Saturday, April 10, 2010

Freezer Jam Memories Old and New

NewCameraApril2010_SpringBreak2010_ 181I always remember helping my mom make strawberry freezer jam as a kid and loving eating it (and not really enjoying store bought jam) so when I saw this post over at Our Best Bites on making strawberry jam (no cooking involved) and then I saw 1385_1A_FPstrawberries on sale (until Tuesday 4/13/10) at Stater Brothers for .69/lb I knew that I had to make some, and I’m glad I did because it is sooo easy and way delicious!
NewCameraApril2010_SpringBreak2010_ 184I decided to let the boys “help” me. That didn’t last long. They helped measure the sugar and then mashed for two or three minutes but it was too tricky for them. Oh well. They’ll be happy when they get this on their first PB&J!
That said, you need to head to Stater Brothers, pick up 2 or 3 lbs of strawberries (you need four cups of crushed strawberries which 2 lbs should do unless you have little helpers eating your cleaned cut up strawberries!) and pick up some Pectin (in the canning goods section). I got the Ball brand (instead of Sure Jell) this year which was cheaper (by half) and used less sugar than some of the others! I went and picked up NewCameraApril2010_SpringBreak2010_ 213more strawberries and pectin today because it was so easy and I want to have more jam in my freezer for later! 4 cups of jam won’t last that long in my house!)
One more note: I made it a second time…if you like chunky jam smash them with your potato masher if you want it smooth, blend it up in your blender! Or do half in your blender and half by hand; either way you’ll have delicious jam!
Update: This morning I was so anxious to eat it that I made biscuits from this recipe here on Homesick Texan (and they’re not too hard at all!) and put butter and jam on them. Talk about heaven! Yum-oh! I feel so domesticated! And if you noticed, I have two different colors of jam…while making NewCameraApril2010_SpringBreak2010_ 214bthe first batch (ahem) I run out of sugar and filled the last 1/4 c. with colored sugar from my cookie sprinkle shakers (see top picture). The left is straight sugar and totally pureed strawberries and too smooth. The top is too chunky. If I make a third batch I’m doing the half/half thing.

Update #2: The recipe depends on the pectin you buy. If you buy the Ball Brand it's 4 cups of smashed strawberries, 1 1/2 c. sugar and the pectin, stir for at least three minutes and then let it set for 30 mins and wa-lah! :) The recipe is on the bag! If you buy sure jell check out this post.

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