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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

How To: Strawberry Freezer Jam

I've never made jam in my life until a few weeks ago. It always intimidated me and seemed like a huge headache all around. But, I decided to finally solve the mystery and employed the help of my mom and we spent a Sunday evening making strawberry freezer jam. This recipe is delicious, tastes extremely fresh and isn't overly sugary........and you don't have to cook it over a hot stove! Shazaam.
To say it was easy and fuss free would be an understatement. It was actually fun to make! Especially with a partner working by your side. I made it by myself a week after and I turned on some Van Morrison to keep me company and it just wasn't the same.....and it took twice as long to do everything. "Many hands make light work." Did your mom say that to you too? If she did, then let's be friends!

You'll need:

FREEZER SAFE JARS (I used these half pint jars. I've seen them at EVERY grocery store in Utah, but if you can't find them at your grocery store, you can buy them online here. You can also use other freezer safe containers. I used some of my Rubbermaid tupperware containers when I ran out of jars and they work great.)


FRESH STRAWBERRIES, fully ripe and firm with deep red color. I used about 4-5 quarts of organic strawberries to make enough jam to fill 15 half pints.

BALL INSTANT PECTIN, one container of Instant Pectin will fill up to 15 half pint jars. (I bought the Instant Pectin at my grocery store, but if you can't find it, buy it here.) Make sure you buy the INSTANT PECTIN. Here's what it looks like:
*The recipe to make the freezer jam is on the inside flap of the label of Instant Pectin. Follow this for the exact measurements (I decided not to list the measurements and instead just show you the process of how to make the jam. Everyone will most likely make a different amount of jam depending on their situation and I didn't want to confuse anyone). Don't try to decrease or increase the amount of sugar or make substitutions. Your jam may have trouble setting if you do this. Also, refer to this LINK for further help calculating measurements depending on how much jam you'd like to make. It's super helpful, so look it over before you get started.*

First, start by rinsing and hulling all your strawberries. Angle your knife and cut a circle all around the top. The stem will come out looking like a cone.
After all the strawberries have been rinsed and hulled, process them in a blender or food processor. I like to work in batches to control the texture better.
I prefer a smoother jam to a chunkier, so I process the berries until you have bits of berry about the size of an oat.
Pour all strawberry puree into a large bowl. Set aside.

Measure sugar and pectin into a clean large bowl. Mix with a whisk to combine.
Measure and pour strawberry puree in with the sugar and pectin.
Stir to combine for 3 minutes. You can use a hand mixer for this if you don't want to do it by hand.

After mixing, ladle or use a funnel to pour jam into jars. Leave 1/2 inch headspace to allow for expansion during freezing. Place lids on and allow to sit for 30 minutes.
After the 30 minutes, you can either enjoy some right then (BECAUSE YOU JUST MADE JAM, BABY!), freeze for up to a year or you can refrigerate for up to three weeks.
The jar of jam on the left had been in my fridge and the jar on the right is still frozen. When you are ready to thaw frozen jam, simply place it in your fridge overnight and it will be ready for serving the next day.

I hope this was helpful and that you'll give it a go. If you have any questions, leave a comment and I'll help you out. Hope your Wednesday is going great! Thanks for stopping by!
images by Briana


Haley and Lance (but probably just Haley) said...

I'm so glad you posted this - I was craving freezer jam after you mentioned it the other day. And you're right, this looks like a piece of cake.

Brit Warner said...

I love strawberry jam, but have never been brave enough to make it. Maybe I will now :)

Kate F. said...

Thank you!!! I found this post after doing a google search for "strawberry freezer jam"...I'm off to the farm tomorrow to buy my berries and get going! I can't wait to try it out!