer jam.
With strawberry season in full swing in Northeast Wisconsin, it is time to preserve those berries for the long winter ahead. The following recipe is from the University of Wisconsin-Extension publication, Making Jams, Jellies & Fruit Preserves. I make this jam recipe throughout the year and the jam always turns out great.
Strawberry Jam5 cups crushed strawberries
7 cups sugar
1 box powdered pectin
¼ teaspoon butter
1. Wash jars. Place in hot water as well as flat lids.
2. Fill water bath canner ½ full with water and bring to a boil.
3. Wash strawberries. Remove stem and cut off any damaged areas.
4. Place strawberries in bowl and crush with potato masher. Measure out 5 cups and put in sauce pan.
5. Measure sugar and set aside.
6. Stir powdered pectin into strawberries. Add ¼ teaspoon butter to reduce foaming.
7. Quickly bring fruit-pectin mixture to a full rolling boil, stirring constantly. At once, stir in sugar. Continue stirring and bring back to a full boil. Boil hard for one minute, stirring constantly. Skim off foam.
8. Remove pan from heat source and stir for five minutes.
9. Quickly ladle hot fruit mixture into hot sterilized half-pint jars, leaving 1/2 inch head space. Wipe jar rims and threads clean with wet paper towel. Place flat lids in top of jar and screw the bands firmly, but not too tightly.
10. Place jars in water bath canner. Process for five minutes. Remove jars from canner and place in cooling rack. Let set 24 hours before storing.