How to Make Jam
Making Jam was initially daunting and confusing to me. Well, lets be serious- it was completely intimidating and even down right scary. All that boiling water? All that goopy stuff. What’s that stuff called? Pectin?
So mostly I just “let” my mom do it for me.
Now that I have made jam the last several years, I can’t believe that my mom made all that jam for me! It is a total labor of love. But after a full day of jamming, I could not be more pleased to have all of this gorgeous jam to eat all winter long. In our case, there is also plenty for gifts throughout the year and over the holidays. (I will be sure to feature these types of “gifts” come the holidays.)
We made apricot jam, plum jam, blackberry jam, mixed berry and raspberry jam. Yes. It was a very busy day! But it was also special. My mom and I were able to spend the whole day together, (even if it was a sweaty, profanity laced day!) and my girls got to see how jam is made. (don’t worry, I didn’t swear when they were around- just when the boiling water spit at me ☺)
To my mom’s credit, we decided to bake homemade white bread simultaneously! I was slathering the skimmed off jam onto bread as quickly as the bread was coming out of the oven, (but that post is for next week) All in all, it was a wonderful day and we are fully stocked for the winter!
While we made all of those types of jam, I am including the recipe fro raspberry or blackberry. However you can use any fruit you want and the fruit/sugar/pectin ratio’s will be on the pectin container. Just follow my process below for (easy and foolproof) instructions on how to make jam!
Berry Jam, makes 8 cups
5 cups berries (crushed) (with raspberries this could be 7-8 cups, with blackberries with are denser, it will be 6-7 cups)
7 cups sugar
1 packet pectin
Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
Place clean jars and lids in the boiling water and let them boil in there while you make the jam.
Hand smash the berries, (I used a potato masher) until they are crushed and equal about 5 cups.
Place the berries in a large heavy pot over medium heat.
Bring the berries to a simmer and add the sugar.
Stir to combine.
Bring the berries and sugar to a rolling boil.
Add the pectin and stir to combine.
Return the berries to a boil and then shut the heat off.
Using a ladle, skim the foam off of the top of the jam.
(I treat the foam like freezer jam and keep it in the fridge for a few days for spreading on toast.)
Remove the lids and jars from the pot of water with tongs or canning tongs.
Ladle the jam into the jars, almost to the very top.
Wipe the top of the jar with a damp cloth (make sure there is no jam on the seal.)
Place the lids on the jars and screw them shut.
Using the canning tongs, place the jars in a second big pot of boiling water and let them boil about 10 minutes.
Remove the jars from the boiling water and set them on a heat proof surface.
Leave the jars undisturbed for about 24 hours while the jam sets up.