Let's Jam

For all of you that have blackberries or strawberries or any berry and you want to make the absolute best, easiest jam I am about to show you how!

For blackberry jam or any fragile berry such as raspberries, first divide your berries in half.   Place half in a bowl and set aside.  

Put the other half in a heavy pot and place on the stove top.

Add 1/4 cup of sugar.  Don't be tempted to add more.  Taste your berries first.  If they are sweet you only want to add enough sugar to help with thickening and to bring out the taste.

Dump the sugar in and place the top on the pot.  Do not add anything else at this point!

Place the pot over medium to low heat and keep covered until the berries start to give up their juice.  

Zest half a lemon (just the yellow surface of the lemon) .

Add the lemon zest and about 1 teaspoon of fresh lemon  juice and stir gently to combine.

 It will start to foam and look like this.

The foam will thicken.

Then it will become clear again.

Run the spatula through the berries.  It should coat the spatula like this.

You should be able to run your finger across the spatula and it will leave a line.  This shows that it has thickened.  It will thicken even more as it cools.  This is a good time to taste it to see if it is sweet enough.  It should have a bit of tartness to it.  If you sweeten it too much you will lose the fresh berry flavor.

Now add the other half of the blackberries from the bowl.

Gently stir them into the cooked berries.  Let them sit for a few minutes to soften but they should retain their shape.

If you don't have one of these you should get one.  Right now!!!  You can find them on ebay or buy plastic versions wherever canning supplies are carried. These are called canning funnels.  As you can see they look a bit like  a tea cup with a hole in the bottom.  These save a lot of time and mess.  Unless you try to use them to drink tea.

Place the funnel in the mouth of your jar and ladle the jam into the jar.

I don't bother using canning jars for this because I keep it in the refrigerator.  it doesn't last long enough to bother canning it.  

Here is the same process for strawberry jam.  I posted this just so you can see it step by step.

Remove the green stems, duh! and cut the strawberries in half.  It doesn't matter how big the berries are.  If you cut them smaller they will get mushy and lose their shape.  Dump is about 1/4 cup of sugar.

Strawberries retain their shape very well so I do not separate them.  I cook them all together.

They will gradually  start to foam.

You will be able to see the foam thicken.  At this point small crowds may be forming at your front door having smelled the smell wafting from your house.  Tell them to go away and make their own damn jam!!!

I collect vintage jam pots.  Because if this isn't just the best thing you have ever tasted, I want it to look cute too.

Almost too cute to eat but not quite.  Yummo!!!!

So, in a short period of time you can have enough jam to get you through a few hours.  This stuff is really good on  ice cream too!

You can see how the strawberries still look like strawberries.  I could swim in this stuff.


Pricilla said…

Your sauce is on its way!
Prospero said…
Thanks for the recipes and the how-tos. Great pictures (can you make peach jam?)
"Waiter, there's a woman doing the backstroke in my stawberry jam!"
It looks as we are getting loads of black berries (we call them Bear berries over here), so if frost don´t destroy them first I´ll make a lot of blackberry jam over here this autumn. But I´ve never used lemon in my jam, so I´ll try that this year.

What a beautiful jam jar! Never seen anything like it over here!
Have a great day now!
Hibiscus Moon said…
Oh yum. Thanks for the jamming lesson.
Autumnforest said…
I just love when you share your recipes and how-to's. You have us all trying things we hadn't considered before. I finally found a place in Arizona that has strawberries that actually taste like strawberries (this place stinks at getting good berries). I wanted to freeze some, but I think I'll do jam with the rest. Thanks so much!
Touchatou said…
Amazing ! I tought it was to hard for me to make jams ! You explain it so well it looks like even I can make some ! Thanksssss !

And your jam pot is quite a beauty !
Carole said…
Jaz, very good post explaning how to do it. Thanks for stopping by and linking it in. Cheers