Saturday, September 10, 2011

Short on Sugar Strawberry Jam

I for some reason caught the canning bug a few weeks ago and really wanted to try to make jam.  After my first attempt, I figured it out!  We eat a lot of peanut butter and jam sandwiches, so it is not only cost efficient, but also way healthier...

What you will need...
  • Canning items (4 pint jars or 7 half pint jars; jar lifter; jar funnel; bubble remover/headspace tool; stock pot; tongs)
  • Other items for strawberry jam (medium pot; stirring spoon; potato masher or food processor; paring knife; cutting board; large glass liquid measuring cup; ladle)
  • 5 1/2 cups strawberries, pitted, diced, and mashed (about 3 1/2  - 16 ounce containers)
  • 1 cup water
  • 4 to 5 tbsps low sugar pectin (Ball brand)
  • 1 cup sugar
  1. Fill the stock pot 3/4 full of water and bring to a boil, then simmer.  Wash the jars and lids in hot soapy water.  Put the jars and lids (not the rings) into the simmering water.
  2. Hull and dice the strawberries.  Place into the glass measuring cup and mash/process a bit as you add strawberries until you get about 5 1/2 cups.
  3. In the medium pan, heat the strawberries, water, and pectin to a crazy boil; stirring continuously. 
  4. Add the sugar and return to a boil for a few minutes, stirring continuously.  When mixture gets to a rapid crazy boil and is impossible to stir down, continue for about a minute more.  Meanwhile...
  5. Remove jars and lids from the simmering water and get the funnel ready.
  6. Turn the stockpot water back to a boil.
  7. Remove the the jam from the stove and skim if necessary.
  8. Ladle the jam into the jars using the funnel.  Fill jars leaving 1/4 inch at the top.  If you have a jar that isn't filled all the way that is okay.  Just go ahead and let it cool, put the lid on, and put it in the frig to eat!
  9. Remove air bubbles.
  10. Clean the rim of the jars with a damp clean paper towel.
  11. Put the two-piece tops on the jar.
  12. Place jars in the boiling water.  Make sure water is 1 inch above the lids.  Cover and boil 10 minutes.
  13. Turn the heat off, remove the lid, and let the jars sit in the pan for about 5 minutes.
  14. Remove jars and set on a towel, an inch or two appart, for 12 to 24 hours. Don't touch them! 
  15. In 12 to 24 hours make sure the lids are sealed by pressing on the top...if the lid sealed you are good to go!  If not, simply put it in the refrigerator and enjoy it now.
  16. Remove rings and clean jar before storing.  Be sure to date the jars and label them. Store in a cool (50 to 70 degrees F), dark, dry place for up to a year. 

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