Several weeks ago, the family went strawberry picking. Not all the family was excited about strawberry picking but the little one were very excited once they understood what to do.
So with the bounty of strawberries, I started this season’s first canning session.
Add 4 cups of sugar and ¼ c of lemon juice. Now you can make the jam without pectin at this point. I added pectin because I had it on hand.
My gorgeous Mauviel jam pot filled with strawberries filled with the jam mixture.
Bring the jam to 220 degrees, stirring the whole time. This step takes a long time. Remember water boils at 212 degrees so you are boiling off enough water to raise the temperature to 220. It took me 30 minutes to get the jam up to this temperature, on a gas range.
Now, I keep three spoons in the freezer and when the jam reaches the 220 degrees, take a spoon out of the freezer, put a small amount on the spoon and place back in the freezer for two or three minutes. Then you can test if your jam is the right consistency.
When it is, remove from the burner. Now this next step is controversial, but I read this book and was convinced to try this method and it has worked several years for me. I place sterilized jars in the oven for 250 degrees for about 30 minutes. When I am ready to fill the jam, I remove the jars and fill them carefully. Make sure your top of the jars were clean. Once the jars are filled and the rims are cleaned, place the lids and rings on the jars. Place back in the oven for another 30 minutes. I shut off the oven but I like to remove the jam and as the jars cool, you can hear the lids pop as the vacuum seal sets in. I always count the number of pops to make sure all the jars are sealed.
The fruits of our bounty. Now we have the first gifts of the holiday season.