If you haven’t made your own jam before, you’re really missing out! Nothing store-bought can compare to the look and taste of homemade freezer jam. And it’s crazy simple. Really. And you know what else? My top secret fool-proof recipe comes straight from inside the little box of pectin. It hasn’t failed me yet! Follow along and you’ll be licking your own glittering spoonful of summery super-sweetness in no time.
A few tips to begin with: use fresh, ripe in-season fruit that has been thoroughly rinsed. I’m using strawberries in this example, but raspberries, blueberries and apricots also work beautifully. You can use any strawberries you like, but I’m convinced that the small-ish imperfect ones like you find at the farm stand have a truer strawberry flavor than the gigantic kind you often find in grocery stores, and result in a better jam. If you prefer less sweetness, opt for low-sugar pectin and follow those instructions for tasty results. I simply prefer the look, texture and taste of the original.
Ingredients for this strawberry freezer jam:
4 cups of strawberries, rinsed and hulled (about 2-3 pints)
4 cups of sugar
1 box of regular pectin
3/4 cup waterMash your berries in a large bowl. I like this clear one with the measurments on the side so I can gauge my volume exactly. Really mash’em good. This is a great chance to involve your little ones in the kitchen, by the way. And, if you’re like me, you’ll choose to leave a few lovely bits of berry intact. Note: your 4 cups of whole berries should reduce down to 2 cups of mashed berries.
Add the sugar and stir well to combine. Let it sit for about 10 minutes, stirring once or twice.
Combine your water and pectin in a small pot on the stove and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil for one minute, stirring constantly. Then pour over the mashed berries and sugar.
Stir well for about 3 minutes until sugar is completely dissolved. If a few crystals remain, don’t fret. It’s normal. Transfer your beautiful ruby red mess to clean, dry freezer containers and set on the counter for 24 hours. You jam should thicken and set up to a lovely consistency. If for some reason yours doesn’t, well, hooray! You have homemade strawberry pancake syrup!. Don’t despair, just store and enjoy your syrup and try again, watching your measurements carefully.
Freeze for up to 1 year, or refrigerate up to 3 weeks. A slice of grainy wheat toast with butter and homemade jam is one of life’s sweetest comforts. This jam is also perfect on dinner rolls, pancakes, pound cake, waffles, scones, biscuits and of course, peanut butter sandwiches.