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Monday, May 14, 2012

More Basic Jam - Strawberry two ways!

One of the most popular basic recipe this time of year is Strawberry Jam. Today both Joanne and my dear friend Renee were busy making this very jam. Renee who has been diagnosed with extreme allergies has dedicated her life to create a pantry that allows her and her family to not miss out on any flavors or dishes that they enjoy.

As a result they had two different "safe" recipes but Renee made an adaptation to the original to lower the sugar. This is a great example of how you can lower your sugar content and still get your jam to be vibrant, shelf stable, and delicious.  For both of these recipe one addition to the recipe that I would add would be bottled lemon juice.  Over time the jam will discolor naturally but with the addition of lemon juice it will stay vibrant longer.

One other thing to consider in making strawberry jam is the fact that foam will occur during the final minutes of boiling. You can skim the foam with a metal spoon or you can leave it in the jar. The foam will leave a different look to your jars but is safe to eat. The foam is a result of air in the fruit rising to the top as the recipe gets hotter.

Joanne chose an original recipe with a liquid pectin and kept with tradition. Here is her recipe.

Joanne’s Strawberry Jam

4 cups crushed strawberries (I put them in my food processer)
7 cups of sugar
1 pouch of liquid pectin (I used CERTO)

Wash and stem berries. Crush them up. Not to fine though because you want to have some pieces of strawberries in your jam.
Put in pot with sugar and bring to boil. Once it comes to a boil add pectin. Bring back to a boil and stir for one minute.
Remove from heat (skim foam) and ladle into your prepared jars. Remove air bubbles and fill your jars to 1/4" headspace. Wipe rims clean with a wet papertowel and add hot lids/rings.  Process in water bath for 10 mins.


Here is Renee's lower sugar version. Renee also is using a powdered pectin recipe.
Renee’s Strawberry Jam
6 cups crushed strawberries
4 cups of sugar
1 box of Low Sugar Sure Jel
1 cup of water

Wash and stem berries. Crush them but leave small bits for the jam.
In a stainless steel pot add strawberries and sugar and bring to boil. Once it comes to a boil add pectin. Bring back to a boil and stir for one minute.

Remove from heat (skim foam) and ladle into your prepared jars. Remove air bubbles and fill your jars to 1/4" headspace. Wipe rims clean with a wet papertowel and add hot lids/rings.  Process in water bath for 10 minutes. 
Still got 8 cups but lots less sugar and tastes amazing!