I love jam. And, Joey Tribbiani loves jam. So, if he ever comes over, then I will now have a supply ready. [Friends tv show reference]
I grew up with my grandma and mom making homemade jam--the kind you slave over a boiling hot stove for hours and have to make sure everything is sterilized. You know...the kind I don't want to make and thus never have made. But, then, I found this recipe for freezer jam that does NOT involve heat or slaving or even sterilization. I'm beyond giddy. :)
This recipe can be found on the pectin package or at www.freshpreserving.com
1 pkg of Freezer Jam Pectin (I used Ball's)
1 1/2 cups of sugar or Splenda
4 cups of fruit--I used 2 1/2 pounds of strawberries and it measured to 4 cups crushed; however the directions say to use 4-1lb containers of strawberries.
Step 1: Crush the fruit. I used strawberries. Rinse them and cut off the stems. Put them in a bowl and mash them. You can use a potato masher, which after carefully searching my well organized drawers in the kitchen, I apparently do not have one. [My drawers are no longer organized.] So, I used my pastry blender but it was getting to be too much work. So, I pulled out my trusty food processor and just chopped them up in batches. Most people recommend that you do not puree them since jam is supposed to have chunks of fruit. However, I chopped them up small b/c my husband does not like chunky jam. :)
Step 2: Pour one package of pectin and the sugar into a bowl. Stir to mix.
Step 3: Add crushed fruit and stir for 3 minutes. Yes, three minutes. Set a timer...do not estimate. You can do it.
Step 4: Ladle into clean jars or freezable containers like Ziploc. Make sure that you leave at least a 1/2 inch of headspace in the containers. Put lids on the containers. I read some recommendations that you should not put them in huge containers because they will not set up well. Plus, you have to use the jam within 3 weeks of thawing, so use an appropriate size for your family's jam needs. :)
Step 5: Let sit for 3o minutes to thicken. Freeze for up to a year or refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.
This recipe yields about 5--8oz containers. [I did them in slightly larger containers because we eat a lot of jam and I didn't want a bunch of small containers in my freezer.]
That's it. It is super easy and based on the lick of my spoon--it's super tasty too. Plus, the price is not as bad as I would have thought compared to store bought jam. I already have lots of sugar from the sugar/koolaid coupon awhile back, got the berries at Sprouts for cheap, and the pectin was about $2 at Walmart. I used Ziploc containers that I bought with a coupon instead of canning jars--mostly because my Walmart only sells canning supplies at Christmas. Don't get me started. But, the Ziploc containers will be great and reuseable for anything.
So, now I need to make some more English Muffin Bread--I think I feel another post coming up soon! :)
4 years ago